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Regular British TV so dull after watching US series.


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Old 12-01-2013, 00:06
jules1000
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Anyone else find this? Having watched many seasons of Dexter Sopranos Breaking Bad. I struggle with mainstream british tv. It just seems so braindead dull. So dumbed down it is almost impossible to watch. Well actually impossible.
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Old 12-01-2013, 01:13
MoreTears
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Anyone else find this? Having watched many seasons of Dexter Sopranos Breaking Bad. I struggle with mainstream british tv. It just seems so braindead dull. So dumbed down it is almost impossible to watch. Well actually impossible.
Well, you use the word "mainstream." I don't think "mainstream American TV" -- never mind the mainstream TV from another country -- can really compete with the top US cable shows. The Sopranos and Breaking Bad are just not a realistic standard to aspire to. I watch a number of current British shows that I would count as superior to a pretty long list of American network programmes. Britain has the talent to make great TV, but there are definite financial limitations that are difficult to overcome. And that is not just about budgets per episode. The total number of new dramas that start in the UK every year is small compared to the avalanche the US gets, and limits on number of episodes per series are a problem. But the way I think of it is that the UK TV industry really does punch above its weight. Coming second to the TV industry in a country with five times your population is no disgrace. The TV industry in my country, Canada, is a lot worse than yours, I'd say.
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Old 12-01-2013, 01:33
Cheri
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I disagree, I moved from Atlanta to England and I find the TV over here way better.

I went back to USA to see family in December and Sky+d some shows to watch when I got back to UK. Recently I watched The Poison Tree, Loving Miss Hatto, Restless and they were so much better than what I had watched over in USA last month.

Whilst I like shows like Dexter, The Mentalist, kind of liking Perception as well, Uk shows are better to me. They aren't as tedious and All-American (or British in this case) Family Friendly as USA shows are. Like y'all can handle interracial relationships, y'all don't need to hire certain ethnicity in shows just for their stereotypes, I watch shows over here where the minority cast members are just normal heroes or villains, like there isn't a novelty act attached to them. Also I love how free and uncensored y'all are compared to USA. Things aren't that big a deal to you and you go right for the taboo/controversial stuff. I love it.

Y'all have me intrigued and clutching my pearls all at the same time.
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Old 12-01-2013, 01:49
MoreTears
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...they aren't as tedious and All-American...Family Friendly as USA shows are....Also I love how free and uncensored y'all are compared to USA.
See, this is an example of an American not having any idea about cable in the US. There are many Americans who have never heard of let alone seen what many Brits here would consider the better American shows.
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Old 12-01-2013, 02:00
Cheri
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See, this is an example of an American not having any idea about cable in the US. There are many Americans who have never heard of let alone seen what many Brits here would consider the better American shows.

Girl good day. I have cable, I just don't think everything America puts out is fantastic because it has more money thrown at it. British TV is better. Deal with it.

Also, how can you, sat in Canada, know what I watch and have in ATL? You're doing the most. Let it go.
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Old 12-01-2013, 02:45
MoreTears
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Girl good day. I have cable, I just don't think everything America puts out is fantastic because it has more money thrown at it. British TV is better. Deal with it.

Also, how can you, sat in Canada, know what I watch and have in ATL? You're doing the most. Let it go.
Not a girl, darling. And your talking nonsense about "family-friendly" TV indicates your ignorance of all the non-family friendly, uncensored shows on American cable. In other words, sitting here in Canada, I don't know what you are watching, but I know what you're NOT watching -- the US TV that is a lot better than what Britain is making. Deal with it.
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Old 12-01-2013, 06:26
zwixxx
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One thing the US doesn't do well, or maybe do at all, is the comedian panel quiz show - like Have I Got News, Mock The Week, etc etc etc. Here in the UK we seem to have about 730 comedians who make the rounds on all these shows and you'da thought the US would be similarly blessed with such a load of jokers that they could fill a whole bunch of such shows, but iiuc no, nope, nada. Yes they do do shows like the Whitney/Chelsea chat show and that Roast The World show but the comedians get like 3mins and they're gone. Shame on you US, for shame.

Of course all their other shows, action, sit coms, dramas are freaky awesome.
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Old 12-01-2013, 06:45
Tassium
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There is a definite female bias in UK mainstream TV.

For most of the history of TV in the UK things were more balanced, somewhere in the 90s it started to go the one way.

So I think that women will probably get more out of UK TV than men do nowadays.


The US still seems to have a balance in it's free-to-air channels but I cannot be sure since I don't live there.
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Old 12-01-2013, 06:55
MoreTears
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One thing the US doesn't do well, or maybe do at all, is the comedian panel quiz show - like Have I Got News, Mock The Week, etc etc etc.
That is indeed a type of show that doesn't exist in the US. For all I know maybe it is uniquely British. I recently read on DS that the producers of Have I Got News For You have tried a couple of times to launch a US version of the show, but they failed both times, and now they are trying a third time. The US obviously has plenty of stand-up comics. I think US TV executives are simply not convinced US viewers would be interested in this type of programme.
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Old 12-01-2013, 07:11
Digital Sid
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Hasn't this topic been done to death? Comparing premium, niche, big budget cable shows made in Hollywood, with writers and actors sourced from across the world, and the massive US network output, who's broadcasters can afford to, and do, pull and replace any failing shows after just a few episodes, with something that works better without any hassle, to the mostly publicly funded output of a small country in Europe that doesn't even have the population let alone the initial resources, to make a US-like premium cable system work, and regularly, through lower budgets to pay them through, looses top talent pretty quickly after unearthing it, to the big budget US shows of which you speak, is ridiculous. The UK (or at least the BBC and Channel 4, ITV seem happy to just pump out ratings bankers and tired but tested procedurals, though they do seem to be slowly coming round) produces far more quality television than most more comparable countries do (i.e. those with remotely similar population numbers, in the same continent, with at least slightly similar size economies), or in fact any country outside North America.

Only Brits (and republican US politicians when they're in opposition) moan endlessly about "only" being No. 2 at something, as if being No. 2 to anyone (even a country about the size of the continent we're in, with six times the population and countless times the resources) makes us a third world dictatorship .
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Old 12-01-2013, 07:47
MoreTears
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Hasn't this topic been done to death? Comparing premium, niche, big budget cable shows made in Hollywood, with writers and actors sourced from across the world, and the massive US network output, who's broadcasters can afford to, and do, pull and replace any failing shows after just a few episodes, with something that works better without any hassle, to the mostly publicly funded output of a small country in Europe that doesn't even have the population let alone the initial resources, to make a US-like premium cable system work, and regularly, through lower budgets to pay them through, looses top talent pretty quickly after unearthing it, to the big budget US shows of which you speak, is ridiculous. The UK (or at least the BBC and Channel 4, ITV seem happy to just pump out ratings bankers and tired but tested procedurals, though they do seem to be slowly coming round) produces far more quality television than most more comparable countries do (i.e. those with remotely similar population numbers, in the same continent, with at least slightly similar size economies), or in fact any country outside North America.

Only Brits (and republican US politicians when they're in opposition) moan endlessly about "only" being No. 2 at something, as if being No. 2 to anyone (even a country about the size of the continent we're in, with six times the population and countless times the resources) makes us a third world dictatorship .
Exactly -- to pretty well all points.
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Old 12-01-2013, 08:24
Fairy9178
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Lots of young (and not so young) Americans would disagree with you. :mrgreen: Look how massively international shows like Doctor Who, Sherlock, and Downton Abbey are, sometimes it's like the show has more American fans than it does English!
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Old 12-01-2013, 09:01
theonlyweeman
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I watch more American TV than British TV, but that's only because I like sitcoms and British sitcoms tend not to be funny (in my opinion, I know lots of others would argue the other way round), or not to hold my attention.

I wouldn't however say that British TV was dull, sure we have our fair share of crap (Tipping Point), but we do have a lot of good stuff and even our bad stuff looks good compared to some stuff on US TV...
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Old 12-01-2013, 16:49
Squiggle
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I disagree, I moved from Atlanta to England and I find the TV over here way better.

I went back to USA to see family in December and Sky+d some shows to watch when I got back to UK. Recently I watched The Poison Tree, Loving Miss Hatto, Restless and they were so much better than what I had watched over in USA last month.

Whilst I like shows like Dexter, The Mentalist, kind of liking Perception as well, Uk shows are better to me. They aren't as tedious and All-American (or British in this case) Family Friendly as USA shows are. Like y'all can handle interracial relationships, y'all don't need to hire certain ethnicity in shows just for their stereotypes, I watch shows over here where the minority cast members are just normal heroes or villains, like there isn't a novelty act attached to them. Also I love how free and uncensored y'all are compared to USA. Things aren't that big a deal to you and you go right for the taboo/controversial stuff. I love it.

Y'all have me intrigued and clutching my pearls all at the same time.
Y'all is crazy.
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Old 13-01-2013, 11:18
jules1000
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Hasn't this topic been done to death? Comparing premium, niche, big budget cable shows made in Hollywood, with writers and actors sourced from across the world, and the massive US network output, who's broadcasters can afford to, and do, pull and replace any failing shows after just a few episodes, with something that works better without any hassle, to the mostly publicly funded output of a small country in Europe that doesn't even have the population let alone the initial resources, to make a US-like premium cable system work, and regularly, through lower budgets to pay them through, looses top talent pretty quickly after unearthing it, to the big budget US shows of which you speak, is ridiculous. The UK (or at least the BBC and Channel 4, ITV seem happy to just pump out ratings bankers and tired but tested procedurals, though they do seem to be slowly coming round) produces far more quality television than most more comparable countries do (i.e. those with remotely similar population numbers, in the same continent, with at least slightly similar size economies), or in fact any country outside North America.

Only Brits (and republican US politicians when they're in opposition) moan endlessly about "only" being No. 2 at something, as if being No. 2 to anyone (even a country about the size of the continent we're in, with six times the population and countless times the resources) makes us a third world dictatorship .
Quote...Hasnt this topic been done to death?? Well I have been on these boards for some time and havent seen a thread where I could express my views. If you have you shoudnt have bothered answering..... Having said that thankyou for your reply and input...sticky out tongue emoction. On phone..
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Old 13-01-2013, 15:25
Digital Sid
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Quote...Hasnt this topic been done to death?? Well I have been on these boards for some time and havent seen a thread where I could express my views. If you have you shoudnt have bothered answering..... Having said that thankyou for your reply and input...sticky out tongue emoction. On phone..
Hahah
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Old 13-01-2013, 17:34
Yes
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There is a an abysmal lack of quality TV in the UK.

There are a lot of terrible shows in America but there's a lot of great ones too.

The only British stuff I watch really is sport. You get the odd gem like Sherlock and Luther but that's more luck than anything else.
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Old 13-01-2013, 17:39
Yes
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Hasn't this topic been done to death? Comparing premium, niche, big budget cable shows made in Hollywood, with writers and actors sourced from across the world, and the massive US network output, who's broadcasters can afford to, and do, pull and replace any failing shows after just a few episodes, with something that works better without any hassle, to the mostly publicly funded output of a small country in Europe that doesn't even have the population let alone the initial resources, to make a US-like premium cable system work, and regularly, through lower budgets to pay them through, looses top talent pretty quickly after unearthing it, to the big budget US shows of which you speak, is ridiculous. The UK (or at least the BBC and Channel 4, ITV seem happy to just pump out ratings bankers and tired but tested procedurals, though they do seem to be slowly coming round) produces far more quality television than most more comparable countries do (i.e. those with remotely similar population numbers, in the same continent, with at least slightly similar size economies), or in fact any country outside North America.

Only Brits (and republican US politicians when they're in opposition) moan endlessly about "only" being No. 2 at something, as if being No. 2 to anyone (even a country about the size of the continent we're in, with six times the population and countless times the resources) makes us a third world dictatorship .
Watch much TV outwith the UK and USA do you?

If the TV in foreign countries is anything like the films, then I'm sure they are considerably superior to the typical product on offer in the UK.

I can't really think of many great British films at all in the past few years, whereas I've seen dozens of great Argentine, Asian, German, French, scandanavian etc films.
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Old 13-01-2013, 19:05
daniel9624
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Gotta wonder does it matter? With the access we have now to TV from all over the world, should we just sit back and enjoy what we are getting ,while it lasts. And while we are here, two Canadian exports are very good atm, Continuum and Primeval.
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Old 13-01-2013, 19:21
Verence
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Gotta wonder does it matter? With the access we have now to TV from all over the world, should we just sit back and enjoy what we are getting ,while it lasts. And while we are here, two Canadian exports are very good atm, Continuum and Primeval.
Murdoch Mysteries is another good Canadian import
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Old 13-01-2013, 20:26
JaneBond
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One thing the US doesn't do well, or maybe do at all, is the comedian panel quiz show - like Have I Got News, Mock The Week, etc etc etc. Here in the UK we seem to have about 730 comedians who make the rounds on all these shows and you'da thought the US would be similarly blessed with such a load of jokers that they could fill a whole bunch of such shows, but iiuc no, nope, nada. Yes they do do shows like the Whitney/Chelsea chat show and that Roast The World show but the comedians get like 3mins and they're gone. Shame on you US, for shame.

Of course all their other shows, action, sit coms, dramas are freaky awesome.
The closest we have to Mock the Week and HIGNFY are The Daily Show and The Stephen Colbert Report. To a much lesser extent the late night talk shows may have segments on current news. Saturday Night Live is hit or miss. But still nothing that really approaches a regular panel going through the news.

Years ago, Bill Maher had a late night show called "Politically Incorrect" that probably came closest. It definitely had its moments.
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Old 13-01-2013, 20:40
jaimesw
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I dont really watch UK TV, If I do watch my TV it's normally the History channel and things like Storage Wars American Restoration........Basically crap TV
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Old 13-01-2013, 22:09
WLB
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If you compare American Network tv (NBC, ABC, Fox, CBS, CW) with British terrestrial channels (BBC 1 & 2, ITV 1, C4), IMHO there really isn't that much difference in quality in drama, i would even say in many cases ours can be of better quality (if always surprises me how many people consider an expensive american programme better just because it looks more expensive).

The major difference is that in the US everything is about the 18 to 49 demo, which alot of people on this site will be in, so the american dramas will be more to their taste. Where british dramas (itv) need the ABC1 demo to succeed, or a large total audience (BBC1), which is always easier to appeal to by going for thte older audience.

In comedy they have alot more than us, and do it very well. However, when we do it well we do it just as well as america, we just dont do it as consistently well as them. Look at BBT, which i love, its just Friends with a twist (They are geeks) Modern Family is just The Cosby show with a bit of a twist for The Office generation.

Cable shows is where the Americans are superior to us, but even looing at there crime dramas, a lot of what you are seeing there can be seen in the best of 1980s british crime dramas. Lets be honest its unfair to compare american cable channels, who can be successful with a niche audience, to channels in the UK that have to appeal a mass audience.
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Old 13-01-2013, 22:16
Midnight Moggy
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Anyone else find this? Having watched many seasons of Dexter Sopranos Breaking Bad. I struggle with mainstream british tv. It just seems so braindead dull. So dumbed down it is almost impossible to watch. Well actually impossible.
I think the opposite. I much prefer British TV and hardly watch any American programmes. Just The Big Bang Theory, The Vampire Diaries, and Pushing Daisies (which has finished of course). I have tried watching some other USA dramas, but they just don't interest me enough to keep watching. And apart from TBBT theory I do not find any of the America sitcoms funny. I think it may also be partly that I prefer to watch things which are set in the UK, with British accents.
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Old 13-01-2013, 22:22
StargateNerd_24
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The thing is we in uk get the best of US stuff and will not be exposed to the crap. And I am sure there is lots of rubbish on US tv. I think we do comedy over here better although not that the US cannot produce funny stuff and they do satire better (10 o'clock live v the Daily show). They out do us in terms of the amount of quality dramas they produce but we punch above our weight with the likes of DW, Merlin, Sherlock, Luther, DA, Spooks and Maddogs.

And lets not forget how many US shows use British actors and actresses.
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