Notes on an Unintentional Cultural Hiatus

It is natural for people who write about television to write less during the summer: the number of shows on the air dwindles, meaning that the overall sense of activity within the industry is less conducive to the kinds of near-daily analysis that I might otherwise be engaged with.

Or, rather, this is what I tell myself as I return to the blog after an unintended two-week hiatus. In truth, a number of things have happened since that point which I could have written about, and the very point of the Cultural Catchup Project was to help fill in the gaps during these warmer months. However, a combination of a trip home to Canada and the recent holiday weekend have created enough distractions that writing about television just hasn’t seemed like a priority…or, rather, it hasn’t seemed like a priority here.

When I started writing for The A.V. Club, I knew that it would mean writing slightly less here: because I was writing about The Office on a weekly basis, and because those reviews were time-sensitive, it did mean that I wrote about shows like Community and Parks and Recreation less often than I might have otherwise. This time around, meanwhile, it’s resulted in a situation where I’ve felt fairly busy in terms of writing even when the blog sits largely dormant.

On top of a few drop-ins (including a review of the premiere of ABC’s Expedition Impossible and ABC/Global’s Rookie Blue), I’m covering two ongoing series for The A.V. Club.

The first was something entirely new, which has actually been a major reason for a lack of blogging: while BBC America’s U.K. import The Inbetweeners only had twelve total episodes in its first two series, catching up on them felt somewhat necessary given that I’m covering the third series for the site. I’ll admit that I’ve found Series Three a bit uneven, and parts of the show remain a bit broader than I would like, but the first two series have a real charm to them which has made it an enjoyable experience. Mind you, it is somewhat odd to be covering a series (or season) that the majority of commenters have seen in its entirety through YouTube and illegal downloads (since it aired in the U.K. last fall), but that’s sort of given it a TV Club Classic vibe that I’m not entirely opposed to.

The Inbetweeners | TV Club | The A.V. Club

The second, meanwhile, picks up on something I wrote last fall. I’m among those who felt the sixth season of Weeds marked a creative turnaround for the beleaguered Showtime series, and said as much in my review of the finale. While the jury remains out on the seventh season, the show has returned to The A.V. Club lineup after a year-long absence, and I’m quite pleased with the response from readers. There are very few sites covering the show week-to-week, and while the show may be inconsistent I don’t think it has stopped being interesting since the reboot back in Season Four. I’ll be tracking the season’s ups and downs, however they might fall, in the weeks ahead.

Weeds | TV Club | The A.V. Club

Of course, things are not going to stay quiet at Cultural Learnings forever: the Cultural Catchup Project will return early next week, Breaking Bad reviews will return on the 17th, I will at least offer some preliminary thoughts on Torchwood: Miracle Day (and may review it consistently if there is both demand and personal interest), and the Emmy nominations are now only eight days away. However, if there’s anything that’s happened in the last two weeks that you want me to comment briefly on, feel free to leave a comment/question below and we’ll see if we can’t get a conversation started.



Filed under Cultural Learnings, The Inbetweeners, Weeds

6 responses to “Notes on an Unintentional Cultural Hiatus

  1. What do you think of Misfits?
    It’s a British show that has recently been made available on Hulu.

    • I was in Canada when it debuted (and thus unable to get on Hulu), and haven’t gotten to it after my return.

      I do intend to watch it sooner rather than later, however.

  2. James

    I’d be interested in a Men of a Certain Age review with the season and perhaps the series now over. After your mid-season pre-review said “…it’s my intent to review the series weekly in post-air form when I can go into a bit more detail”, I was kind of disappointed they didn’t happen.

    • Yes – I am aware of my false promise, which just sort of backfired on me – I had seen the first three episodes when I wrote that review, and then I ended up on vacation during the fourth and fifth (with the latter coming while I was in transit, and I haven’t watched it at all).

      I hope to be able to offer such a post tomorrow.

      • James

        As long as it wasn’t because of a lack of interest! If you find the time to write about it, I’d be happy to read your thoughts on how things turned out.

  3. Tausif Khan

    Could you provide links to your individual episode reviews for the AV Club here at Cultural Learnings?

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