It’s only been a couple of years since the “Midseason Finale” became a thing, which has quickly led to the dilemma depicted in today’s strip.
I feel like the deluge of January and February premieres is even more significant than the fall ones. Fall premieres, of both the season and series variety, are like waking up from hibernation; it’s been months, usually, since you saw your familiar shows, and half the time you need to hit Hulu to even remember how the previous season ended. And you have to begin the tedious process of sampling new series, determining which ones have potential, which ones can be safely dismissed, and which ones you should avoid getting attached to, lest they become the first casualty of the fall (RIP, Welcome To The Family. You had…potential).
January, though, is like coming back from a long commercial break; the season has had a chance to build some momentum, new premises have been established, Big Bads have been revealed. It’s a more exciting time for TV fanatics, but still one that’s fraught with peril. The DVR dilemma mentioned in panel 2 is real – for quite a while, Thursday nights were a minefield, with Community, Parks & Rec, The Office, 30 Rock, and The Big Bang Theory all overlapping, plus our cable only got the East Coast feed of Comedy Central, meaning we had to make the painful decision to stop recording The Daily Show and Colbert Report. Hey, Comcast, is it really asking that much to be able to auto-record the later showings without getting four instances of the same episode?
So, yeah, at the risk of sounding like a paid shill, Hulu Plus is the way to go, along with whatever combination of your cable company’s VOD, and any supplemental methods of obtaining your favorite shows, which I prefer to think of as better-than-legitimate. Good preparation is the key to surviving Midseason Overload
So, what midseason premieres are you the most excited about? The TV Gods have been generous, scheduling the premiere of Community’s fifth season for tonight (though, y’know, a fall premiere with a 22-episode order would have been nice), and after that I’ll be counting the days until Arrow returns on January 15.