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Topic: Is there really such a thing as jumping the shark? Post Reply | Post New Topic
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Kevin Brown
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Joined: 31 May 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 7363
Posted: 22 November 2017 at 9:31pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I always kind of chuckle whenever I see someone commenting about a show "jumping the shark" as if it's a bad thing.   People don't seem to know that there were a lot more episodes of Happy Days after the "shark" episode than before it.  And after the episode the ratings were just as strong, if not stronger, as they were with the pre-shark episode.  This is not to say that the show was actually as good as earlier episodes, but the ratings were what mattered the most to the network.
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Steven Brake
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Joined: 01 January 2016
Posts: 46
Posted: 23 November 2017 at 9:52am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Fonzie was to Happy Days what Wolverine was to the X-Men; a mysterious character who becomes so popular he overshadows everyone else around him, and becomes so over-powerful he loses the mystique that made him so interesting in the first place.

Does that make Richie Cyclops?
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Eric Sofer
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Joined: 31 January 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 1648
Posted: 23 November 2017 at 11:38am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

At least Ralph Malph wasn't Jean... eww.
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Brian O'Neill
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Joined: 13 November 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1676
Posted: 23 November 2017 at 1:13pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Ralph could be Banshee.
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Jeremy Simington
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Joined: 10 April 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 683
Posted: 24 November 2017 at 5:36pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

STEVEN BRAKE: Fonzie was to Happy Days what Wolverine was to the X-Men

Same thing happened with Steve Urkel on Family Matters. This thought was made as I read Steven's comment, which then led to the LOL moment of Urkel as Wolverine. Stupid brain.
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Doug Centers
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Joined: 17 February 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 2683
Posted: 24 November 2017 at 6:30pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

This could probably be a whole thread of its own;
Supporting characters that hijacked tv shows.

I got Dr. Smith from LOST IN SPACE.
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Warren Scott
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Joined: 09 July 2016
Posts: 169
Posted: 24 November 2017 at 8:56pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I agree with Ed that the first couple of seasons of "Happy Days" hold up much better (There was a lot of location shooting and a "warts and all" look at the teen years so it almost came across like a movie.) though I was among kids who tuned in every week to see The Fonz in the later seasons.
Rob O., I thought I was the only one who found the later seasons of "Seinfield" very formulaic and often stretching credibility.
I think the cases of "jumping the shark" cited by many people fall into two categories:
1. Episodes planned for ratings sweeps weeks
"The Six Million Dollar Man"'s more outrageous opponents, particularly Bigfoot, certainly would make great attention-getters for commercials. And the actual "shark-jumping" episode of "Happy Days" was a season-opener.
2. Major cast changes usually made to accommodate actors leaving or growing up
The youngest siblings on "The Cosby Show," "Family Ties" and "Growing Pains" aren't all that young, so new ones were added. Or, as mentioned, Ron Howard left "Happy Days," so others were brought in to assume his role as foil to The Fonz. While the show's creators are doing their best to preserve the show's format, it's starting to show its age.
What do you think? Are there any other categories?
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Brian O'Neill
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Joined: 13 November 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1676
Posted: 24 November 2017 at 9:40pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

The original site had 'They Did It' as a category, for all those 'letdowns' when two characters with romantic tension, and a 'will they or won't they?' relationship, finally took it to the next level, and the shows 'fizzled'.
 The category pretty much existed due to 'Maddie and 'Dave' on 'Moonlighting', who were cited more than any other couple, with the possible exception of 'Lois and Clark'.
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