Sunday, 11 April 2010
Ok, first of all here's the dictionary definition of 'jumping the shark' and by dictionary I mean wikipedia.
The phrase jump the shark refers to the climactic scene in "Hollywood", a three-part episode opening the fifth season of the American TV series Happy Days in September 1977. In this story, the series' central characters visit Los Angeles, where Fonzie (Henry Winkler), wearing swim trunks and his trademark leather jacket, jumps over a confined shark on water skis, answering a challenge to demonstrate his bravery. The series continued for nearly seven years after that, with a number of changes in cast and situations.
The expression was popularized in 1985 by Jon Hein, who would later create the web site jumptheshark.com (which now redirects to TVGuide.com). Hein explained the concept as follows: "It's a moment. A defining moment when you know that your favorite television program has reached its peak. That instant that you know from now on...it's all downhill. Some call it the climax. We call it 'Jumping the Shark.' From that moment on, the program will simply never be the same."
So, I can't remember why I got thinking about this topic, but here's where some of my favourite shows jumped the shark. Which is not to say after the shark jumping the show is bad, just past it's peak. And here goes:
Buffy: after the introduction of Dawn. Everything got too damn depressing. The show was still good but not nearly as much fun to watch.
Angel: the introduction of Connor. The storyline went seriously mental after this. And again wasn't as fun to watch. Season 5 of Angel kinda sorta redeemed the show, but it was never as good as it had been in season 2 and the first half of 3.
24: Hmmm, you could say the cougar incident, but for me 24 went majorly downhill after they killed Curtis. Not that he was vital but just that the episodes after he died got so preposterous that I lost interest. Season 6 was the nadir of 24 and it's struggled to achieve it's once great highs since.
BSG: After finding Earth being a wasteland and the reveal of the final Cylon the show got too obsessed with sorting out it's own mysteries instead of just kicking Cylon arse. And it still didn't make sense.
Smallville: This show has jumped the shark so many times it's not funny. But the ultimate one had to be when Lex left. Being the crux of the show for so long, for him to just leave was criminal.
Friends: The Vegas epsiode when Ross and Rachel got accidentally married. The show was still funny but just beyond dumb by that point.
There are others but that's all I can think of for now. If you can think of other shark jumping moments, post 'em.