The television world can be a pretty chaotic place at times. Especially during the year 2020. With numerous new channels appearing on the scene and a host of others disappearing, it can be hard to keep up with all the happenings and new shows. Moreover, not all shows are created equal – some are undoubtedly better than others.
The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly Of Current Television
Thanks to the wonder that is YouTube, we’ve been given a peak inside the television industry’s darkest recesses during this unprecedented time. Through these videos, we’ve been able to witness some of 2020’s best and worst TV shows. While some of these are definitely good, it’s important to keep in mind that none of them are perfect.
First off, let’s discuss the shows that are actually quite good. Interestingly enough, most of these shows seem to have sprung up from the darkness that was YouTube during this pandemic. We’ve seen countless YouTubers flock to the platform and bring their talents to bear as content creators, expanding the content available to a worldwide audience.
Take iHeartRadio’s Alone Yet Not Alone. The daily, comedic vlog of Megan Jayne Crabbe has more than 4.5 million subscribers. However, it was in fact her husband David Crabbe behind the camera who directed, edited, and produced the majority of the videos. While Megan’s comedic talent certainly shines through, David’s cinematography and editing leave a lot to be desired. Nevertheless, the couple’s creative energy is infectious and they’ve managed to keep their brand fresh during the pandemic.
Now, let’s move on to the shows that aren’t exactly good, but are worth mentioning for being bad. It’s important to keep in mind that a show can be extremely bad and still possess some value. For example, it’s always interesting to watch troubled celebrity couples go through messy breakups. Especially when they’re forced to do so in a highly edited and choreographed fashion. Just think of how many times you’ve seen a spoiled celebrity throw a tantrum on social media, only for their fans to come to their rescue.
Take Dog The Bounty Hunter for example. The reality star owns a pet-catching company and has previously starred in a number of reality TV shows. However, it was his 2019 spin-off that became infamous for its disturbing content. Although the concept of the show is pretty standard – bounty hunters track down criminals – episodes tend to focus more on the gruesome ways that Dog hunts his victims. The show’s main character is Michael Vick — Dog’s twin brother — who is a convicted dog-fostering criminal. While he was released from prison in 2019, Dog The Bounty Hunter continues to be a controversial show.
As much as we’d like to believe that YouTube has raised the bar when it comes to online video, it really hasn’t. This is especially clear when looking at the online catalogs of the big TV networks. The shows that were originally uploaded to YouTube during the pandemic continue to be the most popular shows on the Big 4 networks’ websites as of April 2021.
Take the first season of the TLC drama series Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. The series follows the chaotic lives of Momma Boo Boo and her family. The highlight of the show is undoubtedly the star’s voluminous hair. However, what’s important to note is how the show and its creators continue to shamelessly reference 1980s television. From the bright colors to the giant hair, this isn’t a show that would have been inconceivable to viewers in 1985.
This is something that many of the shows on this list have in common. Shows that were released in the wake of the pandemic tend to shamelessly rip off other shows and steal the styles and catchphrases of the famous characters. The worst example of this would be The Game. The show is essentially Grand Theft Auto, but with parenthood behind bars.
We’re quickly heading into uncharted television territory with what’s happening in NASCAR right now. As of mid-April, more than 10 million people were watching the racing league on YouTube every month. Moreover, the popularity of NASCAR on social media has propelled the brand into the mainstream, as more than 100 million people follow the sport on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Although we haven’t seen the likes of a televised NASCAR race since before the pandemic, the racing world has changed forever. In 2020, the top three drivers in the standings are all social media personalities and their races have all been livestreamed. The industry is certainly taking its sweet time getting back to normal, but it’s gradually finding its way there.