FEATURE: Jenna’s Underrated and Overrated Television Shows

By Jenna Johnson

I spend too much of my time watching Neflix. However, without further ado: the 4 television fandoms that you should join.

Please keep in mind that this is one person’s opinion of shows that should have a higher following, and those that need to just quit while they’re ahead.

(Editor’s Note: This is a great piece to get some good and civil conversation going. Feel free to leave comments!)

Underrated

The Almighty Johnsons
Although the show was filmed in, and shown in, New Zealand, Netflix UK did pick up Seasons 1 and 2 for online The_Almighty_Johnsons_season_2streaming, and I do not regret the possible jail time that downloading Hola Better Internet may bring me as it led me to this gem.

The Almighty Johnsons is about 4 brothers – Mike, Anders, Ty, and Axl – who just happen to be the living, human embodiment of Norse Gods. Now, I didn’t think I’d be as invested in this show as I became, but as a fan of the Percy Jackson, the Heroes of Olympus, and Kane Chronicles novels from Rick Riordan, I knew that I needed to give this Norse God series a chance. And I’m glad I did.

The story revolves around the youngest brother, Axl, and how – on his 21st birthday – he becomes the host and incarnation of Odin, the All Father, and how he must find his Frigg in order for the other Earthbound Gods and Goddesses – yes, Goddesses do make an appearance – to assume their full power.

Starring Emmett Skilton as Axl, and the Hobbit’s Fili – aka Dean O’Gorman – as Anders. The Almighty Johnsons is a very humorous show about family, history, and following your heart. (It also doesn’t hurt that the writers of the show really played up the fact that Dean O’Gorman left mid-series to film Peter Jackson’s newest trilogy by throwing in dwarf jokes throughout the rest of season 2 and season 3.)

House of Anubis
My very first thought after finishing the very first episode of this series was “Why didn’t Nickelodeon have showslike this when I was a teenager?” 

The show originated, filmed, and is mostly watched in England. However, thanks to Netflix UK (via Hola Better Internet), I have been able to go in and be entranced by the mysteries this particu

hous of anubis

lar British boarding school has to offer the residents of Anubis House.

The show starts out with Nina Martin receiving a scholarship to attend a boarding school in England, and from her very first day living in Anubis House, Nina’s experiences are unlike that of any of the other students. She is quickly swept up in the mystery of the scary caretaker, the mystery revolving around the original owners of the home, and the mystery of why old lady Sarah chose Nina in the first place. 

Unfortunately, as Netflix UK only has Season 1 available to stream online, the only other way to watch is to download from iTunes, order from Amazon.com, or stream using Amazon Prime (which you can get a free 30-day trial that includes streaming.)

Starring Francis Mcghee and Eugene Simon from Game of Thrones, and Nathalia Ramos from Bratz: the Movie, this show is definitely one for those who enjoy a good mystery, but can overlook the sometimes overly-cheesy acting.

Marvel’s Agents of Shield
If you’ve not been watching this show, for shame! Dishonor on you. Dishonor on your cow!

AgentsofShieldAs spin-off of the Marvel movie franchise, Agents of Shield follows Phil Coulson and his cracker jack team of agents as they handle new – and strange – cases that will test the team in cooperation and ingenuity as they work to save the world from threatening  supernatural events.

And [SPOILER] apparently Agent Coulson isn’t dead like Director Fury had us believing, but his “death” did motivate the Avengers enough to push through and save the world from the alien invasion in The Avengers. (It makes me wonder how Tony Stark and Steve Rogers will react if he is in The Avengers 2 or 3).

If you’re looking for filler between the next movies in the Marvel universe, then Agents of Shield may be the show for you. Starring Clark Gregg and Ming-Na Wen, it really lessens the hurt that Avengers 2 probably won’t be in theaters until 2016.

It is written by Joss Whedon, and is based upon the Marvel Universe from the genius mind of Mr. Stan Lee. Agents of Shield airs Tuesday nights at 8pm on ABC.

Sherlock
There are many adaptations and interpretations of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous mysteries floating about. however, there is one adaptation that needs to be appreciated by the masses. BBC’s Sherlock began airing on BBC One in 2010, and has gained a steady, and quick following in its three short seasons. (I’m not exaggerating Sherlockon the short. Each season is only three episodes.)

Starring Benedict Cumberbatch (War Horse) as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, The Hobbit) as John Watson, we see Doyle’s classics with a fresh, modern twist (I’m pretty certain that Irene Adler isn’t naked when Sherlock first meets her in the books).

Being “Britain’s Most Watched Drama” series since 2010, Sherlock depicts the consulting detective as he assists the Metropolitan Police Service in solving various crimes alongside his flatmate Watson. Although the series is more than just Sherlock solving a variety of crimes, Holmes’ main conflict is with that of his arch enemy Jim Moriarty.

Season 3 has just finished airing in the United States on PBS, and it has been the most watched drama in recent years thanks to the long pent-up frustration left by the Season 2 finale with “The Reichenbach Fall.”

Sherlock is written by Stephen Thompson, Mark Gatiss, and Doctor Who forerunner, Steven Moffat.

No news yet on Season 4; however, the new Star Wars movie will probably be out before then. 

(Editor’s Note: Benedict Cumberbatch, who portrays Sherlock Holmes, is rumored to have been casted in a mystery role in the new Star Wars movie. Geek crossover alert!)

Overrated

Supernatural
SupernaturalWhen this show started in 2005, I only had to watch the first episode and I was hooked. It was thrilling, it was thought provoking, and it starred some really cute guys.

But Season 2 lost me because most of the shows became repetitive and pretty predictable. “Oh a demon killed another of Sam’s girlfriends?” Been there. Done that. Got the t-shirt. 

With Supernatural reaching its 9th season, how many questions will be on the table for Season 10 as plots have been stretched almost to breaking point.

Will the Winchester brothers, and Cas the angel (is he still an angel?), rid the world of evil for good? Or will the evil get the best of them?

Perhaps making a movie to tie up all the loose ends might be a better alternative to a new full season.

True Blood
Although this blog post is a little late to the game as HBO has announced that Season 7 – which airs in June 2014 – will be the final season of True Blood, I can only say “it’s about time.”

In 2008 True Blood was the most anticipated television show in years as it was supposed to follow the widely-True-bloodfollowed Sookie Stackhouse book series of Charlaine Harris. However, it kind of didn’t. While the character and locations stayed the same, the flow of the plot overshot that of the book series by a mile. 

Now don’t get me wrong, and please don’t throw the rotten tomatoes at me, but I honestly didn’t watch past the first episode. Sookie was not who I imagined, Bill tried a little too hard to make his Southern accent convincing, and somehow they fit an entire book into ONE SEASON. If you are like me and read the series before it started, you’d know that there were 7 books out before HBO began airing the show, therefore if episode one was book one, then there would only be 7 episodes of the show, right? 

Apparently the writers were granted all rights towards creative licensing because quick summaries of episodes on the True Blood Wiki show that they’re not following the progression of the novels, and some of the plots came WAY out of left field.

It may be just me, but if I put so much time and effort into writing a popular book series like the Sookie Stackhouse, I’d have at least had all final say in the scripts making sure they stayed on topic.

The Walking Dead
Seriously, put the tomatoes down!!

I know, I know! I’m such a bad geek. 

The-Walking-Dead-04-castHowever, I’m a geek who knows that this show is – very quickly – growing really boring. It’s very predictable: Carl gets everyone into a scrape with Walkers and someone dies, Daryl is a badass, and Rick really needs to get a grip on things. 

But truthfully, there’s only so much you can do with post-apocalyptic plots, especially with those plots of the undead. If you survive, you somehow become infected, you die, you come back in an “undead” state. Zombies. Vampires. It’s all starting to run together.

 

One point of contention between the diehard Walking Dead fans, and those who only watch the show, is the appearance of Darryl and whether or not he will be eaten by zombies. This reviewer’s guess: it’ll happen eventually.

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