The League XXXVII: Jumping the Shark.


Its yet another edition of the League of Extraordinary Bloggers!  Everyone took last week off.  Stretched our legs, took some naps, put in the storm windows, but now the blogs are back for yet another weekly question from our fearless leader, Brian at Cool and Collected.   Brian, what do you have for us this week?

At what point did a pop culture series “jump the shark” and lose your interest.


Oh wow where to even begin?  Sure, plenty of media has jumped the shark.  Some of it is still mid jump.  But in order to really write up this article I have to look at the most dramatic shark jumpers.  The ones that went above and beyond mere mistakes and into flat out ruining things and pissing me off.  Also, they must be recent enough to still sting.  Therefore, pain in the ass that she is, Dawn of Buffy the Vampire Slayer fame gets a pass this time.  No, there are two things that are guaranteed to send me into a rant at least once a week lately.

(Seriously. I typed in “New 52 Fail” in Google Image and this was the first thing up.  Didn’t even have to type DC.)



1.  DC Comics New 52.

I understand the original thought behind this, however everything has fallen apart in the execution.  “We need new readers!”  Yes, yes you do.  How are you going to go about this?  By putting the comics into places other than comic book stores?  Say…. back on grocery store magazine racks, or in Hot Topics and Spencer’s Gifts worldwide?  Maybe Best Buy and FYE?  Oh, how about attaching a copy of the comics to every game of Batman Arkham City, or Lego Batman, or the numerous Blu Rays.  Hell, have a stack of comics at each movie theater and hand them out to people as they walk in to see the Dark Knight Rises, with a piece of paper inside that says “here is where you can buy comics in your area!”  OR go digital and give out the first ones for free with purchase of popular apps like Angry Birds or Words with Friends.  Look!  Angry Birds Star Wars came out.  With download you also get a free download of ComiXology and a free issue of Dark Horse comics’ Star Wars books.  Boom, that puts a comic book app on every device and a free book to read.  The first taste is free guys!  So, yeah, all of that stuff could have worked but what happened instead?

Hey long time readers, guess what?  Fuck off that’s what!  All of the stories you know and love now no longer matter.  Well, some of them matter, maybe.  And its possible they happened in the same way as before, but probably not.  No you cant ask us what stories count and which don’t because we don’t know yet.  We’re making it up as we go along!  So, the old stories don’t matter and now I have boxes and boxes of comics that are all part of one incredibly larger story that suddenly stopped and no longer matters.  Imagine today that George RR Martin says fuck it and doesn’t finish the Game of Thrones series.  Wouldn’t you feel cheated?  Robbed of all you invested in the series?  Death is one thing.  This is just giving up.

Yes, there are some good stories in here.   But the worst part is, those good stories could still have been told in the classic DC Universe we knew and loved!  Aquaman could have been spun into a bad ass.   Swamp Thing and Animal Man could have battled the Rot.  The Joker could have become even more violent.  The Court of Owls could still have revealed themselves.

Now, some of you might say, Kevin aren’t you mad about Marvel NOW too?  No, no I’m not.  Yes, Marvel is changing a lot.  Yes, the success of the movies have rippled into the comics.  Yes, most of the titles are restarting with new number ones.  But, the biggest difference of all is that the old stuff still matters.  The Uncanny X-Men began, became all new all different, had a successful run of blue and gold teams, had a Schism and more.  Sure this is now (or NOW!) the days of the Uncanny Avengers, but the fact is all of the old stuff still happened, still mattered and can still be cited.  DC cant even decide if Tim Drake was ever Robin.  (“He’s always been Red Robin!”  Yes, but what about Young Justice in which he is called Robin.  “Screw you we’ll cancel it!”)

In the quest to attract new readers (which hasn’t happened, the readers that were already there are just buying titles they weren’t before out of curiosity/speculation) all DC accomplished is pissing off the old ones.  Now they run the risk of having less fans than they started with.

New readers are great, they’re wonderful.  Yes we need them, but there are better ways.  Better ways to bring in kids.

Speaking of bringing in kids, that leads me to the other thing that’s pissing me off with its shark jumping.

2. Bones.

This used to be one of the favorite shows here at Casa Hellions.  Elise and I even have what we call “Bones Dance Party”.  The theme comes on and we groove out like we’re at a rave.   Then we see some of the grossest bodies and some witty writing all leading up to solving the weekly crime of the week.  It was loads of fun!

Then Emily Deschanel had to go and have a baby!

Alright alright, not that there is anything wrong with having a child.  What is wrong is how the show immediately decided to make this pregnancy the focus of the show to the detriment of all other things that made the show great.  One, the will-they-or-wont-they unrealized love that helped fuel the show has now disappeared.  Not only did they hook up, they have a child, and live together, and I’m sure there will be a wedding before the end of the series too.  Remember how good Moonlighting was after they hooked up?  Sub question, remember Moonlighting?

Anyways, its not only the fact that they hooked up and have a baby.  Its that this baby now became the central part of the show and everything else suffered for it.  Finding a nanny, deciding on a school, breast feeding.  The show is not called Bones because there are more bones in a baby than an adult.  Its called that because they look at the bones of dead people!  Remember back in the good days when people died violently on this show.  Where did that go?!

The thing that really sent me over though is the recent episode in which Temperance debates on running for President.  She writes a list of pros and cons.  She says all of the great things she has done in her life and what she hopes to accomplish.  This is a serious debate for her.  She is really thinking about running for President within this episode.  Its not sarcasm, its not for shits and giggles, this is real debate.  And every bit of it pissed me right off.

This woman, Bones, Temperance, is supposed to be one of the smartest people on the planet.  Therefore she would know how elections actually work.  It doesn’t matter what ideas she has.  She should run for Congress first.  Maybe even be a Governor.  Second, there is the obscene amount of money necessary to run for office.  Running for any office, by either party, is not about who’s better.  Many times its about who has more money.  Temperance should, in theory, be more than aware of this.  She should have seen enough of the world by now to be jaded to much of it.  Certainly to the political system.

It is this moment that took this show over a cliff in my mind, and I honestly hope this is the last season so it wont drop any further.

Sub answer.  The Mrs and I were watching 2 Broke Girls a year ago, during the first season.  It was alright and hey, you know, Kat Dennings.  The overall arc of the show hinges on them making these cupcakes that are better than anyone else’s cupcakes and thus how the two girls will no longer be broke.  Excellent. Great.  Paper thin but an easy idea.  Until an episode in which they go to a store to buy boxed cake mix.  Duncan Hines, Betty Crocker or whoever it may have been is irrelevant.  The point is the best cupcakes in the world are something I can walk my happy ass down to the corner store and purchase myself.  No one wants to watch me go to the grocery store for a half hour every week, and thus we have never returned for a minute more of this show.


Hey, lets see what the rest of the League has to say about this very same topic.

The Man Who Stares at Toys has a great list


Shezcrafti hates aliens


Crooked Ninja hates Hollywood


Primordial Badger jumps the Sharkticons.


Reis at the Dork Horde gets pissed off at fake Duke boys.


Of Flying Monkeys is still mad about the X-Files.


Michael May makes some excellent points about House.


Brian of Cool and Collected has some issues with SAMCRO


That Figures could have saved me a lot of money a week back if I had read his Paranormal Activity post then.


Henchgirl makes me glad I didn’t get too far into Farscape.


Random Nerdness details some season by season sharks from the X-Files.


Sideshow Cinema brings the TMNT (I know, I was surprised too!)

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