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CBS: The Network that Time Forgot?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I'll preface my statement by saying that I don't watch much of CBS so the reality might be completely different from my perception.

 

I will say this though.   Every time I flip to the channel or look at their primetime line up I think how strange it is that most (or all) of their comedies are 3 camera sitcoms complete with a laugh track and that almost (or all) their dramas are the old school non-serialized variety where it seems to reset every week.   I know that there are some exceptions like "Person of Interest" and "Harper's Island" but those seem to serve as exceptions that prove the rule.

 

I know there are fans of CBS shows like "How I Met Your Mother" but the style of programming on that network seems like it hasn't evolved much since the 80's-90's.   Thoughts?

post #2 of 19

CBS is geared toward an older audience who like safe, bland shit.  I haven't watched a CBS show since Jericho and I can't even think of a scripted show before that.  I watch Big Brother and a few of the first seasons of Survivor but that's it.

 

When they go outside the box the series almost always fail.

 

Is there a list anywhere of CBS dramas through the years?

post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 

I hear good things about Person of Interest but the only show I watch on that network with any regularity is "The Amazing Race".   I wasn't super impressed with the little bit of Jericho that I got to see.   It felt like the kind of Post Apocalyptic show CBS would produce.   I do seem to remember them having some good programming in the 80's with Dallas, Dukes of Hazard (Fuck You), The Incredible Hulk, and Newhart.   There was also the very good yet short lived "Flash" TV series.   After that, I've tuned them out and it seems like now they're not even trying for the 18-49 demo.  

post #4 of 19

Aside from football and the occasional Letterman, I haven't watched anything on CBS since the mid-90s. It was either Chicago Hope or Murphy Brown, neither of which I watched to the end. I'm not sure why, but I haven't really felt like I missed much of anything during that period.

 

I might have watched an episode or two of Threshold.

 

CBS has done very well for itself by focusing on an older audience that tends to watch shows forever an demand little of their TV. That's also probably the most reliable audience to focus on. It's also getting in a less and less favorable bracket for advertisers, so they may have a major demographic crisis on their hands fairly soon.

 

I think we just aren't in their strategy anymore. We tend to watch TV much too carefully, and a lot of CBS shows, maybe most of them, are not designed to be watched closely. If you want good TV, as opposed to amiable, unchallenging TV, CBS isn't for you.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anyawatchin Angel View Post

Is there a list anywhere of CBS dramas through the years?

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_programs_previously_broadcast_by_CBS

post #5 of 19

I watched the first couple of seasons of The Good Wife; dropped that.  Had hopes for NYC22 last year, but it wasn't that great and died on the vine. 
 

post #6 of 19

     Quote:

Originally Posted by dynamotv View Post

I hear good things about Person of Interest but the only show I watch on that network with any regularity is "The Amazing Race".   I wasn't super impressed with the little bit of Jericho that I got to see.   It felt like the kind of Post Apocalyptic show CBS would produce.   I do seem to remember them having some good programming in the 80's with Dallas, Dukes of Hazard (Fuck You), The Incredible Hulk, and Newhart.   There was also the very good yet short lived "Flash" TV series.   After that, I've tuned them out and it seems like now they're not even trying for the 18-49 demo.  

 

Jericho got quite great near the end, breaking well outside the "CBS-box" most of their dramatic shows seem saddled with. Unfortunately, the more unconventional, dynamic, and cable TV-like Jericho got, the more the audience dropped away, which illustrates the entire CBS microcosm with one series, I think.

 

Ben's correct -- there's a demographic crisis on the way for this network, and it's gonna be here sooner than anyone thinks.

post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by dynamotv View Post

I'll preface my statement by saying that I don't watch much of CBS so the reality might be completely different from my perception.

 

I will say this though.   Every time I flip to the channel or look at their primetime line up I think how strange it is that most (or all) of their comedies are 3 camera sitcoms complete with a laugh track and that almost (or all) their dramas are the old school non-serialized variety where it seems to reset every week.   I know that there are some exceptions like "Person of Interest" and "Harper's Island" but those seem to serve as exceptions that prove the rule.

 

I know there are fans of CBS shows like "How I Met Your Mother" but the style of programming on that network seems like it hasn't evolved much since the 80's-90's.   Thoughts?

The Good Wife is excellent and serialized. Great main cast (Christine Baranski!), good to great recurring cast and guest stars.

post #8 of 19

Am I correct in assuming they don't broadcast their shows online? If so, them's some big balls.

post #9 of 19

Just finally got into How I Met Your Mother this year. It's pretty damned stellar, and it's 100% on the wrong network.

 

In a continuing theme from gabe, though, it's also one of the few shows I can think of where they didn't jump all over adding the previous season to Netflix when the new one started. Theyre two seasons behind now. Thats just weird.

post #10 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cameron Hughes View Post

The Good Wife is excellent and serialized. Great main cast (Christine Baranski!), good to great recurring cast and guest stars.

 

THE GOOD WIFE is one of the best shows on television right now.

post #11 of 19

thanks.  Was looking for something year by year but close enough.

 

Robbery Homocide Division, Jericho, & Joan of Arcadia are the only shows in the past 10 years I watched on that Network.

 

I have zero interest in turning on The Good Wife.

post #12 of 19

NCIS I've watched for a couple of years. Not a very hard edged show but the cast are generally fun including an old fav of mine David McCallum (grew up on U.N.C.L.E. and Outer Limits)

post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Clark View Post

Just finally got into How I Met Your Mother this year. It's pretty damned stellar, and it's 100% on the wrong network.

 

In a continuing theme from gabe, though, it's also one of the few shows I can think of where they didn't jump all over adding the previous season to Netflix when the new one started. Theyre two seasons behind now. Thats just weird.

 

They actually just dropped Season 7 of HIMYM today

post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevehauk View Post

NCIS I've watched for a couple of years. Not a very hard edged show but the cast are generally fun including an old fav of mine David McCallum (grew up on U.N.C.L.E. and Outer Limits)
Yeah, I'm a fan of NCIS as well. Just the original though. It and Letterman are the only two shows I bother with. I do hear good things about Vegas however.
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by dynamotv View Post

I hear good things about Person of Interest


Person of Interest is excellent.

 

It is also the only show on CBS I watch. POI feels so different from most of CBS' stuff that iif I didn't know what network aired it, it'd take me at least 4 guesses to get it right.

post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul755 View Post


I do hear good things about Vegas however.

 

Vegas has some good actors and the potential to be a very good show.  However, it's hamstrung by the seeming rule that every episode must have 60% "mystery of the week" content and only 40% serialized content.  The long-term story arcs could be interesting, but so much of every episode plays out like CSI:1960.  Which goes back to the original criticism of this thread.

 

Even Survivor, unique when it premiered, has become cliched after 20-odd games.  Same archetypes pop up, always the same basic strategy of "alliances" that seemed so brilliant in the first season.

post #17 of 19

Well Elementary is one of the best shows on TV right now.. which is reason enough to watch CBS.

 

Another great show is H50, which next to Burn Notice are the only two Action shows on primetime TV worth a damn. H50 not only ups the gun factor, but lots of brutal deaths too. That and the cast is enjoyable.

post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Clark View Post

Just finally got into How I Met Your Mother this year. It's pretty damned stellar, and it's 100% on the wrong network.

 

In a continuing theme from gabe, though, it's also one of the few shows I can think of where they didn't jump all over adding the previous season to Netflix when the new one started. Theyre two seasons behind now. Thats just weird.

 

I love the first few seasons of HIMYM, but I think it totally fits with the comforting, non-demanding aesthetic that's been described on this thread. Thing is, you don't have to sacrifice clever writing to hit that vibe - you can even smuggle in some meta jokes and improv humour if you want - to acheive that kind of vibe...I mean, that's what most good sitcoms from the 50's to the 90's did. 

post #19 of 19

Hawaii Five O's remake of the classic Hookman episode was actually some Must see TV this week.   Peter Wellers starred and directed.. and there were some other great cameos too.

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