Despite the countless TV series of which the television landscape is dotted, each new release carries with it a great number of expectations. In recent years there have been many TV series brought to the small screen after impressive advertising campaigns that have made countless promises, only to finally present something that has disappointed expectations. After all, it is well known that every TV series that has been well spent on represents a real bet on the part of the network and the production company, and a bet does not always lead to the desired results. In the case of the TV series we are going to talk about today, for example, expectations were disappointed despite an excellent start.
Unlike the TV series we have discussed in this article, which turned out to be beautiful despite an (almost) bad pilot, in this article we will review TV series that have probably spent all their efforts (and money) in the pilot episode (and maybe in those just following) and then slipping into boredom or a rambling development. It is no coincidence that most of these TV series have not managed to go beyond the first or second season, being canceled or simply forgotten despite a great start. Proof that first impressions aren’t always the right ones.
1) The Third Day
Highly anticipated 2020 miniseries in co-production HBO and Sky. Jude Law’s presence alone had made it one of last year’s event series, the delay of its release due to the Covid-19 pandemic only increased the hype. Result: when the pilot of The Third Day arrived on the small screen last October 19, no one was excited anymore and the excellent first episode of the miniseries left everyone enraptured. But excluding the English key and more lively reinterpretation of the disturbing Midsommar, at the end of the six episodes the series did not leave much. Plot already seen and structure too bold. An excellent start but an experience that at the end of the fair left the spectators with at most one new piece of information: in England there is a tiny island called Osea Island.
2) Turn Up Charlie
And again from His Majesty’s land comes another TV series of recent years that promised well in its pilot only to turn out to be a colossal waste of time. Turn Up Charlie is a 2019 comedy which, although it did not propose itself as a masterpiece of the year, promised well in its first episode. Vibes alla BoJack Horseman in formato Idris Elba, in which the DJ’s job replaces that of the Hollywood actor, in full European style, and in which the protagonist is not, after all, a total wreck like Netflix’s anthropomorphic horse. The story was there, the context too. What was missing after the first episode was simply ALL THE REST. The series of Idris Elba and Gary Reich eventually becomes a soup of clichés and meaningless subplots written by someone as gifted as the writers of The Eyes of the Heart.
Quantico may be, to be fair, one of the biggest regrets on this list. The ABC TV series has been widely appreciated starting from its pilot, a well-balanced and structured episode to give hope for the best. Quantico’s storyline was interesting, the pacing kept up the attention and presence of Priyanka Chopra it’s always nice to see. The first season flies, the second nì, lin the third he shoots himself in the foot ending up in the crosshairs of the network that doesn’t think twice before dropping the ax of the end on the neck of the series. Goodbye new FBI recruits, it was good while you were making it.
4) The Following
And speaking of the FBI and regrets, one cannot fail to mention The Following, a TV series that has the police element in common with the previous one we discussed and the final defeat that came despite a start with a bang. The dark tones, the literary element and an extraordinary Kevin Bacon, give salt to the plot and made The Following one of the great surprises of 2013. With The Following it can be said that Fox has somehow been a forerunner in that vein of TV series starring FBI agents particularly interested in the psychological profiles of serial killers (think of Mindhunter, which came out a few years later). The promises were all there and the pilot of the series made them even more usual, with a story that started with a bang that consolidated the attention and curiosity of the spectators. A real pity that it was lost over time, disappointing the expectations of fans now bored by a somewhat rambling evolution towards the end.
5) The Romanoffs
Long awaited TV evenings born from the pen of Matthew Weiner himself who gave us Mad Men, probably one of the best TV series ever written. The showrunner, a veteran of the success starring John Ham, took his time at the time to work on the eight episodes of the anthological series that tells the story of alleged descendants of the Romanoffs. In fact, the miniseries, released in October 2018 on Amazon Prime, speaks of such people. But after an excellent first episode, followed by two more of great quality, the series slips into a certain repetitivenesswhich despite the anthological nature of the series ends up emerging with a certain force, leaving the viewer in the grip of boredom and heaviness.
6) The Passage
The TV series that follows the events of the mysterious and disturbing Project Noah, represents another great regret of the serial world of recent years and is based on the fantasy horror novel The passageat Justin Cronin, a genre that usually finds some success on both the small and the big screen. Yet Liz Heldens’ TV series, despite a strong and powerful start, failed to maintain high expectations placed on a series that started from an interesting subject and a promising airing.
7) Love Life
Another TV series from which much more would have been expected is the one that follows Darby Carter’s love life over the years. HBO Max’s first TV series (perhaps another factor behind the high expectations placed on the series), starts with a nice and interesting pilot episode that seems to give hope for the best exactly as promised by the advertising campaign of the series. Instead Love Life turned out to be more lukewarm than we would have liked, and the excellent debut remains – towards the end – just a memory.
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