You done? Good.
I have some basic complaints about this article (aside from the pretentiously proprietary, "Hey that's my thing"). First of all, it's terribly written, with a thesis statement that isn't supported by the body of the article. Secondly, if LOST is the only example of deep, thought-provoking television that the author could come up with, perhaps she's not anything close the the authority she writes like she is. I mean, what about Studio 60? Babylon 5? Soap?
Deeper than that, though:
Sure, there are some astounding clunkers, but television is getting better and better. Writing is more compelling, better actors are becoming attached to televised projects.What? Tell me, do you watch anything that's actually on, or do you only Netflix dead shows? Writing is not getting better in television. It's exactly the same as in any other medium: Primarily competent but bland with a few sparkling gems that stand out from the mire. And since Aaron Sorkin has departed from television for awhile with no return in sight, JMS is doing Superman (correct me if I'm wrong on that one), Joss Whedon's busy with the Avengers and Cap, Andrew Marlowe's doing Castle (one of the aforementioned gems), and... no other great TV writers spring to mind.
Which means that we're left with Glee and (shudder) CSI.
What about that "better actors" comment?
Anyone who doesn't know who Richard Mulligan is should be ashamed of themselves. And from the same show, Robert Guillaume. From other great shows: Andreas Katsulos, Peter Jurasik, Alan Tudyk, Ed Wasser, Jewel Staite, Katheryn Helmond, Bradley Whitford, Matthew Perry (I'm forgiving him for Friends), Timothy Busfield, Thomas Gibson, Stana Katic, Emily Proctor (I don't forgive her for CSI: Miami, though), Richard Schiff, Dule Hill, Kathryn Joosten, Paul Gross, Nathan Fillion, Kelsey Grammer, Neil Patrick Harris, John Larroquette, John Lithgow, French Stewart, Robert Carlyle, Michael C. Hall. I'm sure there are more that I missed, but I think my point has been made.
The acting is as good now as it ever has been, the writing is the same. The trick is that most of everything is crap. Sturgeon's Law. It's not that the television is getting better, it's that there's so much more of it that it's easier to find the good stuff.
Television won't just "get better." Sorry, but it won't. As with any other medium, it's only as good as the people in it, and the people who pay attention to it. I can agree that television has been sidelined as an entertainment medium. I can't agree with... anything else in that article.
How will TV get better? Simple. We need to have higher expectations. There should be no "good enough," no "well, it's only a sitcom," no acceptance of the mediocre.
It can be better. But it always starts with the audience, and that, kids, is you.
-Gets off soapbox-