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The closet which may or may not contain a monster

3 December 2012

I generally don’t watch TV shows until they’ve already been cancelled. The reason for that is simple, at least in my head: I like watching things on my own schedule. If I don’t want to wait a week — or worse, several months — to find out what happens next on a show, modern technology makes it so that I don’t have to. I broke that convention recently… sort of. I noticed that American Horror Story Season One had popped up on Netflix.

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While I don’t watch shows when they air, I don’t live in a cave — I’d read that each season of American Horror Story was meant to be self-contained (more on that in a bit), so I knew I could watch a season without being on the hook as to what would happen in the next season.

I thought the show started out pretty great, had a few filler episodes in the middle, a few strong episodes near the end, then ended on an episode that felt more like filler than anything else. If they’d ended the season at episode 11, it would have made sense to me; episode 12 seemed unnecessary.

But you know what I really dug? I dug that someone was making a horror series in the first place. Problems aside, I liked that they basically made a season-long horror film. I like the concepts of self-contained seasons, and I hear the new one is pretty decent. Most of all, though, I like that they got out there and did it.

It can’t have been easy to sell this show to the network, but to me, it was a creative way to do TV, something I haven’t seen done before. And I applaud that.

So what about you, folks? Seen any innovations in TV or storytelling lately? What’s your favorite current episodic show?

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