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SpoilerTV's Weekly Round Table: 75th Edition

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Hello and welcome to a new edition of SpoilerTV`s Weekly Round Table. Joining me this week is Ellys Cartin (EC), Milo, Jamie Coudeville, Marko Pekic & me (Yon). You just have to sit back enjoy the read and join the discussion in the comment section down below.

The CW recent caused a massive shock by being the first Network to renew ALL of its shows. With a number of pilots in contention for the 2019/2020 season, which pilots do you think have the best chance of making it and how are The CW going to balance all of these shows? An extra night of programming? Shortened season lengths?

EC: The CW often stands out from the pack because they have this rare love for all their content creators and consumers. Still, even their biggest fan couldn't have seen this thrilling announcement coming. Part of that adoration for their viewers means delivering new content, hence they will still order multiple pilots to series. Batwoman's official order is a mere formality. I wouldn't be surprised to see every other pilot get ordered. The CW is aiming to deliver a buffet of diverse content year round. I expect a number of shortened seasons, which is a very good thing in terms of storytelling and pacing.

Milo: The CW's love and care for its shows will never not be welcoming especially after all the standard treatment that other networks don't seem to care that much about their own shows (cough, Netflix, cough). Batwoman seems like a no brainier (and probably the network show that I'm most excited for out of all of them), and a new Nancy Drew would be cool to see, but given that a lot of heavy hitters like Arrow and Supernatural have ended for the CW recently they're going to be feeling the extra pressure to replace them with quality new material and I'm expecting big things from their new slate.

Jamie Coudeville: I haven't really kept track of the potential new shows. But obviously the Batwoman one (already confirmed, I believe) and the Riverdale spin off seem like the most likely options. As for how they'll balance all these shows, I doubt they'll add a new night of programming. The only night that's left is Saturday, I believe and rarely anyone airs shows on that night (for some reason that I don't understand). They do have a few shows that are ending so that might take a bit of the load off, but I mostly hope they'll go for shortened season length. I am so sick of those 20 or more episode seasons. The storylines move way too slowly. But I doubt they'll step away from that, I assume they'll just move things around more like with Legends and Black Lightning. And they keep saying they want to invest in their summer programming so perhaps some shows will move there like The 100 did.

Marko Pekic: CW did something unprecedented so far and it shows how strong the network is via delayed viewing and streaming. While most of the shows will just have 13-16 episodes, the issue with that is that there are bigger hiatuses between season. It will be interesting to see how the network will balance all the shows and schedule their new entries.

Youtube this week announced that Cobra Kai has been renewed for a 3rd season, and that its premium programming platform will soon be free with ads to support. Do you think this is a wise move on their part as they try to keep up in the battle of the streamer & what type of shows would you like Youtube to make in the future?

EC: I visit YouTube quite often to listen to music, but they had no real skin in this streaming competition. Now with their shows being accessible to a wider audience, they might actually make a dent.

Milo: I'd like them to make more of what they're doing right now, I've only seen Cobra Kai (I need to watch Season 2, but LOVED Season 1) from their slate of YouTube originals but it's been a really entertaining series and making shows free is a wise move, with plenty of promotion it can reach an even larger audience. Having too many streaming platforms means not all of them are going to emerge on top (you only need to look at the struggles DC Universe is having at the moment) so doing something that stands out from the pack is a good move.

Jamie: Coudeville: I had no idea their service would become free to use (with ads). I love that, their shows are otherwise so difficult to find. As for whether or not this is a good idea financially, I have no idea but I would imagine that they did the necessary research before coming to this decision.

Marko Pekic: I havent seen any Youtube shows but them breaking their system so soon wasnt something anyone expected. How they will finance their shows and how it will impact their development slate is very uncertain. It is interesting though and seeing as DC Universe has issues as well proves that creating a successful streaming service isn`t that easy. Netflix really worked their behinds off to get where they are so the others should have a proper plan a quality before entering such a great adventure.

This month is of course May sweeps which means we're in for some big TV reveals. Some have already taken place but what other surprises do you think May sweeps has in store for us and is May sweeps still the big TV event that it once was?

Yon: I think a decade ago May Sweeps was one of the biggest events of the primetime TV calendar, but now it just feels like an incredibly cheap ratings ploy. In a separate discussion a few days ago, someone commented on a big flashback week that a British soap has done and their dismay that the acting in some of the storylines was so good that they were sad the flashback week hadn't been planned to coordinate better with awards because they feared by the time the next round of awards came round people will have forgotten all about this week and the reply to this was that no show should plan their storylines around awards because it can lead to the writing suffering and continuity errors. I think this same logic can be applied to May sweeps. If when the season is first being plotted out plots reaching their high point naturally coincides with May sweeps then it's a happy marriage, but most times this isn't the case. Things come out of nowhere so the showrunners can congratulate themselves on shocking the audience & participating in the post episode interviews where they claim everything has a plan, but the follow through just ends up being incredibly disappointing because it's obvious they've just done something for the shock factor.

Likewise I think any showrunner that ends their season on a cliffhanger to try and entice the Network into renewing them, deserves to not only have their show cancelled but never work in the business ever again. In the past there might've been brief occasions where ending on a cliffhanger convinced the Network to have a heart and renew, but they know they don't have to do that anymore because another 20 shows are lined up on the conveyor belt, all desperately waiting to be given a chance, bring a new audience in with a fresh take on a new idea & some of those showrunners are smart enough to wrap everything up. If you're truly incapable of plotting shocks naturally & resolving 99% of your storylines whilst leaving crumbs for where things could go, then you really shouldn't be in charge of a show or writing scripts, because you're clearly inadequate at your job. It's emotional manipulation at its finest and the crew BTS + the loyal fans who fall in love with the characters and storylines are the ones that I feel sorry for most when this happens.

EC: May Sweeps means that shows should be building to climaxes that pay off the entire season in big, satisfying ways and/or laying the groundwork for next season's stories. Some shows will end on weak glitzy cliffhangers. No good show will end on one of those. That kind of ending says "We didn't make a good enough show this year for it to withstand summer on its own merits, so we hope this will keep you talking about it." Don't be THAT show, people. I don't want to see shock deaths or "Is this person going to survive?" stuff. I want big emotional explosions that will either reduce me into a pile of feelings because they so admirably wrap up the stories you've been telling all season OR big emotional explosions that will leave the characters with half a season's worth of cleanup to do.....and I mean interesting cleanup...not blah blah messed up time again and erased someone's baby from existence and now everyone hates them but we're not supposed to. (Climbs off soapbox)

Jamie Coudeville: I used to follow the May Sweeps scoring card very closely but after a few seasons it becomes less impressive. At this point I kind of know what to expect from May. Lots of deaths, with about half just for shock value, lots of couples getting together, .... Honestly, I'm kind of over it. I would like it much more if shows used these kinds of twists earlier in the season, it keeps us on our toes. I used to love it when TVD ended every episode on a cliffhanger.

Marko Pekic: May sweeps has changed a lot and it feels quite a bit less eventful as it did the previous seasons. It has a lot to do with the 22-ish episode orders which are quite outdated as the quality of writing is just not what it was before. The build-up just doesnt feel like it did before. I am sure the upcoming finales will contain some major cliffhangers yet it doesnt feel that intense like years before.

This weeks episode of Dynasty saw Alexis depart to get more work done on her face in an attempt to look less like Fallon. What have you made of Elizabeth Gillies temporarily in the dual role? Was it a step too far by the show or just soapy enough, and do you think they will now recast the role for the 3rd season or is Alexis out the picture for good?

Yon: Where do I even start with this?! Dynasty is extremely lucky to have an actress like Elizabeth Gillies on the show, because there's not a lot of actors out there that could pull off such a ridiculous plot and walk away with any pride. The writers were also smart enough to have the characters all acknowledge the fact that Alexis looked exactly like Fallon, whilst also taking the opportunity to use this bit of facial surgery to show how disturbed Adam is, touch on Alexis relationship with Fallon and know that a gag like this can only go on for so long, so shipped Alexis off to go and get more work done which will surely result in a proper recast for the character. Accomplishing all of those things is no easy feat so Dynasty should be credited for it. The show is never going to be a powerhouse ratings wise, critical darling, or become an overnight sensation, for most people it's either a guilty pleasure or a show to mock, but occasionally it is capable of surprising, especially in a situation where a decision had to be made quite late in the day with Nicolette having to leave the show so abruptly. Long term fans of Elizabeth know exactly what she's capable of acting wise and if Dynasty is useful for anything, it'll hopefully be opening her up to a whole new audience with some of the stuff she's pulled off.

EC: If you haven't been watching this show for Elizabeth Gillies since the beginning, odds are you're not still watching it. I am waiting for this season to hit Netflix, but I for one think that having Gillies take over the role was the most awesome choice they could have made.

Jamie Coudeville: I have to admit, I hated this storyline. I really enjoyed the show's first season but I have been very disappointed by the second. I just feel like they stepped over the line between guilty pleasure and soap opera drama. And I believe a recast was already announced. But I heard that the actress left to take care of a sick family member so I kind of feel like they should leave the possibility for her to return (unless the actress specifically stated she didn't want to return).

Marko Pekic: It felt like a relatively interesting creative choice. Yet it didn`t play out as well as the writers thought. The writers were in a time squeeze and did what they felt most comfortable. Replacing Alexis with a time bomb over their head would be pushing it so it worked for this couple of episodes. I look forward to a new or old Fallon as we enter season 3

That's a wrap on this weeks WRT. Feel free to sound off with all your thoughts in the comments below, and adios! Until we read again....

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