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Emmys 2017
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TO: Executive Producers ... FROM: The EW TV Staff

RE: TV Cliches

Posted on

Don’t get us wrong: We love TV. But we watch a lot of it (hey, it’s our job) and we’re getting sick of seeing certain things over and over again. That’s why we jotted down this list of cliches we’d like to have banned forever:

Bare butts as signes of artistic integrity

Rick Schroder on NYPD Blue? Sure. Billy Campbell on Once and Again? Okay. But this trend needs to be stopped before Dick Van Dyke drops trou on Diagnosis Murder.

Reenactments of scenes from ’80s teen movies in Kevin Williamson-produced dramas

First, Dawson’s Creek redid The Breakfast Club and Risky Business. Then Wasteland offered a shot-for-shot homage to Dirty Dancing. What’s next — Pacey in Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo?

Generic sitcom titles (and this goes double for you, ABC)

Work With Me. Then Came You. Ladies Man. Odd Man Out. Two Guys and a Girl. Grown Ups. Friends. Oh, wait…

Supermodel guest stars

Heidi Klum on Spin City. Rebecca Romijn-Stamos on Just Shoot Me. Anybody on Veronica’s Closet. If we felt like watching a pretty, high-cheekboned gal hamming it up, we’d tune in to Ally McBeal.

Pro-wrestler guest stars

”Stone Cold” Steve Austin on Nash Bridges. Hulk Hogan on Suddenly Susan. The UPN prime-time lineup. If we wanted to watch bulky men butcher line readings, we’d tune in to Walker, Texas Ranger.

Characters talking to the camera

Whenever we witness this lazy, self-indulgent gimmick, we feel like screaming the title of one of the most egregious new offenders: Get Real!

Sitcoms about 30-ish Peter Pan-complex-stricken males We can’t tell you how happy we were when NBC canceled The Mike O’Malley Show. Then we remembered ABC’s Oh Grow Up was still on the air. Did we learn nothing from Men Behaving Badly, people?

Anyone on ‘The Practice’

… yelling ”Because you’re a lawyer and it’s your job to defend him, that’s why!”

Anyone on ‘ER’

… pounding on a dead person’s chest, looking desperately at a flatlining monitor, and yelling ”Come on! Come on!”

Anyone on any sitcom

… grimacing and saying ”Too much information.”

Anyone on any teen show

… knowingly saying ”Sorry, this is real life — it’s not like [insert name of almost identical teen show here].”

Anyone on ‘Law & Order’

… saying ”Look, Detective… Briscoe, is it?…I’ve told you everything I know. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to work.”

Now, if you’ll excuse us, we have to get back to … er, watching TV.