Contrary to popular belief, programming a television network is not all fun and games, although the notion that a monkey with a dart could do a better job has been brought up from time to time.
Creating a TV show is a painstaking process that involves producers, writers, actors or participants, and production people, all who get paid – or so they tell me. And, believe it or not, the shows that eventually are aired are the good ones. There are many more worse ones that never see the light of day (I know, I don’t buy that either).
That being said (or written, as the case may be), I would like to present my TOP 13 LIST of the shows that did not make it to your screen last year. I call this list:
13. Breaking Mediocre – The story of a struggling Frito-Lays truck driver who tries to strike it rich by selling black market chips to unsuspecting bloggers in the hopes of getting them hooked. Viewers will not want to miss the exciting series climax in which our dark hero is double-dipped to death in a Bergmanesque homage.
12. Dancing with the Unknowns – In this reality competition series, ordinary people are plucked off the streets and paired with professional dance instructors in a winner-take-all round robin dance off. The grand prize winner gets their dignity back, and the producers will erase their tapes.
11. Sad Men – Mopey ad executives from the 1960’s sit around and smoke cigarettes and wonder why shirts only come in white.
10. Game of Thrones, the Musical – Each week 12 contestants with full bladders are placed onstage for a riotous game of musical chairs, this time with toilets used in place of chairs. At-home viewers are encouraged to Tweet supportive messages to their favorite player, as the numbers dwindle down to the eventual winner, who is allowed to use their prize for relief. As for the losers: good luck with that.
9. Ancient Family – The story of the McGriffs, a dysfunctional West Virginia family in an 1880’s coal mining town. Good times ensue when youngest daughter, Rosanna, quits her job as a schoolmarm to work in the mines alongside her father, Bubba, and oldest son, Biff, leaves town with a new pair of tap shoes to try to make it on Broadway.
8. Deck Dynasty – The saga of a down-home Louisiana carpenter and his struggles to keep his family financially afloat by selling wooden decks to the colorful local people of the bayou so that their homes don’t float away. Each week, viewers are treated to a new recipe for Cajun-style jerky.
7. America’s Got Too Much Time on Its Hands – A weekly talent show in which half of America with boring lives and nothing to do except for idiotic stunts, perform live for the other half of America who are even more boring because they are watching the show.
6. The Big Bank Theory – This laugh-a-minute sitcom follows the lives of four nerds who open a bank in the attempt to shift the earth’s axis by storing all of its loose change in their vault. Chachinga!
5. Two and a Half Guys – This weekly dramedy follows the lives of almost-three men who work as lumberjacks in the Pacific Northwest. Fate throws them an interesting twist in episode one, when the first two guys mistake the third one for a balsam, and cut him in half. You won’t want to miss episode seven, when the half-a-guy is chosen best man for his friend’s wedding and tries to rent only the top half of a tuxedo. Good times!
4. Parks and Defecation – This gritty drama follows “The Poop Squad,” a dedicated group of law enforcement officers who crack down on violators of the “Curb Your Dog” campaign. As they warn viewers in the next town they are about to visit, “Watch your step!”
3. The Oz Doctors Show – Set in a faraway land, this daily talk show is hosted by Munchkins who give out medical advice and healthy living tips. Each Wednesday is “Short People Day,” in which our diminutive hosts give out tips on how to cope with such things as: driving while still in a booster seat and being too short to go on the rides at Disneyworld.
2. The Young and the Listless – This soap opera/reality show examines the lives of ten teenagers who refuse to get off the couch.
1. Nurse Jerky – Originally on NBC’s Sunday schedule, “Nurse Jerky” is a cleverly-crafted docudrama about a hospital nurse and her frustrated dream of becoming a stand-up comic. Viewers are kept in stitches as Jerky performs her hijinks on patients in her ward such as: putting whoopee cushions in the gurneys, dabbing Vaseline on the bedpans, and turning life support on and off with her quirky one-liner “Just kiddin’ folks!”