Murder, She Wrote
I think an excellent final episode of “Murder, She Wrote” would have been if there had been yet another murder in Cabot Cove, and Jessica and her friends started investigating it, and then, around the thirty-five minute mark, just as all the evidence was beginning to point toward one of the guest
stars — Joan Van Ark, let’s say — one of Jessica’s friends were to spot her planting a bit of evidence implicating Joan Van Ark. And then everyone would suddenly realize: The reason that murders seem to follow Jessica wherever she goes is, she’s been committing them. She is not, as is widely supposed, a mystery writer moonlighting as a crime-solving sleuth. She is, in fact, a serial killer masquerading as a mystery writer moonlighting as a crime-solving sleuth, and her M.O. involves framing innocent people for her crimes. They begin looking into what happened to the many, many people that Jessica sent to prison, and discover that most of them have been executed or died behind bars. The final five minutes of the show would consist of all of her friends sitting there, mute with shock and disgust and horror.
Sure, Cheers is entertaining enough in its own right, but if you pretend that Sam and Diane are secretly brother and sister, it sends the sexual tension right through the roof.
The only plausible explanation for why the TV program
“M*A*S*H” lasted eleven years, while the Korean War lasted a mere three years, is that the war actually ended around the same time Colonel Blake left the 4077, and died in (what now seems to be) a highly suspicious helicopter accident. In hindsight, it seems obvious that Colonel Potter was some sort of a deranged madman — possibly a military officer gone insane from combat — who, unable to face the prospect of returning home (or perhaps, merely desperate to nail Loretta Swit) commandeered an army hospital and carefully withheld news of the truce, sneaking out under dead of night with handfuls of grenades to manufacture new casualties who’d need mending. The show was not, it turns out, about a team of valiant doctors struggling to maintain their sense of humor and human dignity in the face of the absurdity of war; it was a terrifying tale of a group held unwittingly hostage to one man’s desperate delusions, playing roles in a sick masquerade.
The Dukes of Hazzard
While “The Dukes of Hazzard” was entertaining enough, there seems to be another, even more fascinating show, lurking in the background, namely: What, precisely, is going on at the roads department of Hazzard County? Given that there’s always at least one bridge out in Hazzard County, they must be off solving crimes or something. I like to imagine a show about them; every week, they set out to fix the bridge over the holler, and then they come across Bigfoot or the Lindbergh baby or something and get all distracted.
I like to believe that the cast of Veronica’s Closet still gathers once a week to “tape” a “show”, because nobody has the heart to tell Kirstie Alley that the network pulled the plug three years ago.
I think it’s always an excellent joke when local newscasters playfully tease their weatherman about how lousy the weather is — like, “Oh, Stu, don’t tell us there’s going to be more rain!” or “Stu’s not going to give us any relief from this heat wave, are you, Stu?” or whatever — because, you know, what’s Stu going to do about it? But I’ll bet that every once in a while, a lifetime of catching flack about the weather — which, if you’re a trained meteorologist, you know better than anyone is beyond human control — must finally begin to wear at a man’s soul, and I’m guessing in the vault of some local TV station, somewhere, there’s footage of a weatherman finally snapping and screaming, “You know, I didn’t give you shit about the toddler who got set on fire that led the newscast.”
Let us now consider how much more cost-effective it would have been for Wilton Knight to have simply given David Hasselhoff a very clever chauffeur, played by William Daniels.