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Jumping the Shark

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Jumping the shark is a phrase used in television used to describe when a show has gone too far and pushed the boundaries of what is acceptable and believable in its given world. The phrase came from a Happy Daze episode where the writers had Fonzie literally jump over a shark. Since then the phrase has become sort of an industry term as a manner of critique. So what other jumping the shark moments have we seen in television history? Surely there are plenty but here are the ones that stuck out the most to me.

UNITED STATES – SEPTEMBER 20: HAPPY DAYS – “Fonzie Goes to Hollywood, Part III” – Season Five – 9/20/77, Fonzie (Henry Winkler) accepted a challenge to jump over a shark tank while water skiing., (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)

Overall most shows have at least one of these moments when they go on for longer than originally planned. The sweet spot for 1 hour drama’s seems to be 5 seasons, very rarely are they good after this point. If a show is not planned out from beginning to end before it starts filming then at some point someone is going to have to make some shit up and that almost never ends well.

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