It’s March, which can only mean one thing in North America. No, not spring, not St. Patrick’s Day, not Girl Scout Cookie Season (which varies by geographical region). It’s March Madness.Perhaps you’ve noticed your colleagues furiously filling in brackets and dropping off cash at the office? Or, as one of the Scholars editors recently experience, your mother fervently discussed the state of Michigan’s team? Mom, none of us even went there.
Around these parts (and at Minnesota Public Radio) this sports fervor for NCAA Men’s Basketball means an opportunity for a fervent discussion of pop culture, and because we love voting and television, the editorial team surveyed available programming and bravely chose 64 shows.
We were careful to observe all genres and methods available to us, and in the interest of brevity and sanity, did not include classics no longer airing (sorry The Wire, The League, Parks & Recreation, and M*A*S*H.) Naturally, show premiering in the coming weeks were also ineligible, because there’s no way of any of us to know if Rush Hour or The Catch is more entertaining than The Walking Dead or Empire. We have included shows from Netflix’s pantheon, and are as sorry that Transparent and Man in the High Castle didn’t make the cut (we’re sorry The Good Wife and Madame Secretary aren’t included, too). And if it seems odd that two canceled shows are pitted against each other, it’s for good reason: Happy Endings and Party Down, like many shows (Gilmore Girls, Friends) are finding new, dedicated audiences thanks to Hulu. You might say Party Down, which consistently rated 0.0 during both of its seasons, is the American Football of comedy.
We could not be more thrilled to host the first Screen Scholars March Madness media tournament. Be sure to check back as we discuss these bracketed shows and examine the programs’ strengths and merits. Voting starts now and closes tomorrow at 6 p.m. The results will be posts and discusses Saturday. It’s like the real thing, but with 32 comedies, 16 dramas, four reality shows, two game shows, and ten talk shows!
See your top 32 here.