October 24, 2009

My Keys to Awesome Television

While watching White Collar, I had an epiphany about what makes good television.  First, if you're going to have a police procedural you're going to need a special consultant like a con-man, a really smart scientist (Bones), a hyper observant “psychic” (Psych), or a crime novelist (Castle).  

Secondly, if you cannot incorporate a consultant, just make the entire show about con-men (Leverage) because who doesn't love a good con-job?  

In order to make your show extra awesome just incorporate someone who has worked with Joss Whedon like Adam Baldwin (Firefly and Chuck), Nathan Fillion (Firefly, Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-long Blog, and Castle), David Boreanaz (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Bones), or Christian Kane (Angel & Leverage).  Doing this will usually get your show a lot of geek cred, and at least two abbreviated seasons.  Just take Dollhouse (Buffy's Eliza Dushku) and The Sarah Connor Chronicles (Firefly's Summer Glau) as an example.

Based on the last point, if you want people to really know that your show is the best thing going you just need to remember two words: Mark Sheppard.  If you cast Sheppard in your show it's going to be a modest hit (Warehouse 13, Leverage, Burn Notice, In Plain Sight), a cult classic (Firefly, The Middleman, Dollhouse), a mega hit (NCIS, CSI, CSI: New York, 24) or a pop-culture phenomena (Battlestar Galactica).  You really can’t go wrong with Sheppard.

So, who needs to spend millions of dollars and countless hours on development when you can just follow these simple rules, or you could do what CBS does and make the exact same show fifty times.  Either works I suppose.


Anonymous said...

Mark Sheppard was in the first season of "The X-Files" too. Definately a hit show.

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