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  1. #41
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    Jumping the shark is an idiom created by Jon Hein that is used to describe the moment in the evolution of a television show when it begins a decline in quality that is beyond recovery.
    Many of the moments described in the OP and in the thread don't work Like, a character that has been there the entire series cannot be the reason the series 'jumped the shark' unless that character actually did something definable to cause the shark jumping.

    I loved Buffy season 5, honestly, even if Dawn was annoying. The Body might be the single best television episode I have ever seen, and I am probably in the minority but I adored Glory.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lulu View Post
    Very interesting. I remember on the old JTS site, a lot of posters chose the episode where Mary's baby died in the fire as LHOTP's jump the shark moment, and there was also the mime/clown that raped Sylvia episode.

    Speaking of Little House kiddos, don't forget Jenny, played by Shannon Doherty.
    The Sylvia episode is just another reminder of how sadistic Michael Landon was. If it wasn't Mary going blind, losing her child, being kidnapped by the James brothers, then he always put a Sylvia in for comedotragic relief. "Kith me my wub" was her best and most tragic line. Plus, poor Sylvia, my friends joke with me sometimes when I'm not feeling great that I'm climbing 'the ladder to nowhere'. And we all get the Sylvia reference. Nohohohohohoh! Nohohoho!

    I would have maybe tolerated Shannen Doherty as Jenny. Except that the SEASON before had Royal Wilder and his wife drop off their two hell on wheels sons while they had a second honeymoon. One of them played Joey in Airplane ("So, Joey, have you ever seen a grown man naked?") That kid. But then the next season, no vigilante boys, no wife, just all of a sudden, just JENNY. And she sucked. If she wasn't going all Virginia Woolf in the pond, she was having a stroke or taming Wild Boy. I cared more about frog mouthed Cassandra and her ugly crying than I could about Jenny.

    And Mary's burnt baby. Yes, that could be a JTS moment, because Mary already was the on-hold-tragedy cry queen. We saw her lose her sight, we saw her kidnapped and possibly raped. So Landon decides, well, let's have her give birth and then we can watch poor Adam JR burn to death while Mary goes crazy? The funny thing is, the actor who played Alice Garvey, I think it was Hersha Parady, asked to be written out of the show. Well Landon REALLY wrote her out, burning her to death and using poor little Adam JR as a battering ram against the window.
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  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by AliasJohnDoe View Post
    "Heroes": In season 2 and beyond, when all common sense and continuity to a mythology was thrown out the window.
    I loved Heroes, but their fatal mistake was the producers falling in love with Zachary Quinto and refusing to let Sylar remain dead after S1, and in general misunderstanding what the strengths of the show were. But I suppose the JTS part would be the introduction of the inky-tear twins.


    Quote Originally Posted by michiruwater View Post
    I loved Buffy season 5, honestly, even if Dawn was annoying. The Body might be the single best television episode I have ever seen, and I am probably in the minority but I adored Glory.
    I think the Dawn character ran out of ideas long before the show ended, but there were plenty of fabulous moments in seasons 5-7. The Body was truly amazing, as was Once More, With Feeling. And I loooooooved Glory. I'm sorry that Clare Kramer hasn't had more of a career, she was excellent.
    Q: Why can't I read the competition threads?
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    Quote Originally Posted by leesaleesa View Post
    David Silver becoming cool on 90210 was a shark jumping moment, but I can't remember if that was before or after Andrea Zuckerberg had a baby, which is an automatic shark jump.
    He became cool their senior year in high school, after he somehow ended becoming part of that class even though he'd been introduced as younger. Andrea had her baby in college, when she was 40.

    Quote Originally Posted by professordeb View Post
    Secretly, I love to see someone mash their intro music together somehow and then see someone skate to it -- preferably a dance couple. A slayer and a vampire with a soul. Hmmm?
    Yes! Use the Buffy/Angel theme and maybe Sacrifice from The Gift, too.

  5. #45
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    Another show that jumped the shark was Boston Legal. Too many characters coming and going and then they got too political. I don't need fictional characters on TV lecturing me about the issues and telling me who to vote for.

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    Here are the shows I think in one form or another have "jumped the shark" as far as I am concerned:

    CSI
    NCIS
    NCIS: LA
    Hawaii 5 0
    DWTS
    Castle
    “Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.” William Shakespeare

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Forrest View Post
    Little House was only supposed to run for five seasons (I think, maybe it was only four, as per the original actors' contracts). The last episode was going to be I'll Be Waving As You Drive Away, otherwise known as the one where Mary goes blind. The thing was, Melissa Sue Anderson was SOOO good, earning an Emmy nomination (the ONLY cast member to be nominated in the show's history) that the ratings were sky high so the network kept it on. But then they ran out of ideas. The move to Winoka, Albert the demon child, James and Cassandra, Nancy. The show jumped the shark after Mary went blind. Nevermind the whole creepiness factor with a 23 year old Almanzo and 14 y/o Laura bopping around the prairie in her pigtails. Just ick.

    .

    Except Mary did go blind in real life and up to then, the storylines were sort of following the books the show was based on. It was when Michael Landon really started moving away from Laura Ingalls Wilder's story that the show JTS. In reality, Mary never married, Laura did marry Almanzo who was ten years older than her, but the Ingalls never adopted other children etc.

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    JAG - When Harm quit the Navy, adopted a 12 year old girl, and went crop-dusting, before going off all crazy after Mac who was on a CIA mission and he STILL didn't tell her he loved her.

    As much as I loved JAG, ten seasons was a bit beyond its lifespan...and then AJ left


    Bones - When she got pregnant.

    Blue Heelers
    (lol no-one will know/remember/care about this one) - When the police station got blown up.

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    Ally McBeal. Still I love RDJ.
    The O.C. One of worst jumping the sharks ever.
    Prison Break. No explanation needed.
    Battlestar Galactica. Kara Thrace just needed sadation to keep her from talking. But still one of my favorite shows
    Criminal Minds. When they let both JJ and Emily go.
    Desperate Housewives. Could there be more drama queens in one show? I don't even remember when the show was genuinely enjoyable.
    Last edited by l'etoile; 10-15-2012 at 12:30 PM.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by judiz View Post
    Except Mary did go blind in real life and up to then, the storylines were sort of following the books the show was based on. It was when Michael Landon really started moving away from Laura Ingalls Wilder's story that the show JTS. In reality, Mary never married, Laura did marry Almanzo who was ten years older than her, but the Ingalls never adopted other children etc.
    There's something about it in Melissa Gilbert's autobiography; haven't read it properly but from what I gather Michael Landon actually tried to save the show by bringing in the new kids because with the Ingalls children grown they had lost the "cute" factor.
    But I agree. Albert was okay, but James and Cassandra were definitely too much!

    Many of the shows, I feel, jump the shark when the original cast is replaced for whatever reason and especially when it happens late in the show. Little House, X-Files, Profiler. CSI: NY (though they were dwindling already before Kanakaredes left).
    I find CSI (the original) to be the exception as I find myself liking the newest cast.

  11. #51
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    I watched Blue Heelers (and every other British and Australian soap on the air) the summer I lived in London, like 15 years ago. I totally loved it, but I was so young that I didn't really get that it, and the other Australian soaps, were Australian and not English until someone told me!

  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by AliasJohnDoe View Post
    "Heroes": In season 2 and beyond, when all common sense and continuity to a mythology was thrown out the window.

    I wouldn't mind a "Heroes II", if it was helmed by someone who respected the mythology and stuck to it. A series like this could become a lucrative franchise if done right.
    Agreed. The first season is just amazing. Then I got to the second and went from completely obsessed to completely indifferent.

    I know Sex and the City has been mentioned, but I'd like to propose that the series jumped the shark midway through season 6, right around the appearance of Mikhail Barishnikov. I don't blame Mikhail, but the writing became awful and it morphed from a comedic show into some kind of sappy soap opera. Ugh. The series finale still pisses me off when I think about it.

    Oh and the Sopranos jumped the shark I think an episode or two after Adriana realizes she's being followed by the FBI. I distinctly remember that episode being awesome (she vomits all over the table when they tell her she has to become an informant), and then after that it started to go downhill.
    Last edited by Scintillation; 10-15-2012 at 03:29 PM.

  13. #53
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    I'm loving this thread!

    How about Friends? - Many may disagree but when Monica and Chandler got together (I think it was the sometime in the '99 season), the show for me lost a certain 'something'. Maybe it was because Ross and Rachel were on and off, then you had another couple in the group of six pairing up.

    Sex and the City - IDK. I think the show may have 'jumped the shark' post 9/11 (mostly good from inception in '98 to '01). For me, it was too much that these 4 self-centered neurotics carried on in almost the same way in NYC even after the world changed so much ... except they were older, less secure and even whinier. Anyway, whiny, self-centered neurotics who take themselves seriously are only funny for a little while, but it gets old fast

    Did The Golden Girls ever jump the shark? I think TGG started to wane in the last year, and may have experienced a drip drip drip in the last few seasons (it was learned later that Bea Arthur wanted out of the show and maybe she was 'mailing in' her performances in retrospect). But, the show was pretty solid throughout, no?

    I think that Will & Grace lost something around '04. It may have been that Debra Messing's performances as Grace were quite subdued and she eventually disappeared to give birth, which may have shook up the tight chemistry on the show.

    Desperate Housewives - I personally think it lost something in its 2d season, when Alfre Woodard kept her son locked up in the basement. A little too much

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Forrest View Post
    The Sylvia episode is just another reminder of how sadistic Michael Landon was. If it wasn't Mary going blind, losing her child, being kidnapped by the James brothers, then he always put a Sylvia in for comedotragic relief. "Kith me my wub" was her best and most tragic line. Plus, poor Sylvia, my friends joke with me sometimes when I'm not feeling great that I'm climbing 'the ladder to nowhere'. And we all get the Sylvia reference. Nohohohohohoh! Nohohoho!
    I remember the first time I watched the episode, I was home on college break, watching LHOTP on Hallmark, because that's just how I roll , and the entire episode was just The first time I watched it, I actually thought it was Sylvia's father who was dressing up as a mime in order to rape her, so my mind is even darker than Michael Landon's.

    LHOTP has a reputation for being schmaltzy & overly sweet, and it was, but it was also had some pretty dark storylines: not only do we have mimes raping & impregnanting 13 year olds, we have babies burning alive, Albert had a one episode morphine addiction, wagon accidents, orphans galore thanks to said wagon accidents, and I'm pretty sure Ma had a mental breakdown at some point. Not to mention for the series finale, they literally blow up Walnut Grove.

    I did love the Olsens though.

  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by lulu View Post
    LHOTP has a reputation for being schmaltzy & overly sweet, and it was, but it was also had some pretty dark storylines: not only do we have mimes raping & impregnanting 13 year olds, we have babies burning alive, Albert had a one episode morphine addiction, wagon accidents, orphans galore thanks to said wagon accidents, and I'm pretty sure Ma had a mental breakdown at some point. Not to mention for the series finale, they literally blow up Walnut Grove.
    OMG I've never watched the TV series, but I can't help laughing at how this sounds NOTHING like the books at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ballettmaus View Post
    There's something about it in Melissa Gilbert's autobiography; haven't read it properly but from what I gather Michael Landon actually tried to save the show by bringing in the new kids because with the Ingalls children grown they had lost the "cute" factor.
    But I agree. Albert was okay, but James and Cassandra were definitely too much!
    A lot of shows tried this same remedy: Mad About You, Blossom, Family Ties, Growing Pains, The Cosby Show, Different Strokes, Full House and who could forget the show that probably started the trend in the first place, The Brady Bunch. While it might have bought the show one or two more seasons on the air, it usually signaled that the quality of the show had gone downhill.

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    ^The show should have a bigger gay following just because of Nellie Oleson - evil smile, snarky comments, holding court. All this in the 19th Century!

    Not to mention the flouncy dresses, OTT curls, bows, patent leather shoes, lollipops. I mean, Draq Queens should be doing this look for Halloween non-stop!

  18. #58
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    Agree that LHOTP lost it when they started inventing content that wasn't in the books. There were 8 or 10 of them, so plenty there without making stuff up.

    when Oliver joined The Brady Bunch. They're already doing it on Modern Family by SORASing Lily slightly, and another baby on they way; wouldn't be surprised if Cam and Mitch end up adopting an older child to fill the void as Luke grows up.

    Some of the comments here are more about character development. On Friends, the whole show didn't jump the shark, but Monica did. She started as an intelligent character with some OCD tendencies, but after a few seasons became a neurotic parody. Almost happened to Joey when they focused on his dumbness instead of his popularity with women, but they got that character back and better than before in the storyline when he fell for Rachel later on in the series.

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    Quote Originally Posted by michiruwater View Post

    I loved Buffy season 5, honestly, even if Dawn was annoying. The Body might be the single best television episode I have ever seen, and I am probably in the minority but I adored Glory.
    I agree. Glory was FABULOUS!!! She's my favorite big bad ever! I think every season of Buffy had at least 1, usually way more, really great episodes.
    Team Peeps!

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    Quote Originally Posted by lulu View Post
    Very interesting. I remember on the old JTS site, a lot of posters chose the episode where Mary's baby died in the fire as LHOTP's jump the shark moment, and there was also the mime/clown that raped Sylvia episode.

    Speaking of Little House kiddos, don't forget Jenny, played by Shannon Doherty.
    ROFL...to me "Little House" jumped the shark the minute they green-lighted something that bore absolutely no resemblance to the books beyond the name.

    (Okay, and possibly Laura and Almanzo's age difference, which really was nine years or so--she was 15 when they met. They didn't get married until she was 18, and then it was a rush to avoid his family wanting a big wedding.)

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