Wednesday, March 13, 2013


I don't normally like to talk about television completely subjectively. Mostly because it opens a lot of room for people to argue with me, and I don't have patience for that (when obviously I am right, duh). But I will now. And I'll preface it by saying that I've read pieces on this topic before, but I'm still writing this as a 100% opinion piece (not that the SupernaturalShake is the most sophisticated piece of evidence a person could use to back up an argument).

TV shows that are based on the supernatural will always bring more depth than realistic dramas. It's my experience that this is true, and if you ask any of my friends, I watch a hell of a lot of TV, so I know what I'm talking about (wow, this blog post is coming out sounding SO arrogant).

A lot of people scoff at the fantasy or sci-fi genres, especially when you bring up show titles like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, (as much as I wouldn't have it any other way- seriously Joss, you could've done better with that, really). Fantasy or sci-fi are not mature enough, they say. It's all about the monsters and gore, they say. 

They're kinda wrong. Very wrong, in my opinion. I will never know as much about Tami Taylor as I do about Buffy Anne Summers. (That's a great place to start, actually. Does Tami Taylor have a middle name, even?) Seeley Booth's PTSD-y past will never reach the level of detail and knowledge fans have of Spike's scarred and tortured depths (or Angel's*, for that matter). These realistic characters will never be pushed to their limit the way the supernatural ones are. As stand-alone shows, Friday Night Lights and Bones are damn good at developing their characters (FNL more than Bones), but when they're compared to Buffy, Angel, and Supernatural, their characters just seem...shallow. 

Don't get me wrong. I love these shows. They, and other true-to-life shows, are so incredibly well-written that I hesitated to even write this post. Let me stress that I am not putting them down in any way. But genre shows have always left me, as a viewer, with more of a sense of their characters than other shows. You know exactly how far these people will go and how far they have gone, and you will never doubt their consistency (unless Steven Moffat suddenly takes over the show).

I simply think we don't know even a fraction of who characters on a true-to-life show really are. I can know how Tami and Eric Taylor would react to Julie playing hooky, but I'll never know them to the depths of their soul the way I know Dean Winchester. Hell, I don't think we know who we are- human beings are capable of so much more than we know. And the only television shows or literature that prove this to us are of the supernatural persuasion.

"Nothing in the world is the way it ought to be. It's harsh and cruel. But that's why there's us. Champions. It doesn't matter where we come from, what we've done or suffered, or even if we make a difference. We live as though the world was what it should be- to show it what it can be." How often is something like this said by a character in a regular drama? How often do regular television characters inspire you to be better, do better, save the world or even just your little corner of it? (I'm genuinely curious about that. If someone like Meredith Grey or Juliette Barnes has ever inspired you to save the world, drop a comment and let me know.) Who knows? Maybe I'm just a world-class geek who grew up on Power Rangers, The Chronicles of Narnia, Charmed, and Harry Potter.

Oh, and P.S.- I wouldn't have it any other way. (In fact, if I had a TARDIS I'd probably go back in time and give 12-year-old me my DVD's and files of Buffy, Angel, Dollhouse, Firefly, Doctor Who, Supernatural...oh, you get the point).

*Seeley and Angel are both played by the same actor, David Boreanaz

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