The 23 (5) Biggest Film And TV Disappointments Of 2013

Some of the year’s lousiest movies and TV shows were the ones we were looking forward to the most.




1. Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Why we were excited: Geek god Joss Whedon returned to TV with a series that expands on the Marvel universe he helped bring to life in The Avengers. The show focuses on covert law-enforcement organization S.H.I.E.L.D., which has been around since 1965 but rarely given its own spotlight.
Why we were disappointed: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, this is not. It’s not even Dollhouse. The characters are flat, the plots forgettable, and the budgetary constraints make the Marvel universe feel more limited than ever. Even Samuel L. Jackson looked bored doing his cameo as Nick Fury.
What the critics said: “The shame is that a series about a band of heroes trying to hunt down more potential heroes could be the perfect antidote to TV’s own overly dark cliché: the anti-hero. But instead it resists the call, too self-serious to be really goofy, and yet too fan-boyish to rescue even one hour of television from mediocrity.” - Willa Paskin, Slate

3. Star Trek Into Darkness

Why we were excited: The 2009 Star Trek was one of the rare reboots that managed to incorporate the original franchise. In doing so, it appealed to hardcore Trekkies and new fans, geeks and otherwise. The sequel promised much of the same — plus Benedict Cumberbatch!
Why we were disappointed: You know that iconic Star Trek character Benedict Cumberbatch supposedly wasn’t playing? Turns out he was. The big reveal caused massive eye rolls, proving both clunky and unnecessary. Also, why was Alice Eve in a bikini? No wonder diehard fans hated it.
What the critics said: “It’s hard to emerge from Into Darkness without a feeling of disappointment, even betrayal. Maybe it is too late to lament the militarization of Star Trek, but in his pursuit of blockbuster currency, Mr. Abrams has sacrificed a lot of its idiosyncrasy and, worse, the large-spirited humanism that sustained it.” - A.O. Scott, The New York Times

6. The Following

Why we were excited: Kevin Bacon made the jump to small-screen with a serial killer drama that looked sharp, twisted, and genuinely frightening. The series swore not to hold back in terms of violence, making it a heavy show that felt like an impressive choice for network television.
Why we were disappointed: Yes, it was violent, but it was also really, really dumb. Everyone on the show — particularly absurdly incompetent FBI agent Ryan Hardy (Bacon) — made consistently awful choices that had viewers screaming at their TVs. Or just changing the channel to something that made sense.
What the critics said: “The Following’s fundamental problem is neither its gore nor its brutality; it’s the display of arrogance. Tangled up in easily avoidable clichés of the genre, this is a show that is entirely too pleased with itself and its pretentious concept.” - Hank Stuever, Washington Post

8. Dexter

Why we were excited: Dexter had its ups and downs, but Season 7 was a major step in the right direction and ended on a high note. With enough time to plan a great final arc for the serial killer antihero, the writers would be able to give Dexter the ending it deserved.
Why we were disappointed: Instead they turned him into a lumberjack. Seriously. The series finale was shockingly bad — Deb deserved so much better, and so did we — but the season as a whole was a sloppy mess. Did I mention he became a lumberjack?
What the critics said: “Dexter had been running on creative fumes the past few seasons, and Sunday night’s series finale — despite its emotional flourishes — merely underscored that this was a series well past its expiration date.” - Brian Lowry, Variety

13. New Girl

Why we were excited: In its first two seasons, New Girl was a fairly consistent delight, getting better as it went along. Season 2 brought Nick and Jess together — fairly soon for a will-they-or-won’t-they sitcom romance! — and suggested new storylines exploring their relationship.
Why we were disappointed: Something happened between seasons, because Season 3 has seen a major drop in quality, with weak storytelling and writing. Bringing back Coach felt like a good thing (everyone loves Damon Wayans, Jr.), but none of the pieces are coming together.
What the critics said: “Something just feels off about this season and it’s not bad, but it’s not the shiny gem that I look forward to every week, either. I think this might be what mediocrity feels like and I don’t like it.” - MaryAnn Sleasman, TV.com

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