Story by Jennifer Gardner
Fall is finally here, bipolar Iowa weather aside. School is in full swing, leaves are starting to turn and new seasons of TV shows are starting.
While it can be hard to fit in time to watch TV around homework, meetings and work, Drake students make the time especially when watching shows they’re particularly passionate about.
Networks premiere many new shows in the fall, hoping to create the next “Friends” or “Law and Order.”
More than half of new shows don’t make the cut, however, and the hundreds of thousands of dollars spent by the production companies on advertising, giveaways and social media campaigns to attract viewers go to waste.
Sophomore Anna Hess is most excited for the premiere of “The Walking Dead,” which returns for its fourth season on Oct. 13.
“My boyfriend, Andrew, and I started watching it one night, and we got hooked,” Hess said. “It’s cool because it’s such a realistic and lifelike twist to a fictional story.”
Sophomore Sara Morgensen, on the other hand, is obsessed with the hit comedy “New Girl,” which returned to TV Sept. 17.
“The quick wit of the characters is the best part,” Morgensen said. “Each character is different and it all blends well. I’ve watched ‘New Girl’ from the first season because I’m a huge Zooey Deschanel fan, and it’s a great show.”
In order to capture the fickle attention of viewers, companies are required to be more and more creative with advertising as a result of the glut of new shows on the market.
ABC has a $100,000 giveaway to promote “Lucky 7,” its new show about winning the lottery, and Fox reenacted their pilot episode for their new drama “Sleepy Hollow” in an old cemetery in L.A. for fans. Although TV ads are effective, companies are finding new avenues to set their shows apart.
Some shows even shun typical production stations and instead rely on streaming services like Netflix.
Senior T.J. Mitchell found the show “House of Cards” completely by accident and has been addicted to it ever since.
“I heard about ‘House of Cards’ just browsing through Netflix one afternoon,” Mitchell said. “I watched every single episode of the first season in two days. I love seeing new aspects of characters changing in every episode. Both ‘House of Cards’ and my other favorite show ‘Breaking Bad’ are about character development, which is interesting.”
For Hess, the emotional bond with the characters in “The Walking Dead” is what keeps her returning to the show.
“You learn to love all the characters and want to see what happens next for them,” Hess said. “You get caught up in their lives, and it helps me relax and take my mind off things. TV is great because it’s a distraction from everything else going around me.”