Don't get us wrong -- of course reality television is entertaining, and yes, the likes of Mary Murphy and The Hoff had some great lines this summer. Bet let's not forget those "writers" people who actually take the time to think about what characters say and do before they say and do them. You know, those guys and gals who are experts at crafting stories who sometimes cruelly take their love away from us abruptly and shorten our TV seasons if we don't treat them right? Yeah, them. We're about one America's Got Talent episode away from a nervous breakdown, and we can't wait to have them back.
2. We can forget about the horrors of Swingtown.
Not into swingin'? Screw you! That's Swingtown's motto -- literally. The show that could have satisfied a niche audience had it been able to steam up a cable network was epically out of place on CBS all summer, with awkward scenes of spouses being peer-pressured into watered down, broadcast network-approved orgies week after week. It was smarmy, creepy, and just plain gross, and not at all in the good ways.
3. No More Olympics.
The Olympics bring people a lot of joy. They bring the world closer together for a brief period in time, as we all rejoice and despair together in the wins and losses of our respective countries. They're also long as hell, and they relentlessly dominated the media this year, preempting important things like Conan and a little thing called "life as we know it." It'll be nice to get on with our lives now that the whole ordeal is over.
4. Nine whole months before we have to hear Mary Murphy scream again.
Yeah, we may worship at the altar of So You Think You Can Dance, but even die-hard addicts can barely tolerate Mary Murphy's ear-piercing vocal outputs. She's fun when she's putting people on the hot tamale train or teasing Nigel or wearing gawdy clothes that look like they came from QVC, but our year's supply of Excedrin Migraine is gone because of her and it will take us a while to restock.
5. Ali Lohan's leathery 14-year-old face will only appear in tabloids.
Living Lohan was such a vast disapointment. Not only did we not really get to watch Dina go off on the paparazzi (like we sincerely hoped to see), but we were force-fed the whiny Ali who really wants to be a singer/actress like her big sister Lindsay (who wisely never appeared on this trainwreck of a show) but didn't actually want to do any work to make it happen. The only thing she devoted time to was pancaking on the makeup, creating an aged image that even the sweet Anderson Cooper couldn't help but make fun of.
6. Won't have to hear Renny's screechy voice on Big Brother anymore.
While the Big Brother darlin' from New Orleans doesn't have the shrillness of Mary Murphy's high-pitched emanations, we were subjected to way more of Renny. When this fiery little teapot gets all steamed up during a challenge or a fight with Jerry, she'll really shout. Her desperate squawk is bad enough in regular conversation, but we're really annoyed at her fellow houseguests, who meanly gave her hosting duties on a number of PoV challenges, forcing her to project her atrocious voice even louder throughout the backyard.
7. Dogs and their owners can return to the park (or Animal Planet) where they belong.
Greatest American Dog was supposed to be a cute pageant-y show where we'd get to see everyday pets (instead of those prissy Westiminster Kennel Show pooches) compete for some love and affection. What we got was desperate pet owners looking ridiculous while trying to make their "best friends" do stupid tricks. Dumb owners. Dumb show.
8. No more off-key teenagers trying to win parts in musicals.
Instead of letting teens audition for their community theater productions of Godspell (like they should), this summer they were plucked from obscurity and given the chance to show off their vocal abilities and land a gig on the stage (Legally Blonde: The Search for the Next Elle Woods) or in the movies (High School Musical: Get in the Picture). Can't they go back to getting parts on Broadway the same way everyone else does? Go on American Idol, put out a flop record and then try and cash in on their remaining minutes of fame? Instead we had to see bad singing, worse dancing and painful renditions of songs from High School Musical that made Zac Efron sound like Michael Crawford.
9. We're that much closer to the midseason returns of Lost, Battlestar Galactica and 24.
The fall return of shows like House, Heroes and the Office are certainly exciting and long overdue, but the wait for the final installments of Battlestar, the resolution of where the hell that island went on Lost and Jack Bauer, who we miss enough to forgive the almost unforgivable last season, has been excruciating. The end of summer just means we're that much closer to the January premieres.
10. The Mole can be officially retired until Anderson Cooper decides he wants to come back.
Ahh, the revamped Mole. And by "revamped," ABC forgot to tell you they meant boring, terribly cast, and dumbed-down considerably. Bring back Anderson Cooper and the rest of the things that made the original Mole great and we'll get interested.
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