When is it time to break up with a TV show?

When are we finally going to find out what the pink stars are all about on
When are we finally going to find out what the pink stars are all about on "Under The Dome"? Photo: CBS

SAN DIEGO, September 1, 2014 – Sitting down to watch “Under The Dome,” a sense of obligation rather than anticipation nagged me. I felt irritated. I watched anyway.

There’s an hour of my life I won’t get back.

The CBS TV series adapted from the Stephen King novel of the same name started off with higher than expected ratings and many positive critical reviews last summer. Producers were faced with the challenge of extending this limited series beyond its original shelf life to retain all those unexpected viewers. The original plot was drawn out to an unsatisfying cliffhanger.

With Season 2 grinding to a finish, viewers are still wondering when we’re going to find out what the pink stars and the tunnel mean. While CBS hasn’t confirmed whether the show will be renewed for Season 3, executives of the show said at Comic-Con International in San Diego they plan to continue the show three to five years.

Kill. Me. Now.

Only Kevin Bacon kept me coming back for "The Following." Photo: Fox
Only Kevin Bacon kept me coming back for “The Following.” Photo: Fox

Instead of just sticking it out a few more weeks, there is a bigger decision to make: whether it’s time to bail out already. Unlike Big Jim, Junior, Barbie, Julia and the rest, I’m not trapped by the dome.

My personal dome is my own sense of being a quitter. It’s hard to walk out of a movie theater once you’ve paid up. It’s hard to quit reading a book after a few chapters. Several times I haven’t finished a book club selection by the time our group meets. When someone else admits they didn’t like a book and didn’t finish either, it’s a relief. Sorry, Abraham Verghese.

I don’t universally consider watching TV a waste of time, if it’s fun, thrilling, or enlightening. Good thing since I write about it. I give a series a fair chance to land on my regular viewing schedule. If I’m still watching by the third episode, it’s a keeper. By then, I’m committed to see it through.

When a series hits a wall or gets nutty after I’m hooked, it commits a mortal TV sin. I’m in the position of hating myself if I bail out because it renders time truly wasted. Fool me once, fool me twice, and all.

When do you decide to give up on a TV show? What shows have you called quits on after being a big fan at the start?

I was a devoted fan of “The X Files” like the rest of the in-crowd at the time. I can’t recall why I finally stopped watching. A show that was once so exciting became disposable and silly. Same with “Twin Peaks.”

When Mulder left "The X Files," so did I. Photo: X-Files Wikia
When Mulder left “The X Files,” so did I. Photo: X-Files Wikia

I’m even more vague about dumping the original “CSI.” I never missed an episode in the early days. My attention shifted to “CSI: Miami” with its sunshine drenched cinematography. CBS saw fit to cancel the Miami edition out of nowhere while a cliffhanger lingered. CBS, I’m still irked about this. By then I had zero interest in going back to the original “CSI.”

It’s harder to dump a show that has a season-long mystery built into the plot. I had high hopes for the CBS series “Hostages” with Dylan McDermott and Toni Collette. Only a few episodes in, the plot holes emerged, made worse by truly stupid decisions by the characters and flat acting. I was recording “The Blacklist” for this? I watched “Hostages” on my DVR from Episode 4 on as fast as I could just to get it over with. Thank goodness it was cancelled.

“The Following” on Fox teetered dangerous close to losing me during Season 2, but I am willing to forgive Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy nearly anything. I’ll stick it out for a little bit in Season 3, but not long, especially if any new series grab my attention.

“Believe” seemed like something fresh in the first few episodes, but it started chasing its tail quickly, about the fourth or fifth episode. Kyle MacLachlan, I gave you a chance after “Twin Peaks” and you tricked me again. “Believe” was the guy I dated a few times whose texts I ignored after a while.

Which shows did you have to break up with? “Heroes,” “Lost,” maybe “Homeland”? Did you quit watching “Two and a Half Men” when Charlie Sheen left? Take our poll, and tell us in the Comments sections.

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Media Migraine and Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +

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