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Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,194
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

So, I think it is only a matter of time (what with Tweets, etc) before the TV audience will become the Directors.

Think about this. A TV show starts out with a plot (very fluid). The actors/characters are introduced to us/the viewers.

We are given several choices on the 1)direction the 2 or 3 main characters will go in, 2)who these same characters will interact with (2 or 3 choices), etc (use your imagination, but give guidelines and limits).

Then the writers scramble to write the story based on the viewer's tweets (must be quick turn around).

Then we see the final results that week.

It wouldn't be easy for the actors, writers or producers because they would have to REALLY use their imagination for the twists and turns we/the audience would give based on our choices.

As with everything, the majority rules.

This would (at times) be frustrating because we'd say, "I didn't vote that way". However, we'd feel more a part of the show.

Like we do on our different Soaps. We don't vote on them but I think a lot of people like soaps because no matter how frustrated we get with them we can't always predict how they'll turn or even if some people go out suddenly.

That would mean we/the audience would have the right to vote off a person on the show.

What do you guys think of this? I think we are heading down that path. That said, I don't know if the writers and actors are capable of wracking their brain that much to turn it around that quickly.

Most of the time we see the same shows with people doing the same thing. I have read here how much everyone likes a show that (at least) starts out something different.

I don't see this kind of show happening on the big regular TV channels. I think it would take a cable channel to do this. It would have to be able to fail and these large "free" channels have too many money backers to be willing to take a chance on a TV show like that.

I would think the actors would be better to be people who aren't big name because they wouldn't be happy if we/the viewers voted them off. I'm sorry Halle Berry viewers but I can't help thinking that's how her show Exant. She has really big money and names behind her. Some think it is a good show, some think it stinks.

I just think it's sad that a show like Reckless was 'allowed' to fail when obviously so many people thought it was so well written/acted and filmed.

What are your ideas on the type of show? Come on, use your imagination my fellow TV lovers/viewers/brainiacs.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,194
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

Come on people!! I see you looking, just give your opinion. Everyone here counts. Even if you only want to say one or two words or lines.

Just jump in. Life is not about observing. Life is about taking part (be it just by saying "Hello" or "Good-bye".

Come on, I know you're out there. All of you count.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,544
Registered: ‎03-05-2014

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

Hi Annabelle, I'll jump in with my thoughts, for what they are worthSmile. On the one hand, TV is often just a form of mindless entertainment and so is on more often than not as company, voices and sound and light. So I'm not sure I want to have to interact with it.

On the other hand, I am one of those people who watches Survivor and loves to figure out who should have said what to whom and when and who should switch alliances etc. etc so I can see the kind of show you are talking about becoming fairly popular and driving people to social media to discuss what should happen and why they voted the way they did and then watching to see how the writers carry out the voted-upon plotline.

I think this would work with shows like soap operas or even with something more sophisticated like The Good Wife, but the key to its success is all in the writing - but I guess that is true of all TV, isn't it?{#emotions_dlg.laugh} And, like you say, it has to be on cable, not the networks.

I think it could be fun, but I would also worry about how bad things could get having witnessed some pretty appalling behavior on these boards and others. If people get vested in a show or character, it could turn very ugly indeed.

Anybody else have some thoughts about Annabelle's idea?

Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,194
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

Thanks for posting mews. You made some really good points. Actually started my brain thinking.

I guess it MIGHT work but more likely people would consider it too much work. Most people (myself included) likes to watch TV as a form of 'forgetting about the day'.

So the thought of taxing my brain trying to figure out.....say...."Do I want John to romance Jane?" certainly seems like work......right?

It would be an interesting social experiment.

After all, there are people who live to tweet on these TV programs. These same people are probably the one's who vote on Dancing With the Stars, etc.

People do seem to like to be able to voice their opinion (The Voice). However, I think they'd loose interest if it became necessary to come up with decisions on an entire TV show. Perhaps if they limited the amount of choices.

I'm sure the audience would get up in arms (so to speak) when whomever they chose to kiss John was not the person kissed on the show.

But after all, isn't that what happens to our soaps. We want it to go one way and the writers send it in a different direction.

I find this interesting because I buy the soap magazines and I find there are many, many people who think like I do, (or many of us here think) yet these writers totally ignore the masses and go in what seems to be a wrong direction.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,194
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

Come on people......give me some of your thoughts on my idea.....would it work?

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,267
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

Not thinking too hard about this. Guess I'm thinking about the millions of people who vote for their favorite dancer and singer, so I'm not sure it's too much work if you make it easy with, as you say, limited choices. Thinking about how those shows vote, I could see people making kind of boring choices. Isn't majority rule kind of the safest route? Would need to limit the voting so production can make the show look good for the next week. Not sure how quickly a scripted show goes from writing to production. I could see this working more as a web series maybe. Not network.
Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,544
Registered: ‎03-05-2014

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

Alter Ego, I think you got it right - this could work as a web series since people watching shows like House of Cards are interested enough in a program to make the effort to watch it, instead of just turning on the TV and watching what comes through the cable or over the antennae.

Limiting the plotlines you vote on and making sure the choices are all interesting would be very important. Maybe one week you vote on the main plotline of the show and the next week you can vote on a side story and the descriptions could be vague so that writers could still put in some twists.

It could be interesting...

Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,194
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

I would have a difficult time believing the characters are moving in the direction the people voted for.

I think it would be the direction the writers decided they should go in. It would just be too tempting for them to skew the characters and plots in the direction they wanted.

I don't think it would work. It's an interesting idea though. Oh! Well! I don't even understand all about tweets.

I do know I don't tweet or sign up for them. I think they get people in trouble and it's another way of saying, "Look at me". Kind of like a selfie.

Super Contributor
Posts: 285
Registered: ‎06-08-2012

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

I do believe years ago a show decided to do one episode where the viewers would vote between three endings. I wish I could remember which show, but I don't, I liked the concept so it would interest me. I going to look up which show it was, I do remember it was an NBC drama.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,223
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Ever Thought About A TV Show Where The Viewer Decides the Direction of The Main Characters?

I think this was done a couple of years ago on one of the obscure channels. The viewer could submit the ending.

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