Dawn Ostroff, New York City, May 2009
In looking at current hits like GOSSIP GIRL and 90210, not to mention upcoming trashfests MELROSE PLACE and THE BEAUTIFUL LIFE, this TV Addict can’t seem to shake the feeling that you’ve completely lost touch with your network’s roots. That thought became all the more apparent after spending this past weekend enjoying the emotional roller-coaster that was EVERWOOD’s second season.
Seriously, what’s happened to the once proud CW… once home to GILMORE GIRLS, FELICITY and even 7TH HEAVEN, each of which, in their own ways, defined outstanding television. These shows entertained, enlightened and surprised us with their ability to illicit laughter, summon up tears and even, on occasion, teach us a thing or two about ourselves and the world in which we live. Say what you will about the off-charts-preachiness of Reverend Camden and his 7TH HEAVEN flock, but creator Brenda Hampton raised more social issues than anyone since the folks behind the ABC Afterschool Special’s we all grew up on. Conversely, the only thing the current crop of CW shows seem interested in raising are their character’s hemlines and/or levels of alcohol and drug consumption.
Don’t get me wrong; It’s not as if I have anything against mindless entertainment per se. (I am, after-all a TV Addict!) However, I can’t help but wonder why the CW has exiled every positive role model — including Rory Gilmore, Felicity Porter and Ephram Brown — in favor of badly-behaving bitches like Blair Waldorf and Naomi Clark or horny hounddogs like Chuck Bass. If the trash-talking backstabbers on AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL are the closest thing you’ve got to aspirational characters, your network is in trouble.
The TV Addict