Tuesdays are Prompts days at Better Endings, relating to our weekly theme, which this week is television Better Endings. I’ll list some topics you might write or talk about, or share your Comments or stories about, in relation to the Better Endings concept. Is there a TV series you’ve always wished would have ended differently, especially one you felt personally invested in while the series was on the air? Or, is there a specific episode of a favorite television program you would love to see a Better Ending for?
I’ll list some possible topics for creative re-scripting in a bit. But overnight while I was contemplating this theme, I realized how television as an expressive MEDIUM is a blank canvas for the imagination to project upon. To me, much of contemporary TV fare is vacuous, little more than comic or dramatic drivel based on overused characters and tedious plots. Maybe that reveals my age (59), showing I am jaded about contemporary TV situational comedy and drama. I grew up with the original Star Trek and heady fare like Mission Impossible, The Prisoner , The Avengers and Dr. No; plus raucous, 60’s-70’s ‘revolutionary’ romps including Laugh-In, The Love Boat, Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie, all of which presented a ‘new’ world of magical-thinking possibilities and romantic license. But closer to my point: If you think of television as a blank canvas, what would you really LIKE TO SEE projected there?
Last night I envisioned a Reality program that would be somewhat of a cross between TED Talks and How It’s Made. A challenging global issue, like World Hunger, would be given to a Think Tank assembly of inventors, political savants, natural scientists and social scientists, and engineers from relevant fields, with a global audience free to call in with their ideas, too. The program would stay on that challenging issue, inviting pertinent policy makers and politicians as needed, for as long as the assembly took to arrive at practical solutions and then to actually IMPLEMENT them, at least on a small scale that could then realistically be expanded to a whole scale transformation. What a concept! Middle East peace, asteroid deflection, fresh water sustainability, free and renewable energy with non-harmful means of extraction and generation, etcetera…now, there’s a TV program I would tune into! (Are there any producers or screenwriters out there?) Why COULDN’T we use television or other worldwide information media to arrive at win-win situations to global problems as a collective, species wide think tank?
Okay now, let me rein this in some. Here’s a list of possible ‘prompt’ topics to apply Better Endings to regarding television. Feel free to Comment with your own ideas:
- Family situational comedies
- Crime dramas
- Science documentaries
- The composition of ensemble casts (who would combine well, for what kinds of programs?)
- Memorable series endings re-writes (e.g. Friends, Seinfeld, the Mary Tyler Moore show, Lost, All in the Family)
- Projected ‘good’ endings of current series
- Day-TV soap operas
- Sci-fi drama series
- Documentary series
- Reality TV
If you think of a good “through-line” (that is, a one sentence zinger that describes a fully envisioned episode or series concept), please send it to share! The sky’s the limit…well actually, not even!
Thanks for stopping by. And always, Better Endings to You! – Linda