Today is December 23, the only day of cultural celebration that means a damn to me: Festivus.
For those that don't recall the TV episode that aired over 25 years ago (18 Dec, 1997), Festivus relates to an episode of Seinfeld in which we discover that George's father Frank opted not to celebrate Christmas (in their Jewish household), instead opting for Festivus - a made up holiday that involves celebrating around an alluminium pole free of decorations (tinsel is distracting), feats of strength (an opportunity for Frank to physically fight George), and the annual airing of grievances.
In the spirit of Festivus, I am opting to air my own TV-related grievances.
1) Too many movies disguised as limited series.
Yes, I understand that it is hard to get movies made at a certain budget these days, but there are too many TV shows being made that have a movie plot that is just spread out across too many hours as a limited series. TV has an episodic quality to it - each episode needs to be able to stand on its own.
No, calling it an "eight hour movie" isn't the selling point you think it is.
2) Not knowing how many episodes
In this day and age of streaming where we are reliant on programming information being delivered from the streamer and not the TV guide, streamers need to be more transparent about how many episodes are in the season.
Last night I saw the very good Fleishman Is In Trouble. I was led to believe that show was only 7 episodes long (I may have it confused with another series). And after an episode that absolutely demonstrates the strength of what happens when a TV show fully embraces an episodic narrative, I wasn't 100% sure if it was a final episode or if there was one more.
3) Keegan-Michael Key
Enough with this guy. He's awful, not funny, and ruins everything he is in. I hate him so much. I hate him even more than Josh Gad, and that guy is an absolute ********. That's how much I hate Keegan-Michael Key.
Actually celebrate Christmas in 2022
This weekend as you are sitting around on Christmas day with (or avoiding) family, there's a really great TV event taking place all day.
There's a TV archivist who goes by the name of Flemish Dog. He has uploaded hundreds upon hundreds of hours of old TV recordings online. This Christmas on his Twitch channel he has programmed a livestream of 2 days worth of retro Christmas TV shows and clips. You can watch the trailer he has cut for it here:
It starts at 9am Christmas Day QLD-time at www.twitch.tv/flemishdog
Oh, here's the dumbest headline of 2022
Breaking: TV shows focus on workplaces. What an innovation for the form.
- Jeff Garlin has joined the cast for the 4th and final season of Never Have I Ever. Read: Variety
- The 18-episode Daredevil series for Disney+ will not be as gory as the Netflix series. It films for the entirety of 2023 and will be released in 2024. Read: Deadline
- Are you #TeamSpider from #AvatarTheWayOfWater? ABW is a Spider safe space, but here is an article debating the merits of Spider. Read: Polygon
- If you think you can get clear of 2022 without knowing what a nepo baby is, you are mistaken. Here's a good explainer. Read: The Guardian
- The door is being opened to sue for deceptive movie trailers. Read: The Verge
That 90s Show debuts on Netflix Jan 19.
Feature film AlKhallat+ debuts on Netflix Jan 19.
That's it for another week. Later today the weekly Always Be Streaming newsletter will be in your inboxes.
FYI, this gif that I end the newsletter with every day is from what is considered one of the greatest TV shows of all-time, Hill Street Blues. A Workplace TV drama.