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post #1 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 12:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Is it just me, or are television writers relying on the old, "(insert time period here) earlier way to much. It seems like at least once each evening I'm watching some show that starts out that way.

I suppose they're trying to create mystery, but it's so over used it just comes across as lazy to me. It's getting irritating. It's rarely necessary. Breaking Bad used a form of it, but they were pretty creative with it at least.

Tonight it was Agents Of Shields turn.

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post #2 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 01:20 AM
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While the "cold opening" has been a staple since the early 60s, when it was used in a series, it was always used in that series. These days, it happen where it isn't expected, and can be jarring. It's a literary technique. Some shows had a teaser or preamble before the theme that was repeated during the show itself.

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post #3 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 08:32 AM - Thread Starter
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My point is, most of the time, it's un-necessary. Take the episode of SHIELD I referenced. What purpose did it serve? Edit out that beginning, and what are we missing?

BB on the other hand, we see Walt open his car trunk and check out a very powerful gun. We don't find out why he has it until about 8 episodes later (or was it 16?). There is motivation for that reveal, because we already suspect the possibility of Walt being on the run.

Anyway, I just bring it up because it seems to be very overused these days.

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post #4 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 09:21 AM
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Any technique can be overused.

The main advantage of jumping back in time like that is that it can give the audience a sense of anticipation, especially if it shows something stunning and then jumps back in time to show them how it got to that point.

It just depends on the writing and the context. The technique itself isn't flawed, it's how they use it and everything around it that makes it work or not. If it's not used effectively, it seems like old hat. If it is used effectively, it can be unforgettable.

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post #5 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 09:55 AM
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Yea hate that stuff....dont tell me whats gonna happen just let it happen & let me be surprised.


You know what i notice lately too thats really annoying -- people answering questions with the word So.

For example:

Jill: How do you see apple stock doing the rest of the year Jack ?

Jack: So they just reported sales of 9 million iphone5s....

I hate that.

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post #6 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcowboy7 View Post

You know what i notice lately too thats really annoying -- people answering questions with the word So.For example: Jill: How do you see apple stock doing the rest of the year Jack ?Jack: So they just reported sales of 9 million iphone5s....I hate that.

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post #7 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Tulpa View Post

Any technique can be overused. The main advantage of jumping back in time like that is that it can give the audience a sense of anticipation, especially if it shows something stunning and then jumps back in time to show them how it got to that point.It just depends on the writing and the context. The technique itself isn't flawed, it's how they use it and everything around it that makes it work or not. If it's not used effectively, it seems like old hat. If it is used effectively, it can be unforgettable.

Right. And when it's used almost every night, it's rarely used effectively. Also, I think it's more effective when you have known the characters for some time and actually care about them. Refer to my examples of BB and Agents of SHIELD.

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post #8 of 8 Old 10-02-2013, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by leebo View Post

Right. And when it's used almost every night, it's rarely used effectively

Chalk it up to another technique beaten to death or misused. It's not like we have a shortage.

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