Five Ways A TV Title Can Fail

By CB Staff 2012-11-15 13:58:40 discussion comments
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Plot-binding Titles
Having a vague title no one understands is a bad idea, but sometimes getting too specific isn’t any better.  A show never wants to limit its options down the road.  Take West Wing, for example.  Had Aaron Sorkin decided to call it The Bartlet Presidency, his run for re-election would have been laughable, and there wouldn’t have even been any point in finding him a successor.  Luckily, by overtly making the show about more than him, the writers weren’t caught in a stranglehold during the later seasons.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for How I Met Your Mother.  I get where they were going with this, but eight years in, it’s pretty clear the show is actually better during episodes in which they’re not trying to find Ted’s wife.  With all apologies to Bob Saget, if the show had a more generic title, it wouldn’t be encumbered by its format.  It would just be free to make the best episodes possible.

The same general problem applies to Don’t Trust The B---- In Apartment 23 too. Chloe has to remain a bitch for the entirety of the show’s run, and if she ever decides to move, she’ll either have to choose apartment 23 in a different building or a different bitch will need to move in with June, creating a confusing rotating bitches plot line. 

Here’s to hoping Julia Louis-Dreyfus isn’t planning to make more than eight seasons of her hilarious comedy Veep.
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