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How do you write a hit TV show? It’s actually pretty easy since almost all TV shows are pretty much the same.

Four Kinds of Shows

There are four kinds of shows:

  • Crime and Law Shows -
  • Situation Comedies
  • Weird Characters
  • Dumb Reality Shows

All Crime Shows Are Law & Order

Law and Order, Bones, Castle, CSI, are all basically the same show. Young hot investigators, usually in tight fitting tops, some cleavage, rarely anyone in uniform.

Also all shows must make a political statement of bad law passed down from the bench. Technicalities’ are the bad guys best friend.

Situation Comedies Are All Rosanne

You need a dufus, overweight husband who gets in all kinds of problems, hot wife with brains (not Rosanne but like Clair on Modern Family), and two or more bratty kids and a quirky neighbor. Add in a number of bad jokes, miscommunication, and sexual double entendre references, and you’ve got a winner.

Weird Characters are all Breaking Bad

We tried Batman in the 60’s, James Bond type spin offs in the 70’s, compassionate do-gooders in the 80’s and good cop bad cop in the 90s.

On network TV violence is to a minimum. The good guy never shoots the bad guy who has a hostage. On Showtime they’d both be dead. Happy ending.

Cable has opened up a whole new market of “good” bad guys.

Gangster boss Tony Soprano, “Sons of Anarchy,” “Breaking Bad” each has semi-bad guys. Then there’s “Dexter” the serial killer cop we all love.

But for blood, gore, and nudity you can’t beat “Game of Thrones.” And a 4’5” leading man only adds to the possibilities.

Reality Shows

Not sure which is more amazing, that Keeping Up with the Kardashians” even got on the air, or that it’s been on for six seasons. Both tell you all you need to know about the viewing public.

TV shows like, “American Idol,” “Great Race,” “Big Brother,” “Hell’s Kitchen,” or “America’s Next Top Model,” all have a simple formula. Set up the most attractive people you can find to fail.

Eight weeks of nightly failures is more enticing to viewers than a series of quick winners.

Some Final Thoughts

Thanks to these tips you should have a successful show on the air by the fall schedule. Just remember the one simple rule. Crush someone whenever possible.

Nothing makes for better TV than the tears of a loser.

What’s your idea for a hit TV show? Comments below.

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