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SpoilerTV`s Weekly Round Table: 50th Edition

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Hello guys it is time for another Weekly Round Table. We prepped some good questions and even better answers for you. SpoilerTV`s writers joining me (MK) are Laura (LS), Milo (MI), Naomi (NK), Yon (SJ), Jamie (JC), Beth (BW) and our new addition Ellys (EC) Sit back and enjoy the discussion, don`t forget to join the discussion via the comment section.

1. The FIFA World Cup is in full swing and people all over the world are catching the Football Fever. With Sport, in general, being a big factor worldwide why is the amount of sport-related shows so limited? PS. Who is your Dark Horse at the WC?

MK: The issue with shows and sports is that there ain`t much focus on the actual sport or sport live, they always romanticize them. I think if someone came up with a fresh idea and focused storytelling it could work cause an audience for all the bts drama and process is certainly there they just need to be appealed.

MI: There is a big lack of sport shows in media at the moment, with the last one that I watched being the underrated and prematurely cancelled Pitch (despite my lack of interest in Baseball in general), but especially football-related shows, which is a shame given the potential. There's only ever been one good football movie that I've seen - John Huston's Escape to Victory - starring Sylvester Stallone, Pele & Michael Caine among others, following a group of Allied Prisoners of War who play against a team of Germany's best during the middle of World War 2, and it's definitely worth a watch for the last match alone) but I'd kill for a good UK-based football TV show, ideally Arsenal-centric. I've been paying a lot of attention to the World Cup, apart from when I've been at work, and It'll be interesting to see who does well this year. I can see Uruguay (Torreira masterclass anyone?) getting quite far - and Croatia too, especially as they beat Argentina. I just want Arsenal players to do well though, and not get injured for the new season, I'm not overly concerned about England that much even though I'm English, as long as it's not an embarrassment like the last World Cup and the Euros was. So far it seems to be going quite nicely.

SJ: I feel like the general audience just isn't here for sports-related shows? The last ones I remember are One Tree Hill and Friday Night Lights, but even then basketball was rarely the main storyline on One Tree Hill though Friday Night Lights did have more of a balance. As a person who loves swimming and of course football I highly enjoy these International Tournaments and 3 games a day is an absolute delight, but having said that I don't really understand why so many people are glued to their screens for it. You don't really get this type of reaction for cricket, tennis or even swimming, so I guess International Tournaments just have some magic to them that people can't resist. As for the World Cup, so far it has been a magnificently fascinating tournament. I have up supporting England years ago because it's really nothing but disappointment and I get far more enjoyment out of rooting for Spain because the way they play is beautiful, and I'm just basking in the fact I can actually enjoy every game that is on (with club football I obviously support Manchester United and Atletico Madrid which I wouldn't advise people to do unless you've got a strong stomach) so it's nice to just be able to watch games stress free.

BW: I think the reason is that sports fans vary throughout the world. For example, I am from the US and football to us is vastly different from the international term of football (which makes me wonder why my country even called it football when they barely use their feet... But I digress). So I think it is hard for some shows to have international appeal if people don't really like or are familiar with certain sports.

EC: Everything I know about normal football I learned from watching VICTORY (Sylvester Stallone, Michael Caine, and Pelé). As I live in the USA, I do associate the term with the touchdown style football more. My "sports", however, are figure skating, tennis, and gymnastics.

2. While we witnessed a positive effect of social media with the uncancelling of Timeless and Lucifer in the last two season, but we also see the cruelty with the current Millie Bobby Brown situation? Where is the line and how to prevent people from stepping over it?

MI: The harassment of MBB should never have happened in the first place, it got too out of control and there comes a point where you have to stop and think about what you're doing. She's 14 and it just feels completely unnecessary and harsh to make up false stories like that especially when someone has to shut down their social media. Banning/suspending the relevant accounts seems to be the only way of clamping down on it, but it's not a perfect method and not everyone can be caught, so it's an area that needs to be addressed. It's also worth mentioning the Kelly Marie Tran incident here too - bullying is never acceptable especially when both Brown and Tran have been completely undeserving of it, especially when in Tran's case, her character Rose is one of the best additions to the Star Wars universe that we've had in a while - and here's an unpopular opinion, she's a better character than Boba Fett, who is overrated in the fandom. And Eleven is awesome as well.

NK: Since joining Twitter last year, I have witnessed some of the vilest harassment of people that I have ever seen, and I don't think it will ever stop. With SM, we have access to people that we never thought we could have access to- our favorite actors, writers, directors, and we also have access to those we despise. With that access should come some level of civility and responsibility, but of course, it doesn't. Harassing someone with "I worship you" tweets is creepy and over the top just like the hate tweets are.
The mash-up of entitlement, rabid entertainment culture, out of control teens, out of control politicians, and lack of impulse control on the part of just about everyone gives us the current social media environment. The line is eradicated.

SJ: Call me a spoilsport but I have always been of the opinion that social media was a mistake. Sure it is nice to be able to connect and talk with people you wouldn't have been able to connect with otherwise & I have made some great friends through it, but it has also brought out the worst in people. If you don't agree with someone instead of just moving on with your life, you're issuing death threats along with much worse, and I really don't think anyone who is in the public eye should be on social media. If you're not dealing with fans stalking your private life and outing your partner as a cheater & the demanding that you dump them, then you're dealing with people shaming you for how you look, the homophobic meme with poor old Millie and there has also been a bit of controversy in the British soap world over red carpet debacles. I grew up on the days of having to write letters & send gifts to PO Boxes that were then properly vetted and the stuff that was ok was passed over to the person in question who'd then write a thank you note, and the stuff that was bad was chucked or the police involved if it was anything too murky. We still had the high of knowing that our favorite person knew of our existence, and could still brag to our friends on being given a signed photo or whatnot. But having that intermediary of sorts was healthy & I think that's what's missing with society these days. I don't at all blame some high profile people from staying away from social media & of course not reading the newspapers etc, because it can be so poisonous. Some fans just have such an entitlement, believing because they're a viewer or paying for a convention, then that gives them the right to say anything they like either at or to the person in question and that's just not on. Again in British soaps, Bhavna who is an actress on Coronation Street tries to interact with the fans where she can, and she had a fan take issue with her using an emoji or not giving them the same level of greeting that she'd given to another fan. Completely and utterly ridiculous, but still Bhavna apologized and tried not to make a big deal out of the situation, whilst the person had to deal with rightfully being called out.

I also don't like fan campaigns at all because they can be extremely aggressive, and already we're seeing some involved with Cloak & Dagger being attacked by fans of other shows, fans spamming up social media with hashtags & being quite rude if they don't get the reply that they deem suitable.

JC: It's actually really not that difficult. Promoting your favorite shows to save it is fine. I love it when people come together like that. Attacking anyone, especially minors online are not. Nor is using them to spread hate. Would you say it to them in person? No? Then what makes you think it's okay to say online? Right now there really aren't that many consequences for cyberbullying, not unless it ends in tragedy. But there need to be consequences otherwise this will only get worse.

BW: I am not sure how to define the line and have to be followed because it does need to be drawn. Some people in fandoms seem to think that their hatred doesn't make it to the person they targeted and we know that is not true. It is even more tragic to me for Millie because these trolls apparently don't remember she is only 14... She is still a child and they are using her image as a 'joke' and it is not funny. No one of any age should be attacked, but especially not child actors, that should be an unspoken line.

EC: Is it possible to prevent social media bullies from crossing the line? I'm afraid not. People who want to be the worst will persist in being the worst. There's no way to be sure who they are or where they are or how old they are. The only thing that celebrities can do to protect themselves is to hire people to manage their social media accounts so they can block malicious individuals. Sadly, for people who can't afford a buffer, they have to protect themselves. Which isn't always possible for them to do. I shudder to think of all the children using social media and seeing and receiving such vile things. Some responsibility should be laid at the feet of the companies who run these platforms. There never will be a perfect solution though. It's simply up to us as individuals to spread better things, as a way to counter others.

3. Our Episode Cup started last Monday, which episode got snubbed from a Nomination and why?

MK: This year`s Competition is very well balanced out and not all episodes can get a place in the Poll. My personal favorite which didn`t make it is For The People`s "18 Miles Outside of Roanoke". In general For The People is underrated and the way they approached their character development is very impressive. Their strong feminist approach to storytelling without forcing it and giving these young female actors space to shine was impeccable. Major kudos to Brit Robertson and Susannah Flood for making this episode memorable.

LS: The best B99 episode, in my opinion, wasn’t nominated! It was also the best episode of the year, as per the STV staff, so I’m not sure what happened. “Game Night” was the most beautifully written and acted piece of the year, with Stephanie Beatriz anchoring the show to highs and emotions are so rarely seen on TV before. Bis are on the rise, and it’s because of this storyline that there is hope for beautiful representation and diversity. “The Box” also not being nominated was a bit odd, same with “99”, but hey. Maybe it’s a blessing in disguise since “Jake & Amy” was taken out by an episode of The Flash.
Every episode of BoJack Horseman could’ve been nominated this year and I wouldn’t have been mad, except for maybe the fracking episode. BoJack is such underrated TV, seriously doing what no other show is or ever could dream of pulling off. That’s also probably a blessing since the incredible and beautiful “Time’s Arrow” was faced against something from the Poop Place in the first round. Shitty randomization!

Steven Universe also had an amazing outing this year with “A Single Pale Rose” and a twist á la “The Ricklantis Mixup” (I’ll get to that one later). Even if a lot of people called it and theorized about it for months now, it was still executed to perfection and seemed to be like the best episode of the show in a long time. Happy to see it found its stride again. I wanna see more like this.

Oh, “The Ricklantis Mixup”. You don’t need the recognition here to be realized as a masterpiece. Everyone and their dog have already written a fangirling thinkpiece about the themes and dialogue and direction of this episode, so I don’t need to rehash anything. But it did save an otherwise dull season. And it was so much better than it had any right to be.

I was this close to submitting two episodes from Schitt’s Creek this year. “The Barbecue” had probably my favorite scene of the entire year, that being the fallout of said BBQ and the immediate talk Patrick gave David. They were the best couple of the entire year and they deserve every ounce of praise because the world needs more of them. And the finale, “Singles Week”, just like last year’s finale, was incredible too. Unexpected pairings and scenes led to extraordinary work from everyone involved. Annie Murphy really proved herself this year too. Everyone on this show deserves everything good in the world.

Saved the best for last, One Day at a Time had SO MANY episodes worthy of mention, and considering two of its Season 1 episodes made it to the comp last year, I have to wonder if people just forgot about Season 2, or they slept on it, either result being just as infuriating. “Hello, Penelope” was my pick, as someone living through the depression and exploring medication as a means to cope, this episode spoke to me on so many levels. It was written with such immense accuracy and reverence it singlehandedly gave Justina Machado 10 Emmys. Also the POTM for January, which I got to write about, and that was fun. I also saw a bunch of people vote for “Not Yet”, which, again, what happened here? These are better than pretty much every episode in the comp.

MI: The main absentee I felt from this episode cup was Twin Peaks and its lack of presence was definitely felt. I understand it's not a massively popular show on SpoilerTV, but Gotta Light getting snubbed is absolutely criminal. It is arguably one of the greatest, most unique and surreal episodes of television ever and is like nothing else I've ever seen. I could have picked multiple Twin Peaks episodes to fit the bill, but Gotta Light not getting in was the most glaring omission of them all. I'm going to say watch it if you haven't seen the show before just to get a sample of how weird and awesome it is - it will blow your mind.

SJ: I didn't submit any entries this year as I'm far too behind on TV shows, but if I had then any episode of Dynasty would've been a contender for me. The show is just so gloriously trashy, with some excellent character development and moments that leave me absolutely shook. Like I tuned into this show just for the sake of it after a certain someone was constantly telling me that it was awesome, and now I will not stop until everyone gives this show a try because it is so good. I also would've probably nominated an episode from the back half of iZombie's 4th season because it absolutely slew my emotions. All of the cast was on top form, as was the writing and I did legit cry quite a few times whilst watching. I think though when it comes to these competitions it's not so much about whether an episode is good or not, about the fandom that the show has. If you're a big fandom? You're getting loads of entries even if one could say it's not quite deserved. If you're a small fandom? You'll be lucky to get one entry and be spending all your time proclaiming you've been robbed.

EC: When Calls the Heart's season 5 finale "Close to My Heart" truly impressed me. It's a typically lighthearted family show, not Emmy material on average or anything like that, but warm and gentle and focused on the bonds of community and the families we create for ourselves. The death of a favorite character, due to the actor leaving the show, was very emotional. When Calls the Heart handled the grief process beautifully, showing it largely through the eyes of the town's children. That really helped younger viewers, while also packing a gut punch. At the same time, it brought the show full circle in a way. A character who began her journey on the show lifting up widows and fatherless children is now one of them. On paper, that sounds a bit depressing. But the emotional payoff from the friendships the show has developed among the people of Hope Valley (especially the women) managed to extract the "collateral beauty" from a devastating twist.

4. Supergirl did a major supporting cast shake-up going into season 4. How important are side characters for you? And do you see cast changes as refreshing or disruptive?

MK: Considering the small amount of Winn and the filler screen time Mon El got this season, these changes shouldn`t really be noticed. Still not seeing them for their occasional cameo will feel free. But I support the general acknowledgment that the show does need this change and open itself up more and hopefully grow with new characters and stories. General cast changes depending on how they are handled. Grey`s Anatomy is the best proof how some cast additions work out and others don`t, the story and characters introduced have to feel natural and unforced that is half the work. Also not rushing new characters into ships is always a good move.

MI: Cast changes, depending on how they are handled, can be a refreshing boost to the show or can kill it off completely. When you take out key players, for example, Nicole Beharie leaving her own show, Sleepy Hollow, it ruins it completely, but when you can find a good way to work it into the show like regeneration in Doctor Who, it provides a great excuse to have a new actor take over the role and has, in Doctor Who's case, led to the series getting rejuvenated multiple times. I dropped Supergirl along with Arrow and The Flash at the start of their respective seasons last year, but this cast shakeup actually has me interested in going back and watching it again now that they've removed Mon-El.

SJ: How can I see these changes as anything but good?? Supergirl has spent the last 2 seasons going downhill for a number of reasons. Chris Wood is a mighty fine actor, but the way he was shoehorned into the show and took over the main plot was not a good look at all. I get The CW likes its actors but really, give him a new show or take him back to the Vampire Diaries world with The Original's spin-off. Do not shoehorn him or any actor into any show because it just does not work! I stopped watching the show at the end of s2 and have absolutely no regrets. I don't at all agree with the root they've gone down with Alex. I don't know how anyone can call her a bad-ass DEO agent, when she basically spent 99% of the season babysitting Ruby and I really don't like this notion that in order for a woman to have a child she can't have a top-tier job. Here's a genius idea, let her have both! The show very much needs to go back to basics, which means having Kara/Alex at the forefront of the show which has been missing for the last 2 seasons. Bringing Jesse on as a regular fills me with joy because he's a fantastic actor and Brainiac really grew on me. Downgrading Jeremy Jordan to a recurring status I can't really have any complaints about since the guy has basically been wasted on the show for 3yrs. They just need to get back to the basics. Kara/Alex at the forefront of the show, Alex heavily involved in the action, a good enough villain played by a good enough actor, less filler, less crap we don't care about and keeping the romance storylines on the low. At the end of the day, the show is supposed to be about Supergirl aka Kara Danvers. No-one else and that's what the show and to an extent viewers need to remember because I've lost count of the amount of shipper related things I've come across and people saying they're boycotting a show because their fav has gone when their fav wasn't even an original cast member.

Having said all of this though, I'm not sure whether the cast and BTS changes will be enough to reinvigorate the show and the audience. It just feels like a move that has come far too late. I don't think next season will be the last because The CW has extremely low expectations by default and the show could be getting 0.2's and still be on the air. But I think TPTB need to look at the criticism which has been aired their way, actually take it on board and work to make the show as good as it was on CBS. Because honestly, at this moment in time, if I never heard of Supergirl again, I feel as though nothing of value would be lost and that saddens me because I absolutely loved this show when it began.

JC: In this case, the show really needed it. They have a habit of giving side characters more screen time than the actual main characters. I'm hoping the show will go back to its season 1 format (more family, less romance). As for in general, I do tend to get attached to side characters sometimes and it sucks when they suddenly vanish again. I loved the new additions to Legends of Tomorrow this season but it sucks that Wally will be gone again next season. On NCIS, the cast shake-ups were refreshing. I guess it really depends on the show and the chemistry between the characters.

EC: Oh, Supergirl. I looked forward to watching this show with my sister when I heard about it back before season 1. So I have an emotional bond to it (she was never able to watch it with me) that carried me through season 1's bubblegum hopscotch phase. And I only really cared about Alex and Kara's bond. It wasn't until the second season side characters really became a thing. Most shows I watch it feels like have all main characters, except Riverdale and The 100 and The Last Ship. I find that side characters fall into one of two camps on most shows. They are background adornment only for us to forever imagine if they could have more interesting stories, OR they grow into main characters with meaningful connections of their own. Supergirl is an odd show, because it takes it either rushes its side characters into bigger roles (see Mon El and Kara starting to date very quickly, Kara and Lena becoming friends overnight) or teases us with a glimpse of something more but never builds on it (always Winn). The bottom line is that because these characters are never properly developed I don't get attached to them. I appreciate them while they are around, but I do not miss them when they disappear (whether permanently or for a single episode).

That is a wrap guys! Ur turn now, come and join the discussion down below. Till next week. . .

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