TV studios must adapt to changing audiences. Tropes audiences enjoyed only a few years ago no longer fly.
Here are familiar tropes of yesteryear that modern audiences wouldn’t watch.
Game Show Kisses
Game show hosts used to kiss female contestants on the lips, not even caring whether she wanted it or not.
That wouldn’t go over well today.
“Joking” About Spousal Abuse
Archie Bunker notoriously joked about what he ought to do to Ethel, and audiences worldwide laughed knowingly.
Today’s audiences don’t find spousal abuse quite as funny.
Predatory Men for the Laughs
Lots of sitcoms from the 70s portrayed sexually aggressive men as funny. They’d take making women uncomfortable to the extreme for the laughs.
Outrageous Racial Stereotypes
Far too many shows relied on outlandish stereotypes for laughs. Though by the 70s and 80s, most avoided stereotypes surrounding black Americans, Asians were free game. Many shows had white folks acting as Chinese stereotypes in restaurants and laundry mats.
Developing Female Characters
Far too many shows rely on sexual assault for female character development. Soap operas are notorious for it, but you can see it even in modern shows like Game of Thrones.
The “Very Special Episode”
Some shows made deals with governments to cover heavy topics like drug use or teenage pregnancy to send messages to their viewers. Modern viewers would roll their eyes at such pandering.
Sitcoms in the 90s or early 2000s went two ways with gay jokes. They either had an overly flamboyant gay character (caricature) everyone could laugh at or a straight character with “gay qualities” (we’re looking at you, Chandler!) everyone could laugh at.
Al Bundy is the poster boy for fat jokes, but Married with Children isn’t the only show that relies on body-shaming humor. Home Improvement and even House employed the trope on occasion.
The hit movie The Devil Wears Prada made fun of this trope by having Miranda constantly call the tiny Andy “fat.”
The clip show was an inexpensive way for the studio to pump out content. In today’s age of on-demand television, a clip show wouldn’t have the same impact.
All White Cast
Far too many shows set in major diverse cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles only featured white people.
Friends and Seinfeld, both set in New York, had suspiciously few characters of color during their long runs. Modern audiences expect shows to be more inclusive.
Boys Being Boys
Everyone loved Barney in How I Met Your Mother, but the character was awful. He constantly lied to women and tricked them into intimacy, but the show made it a gigantic joke.
Howard’s creepiness in The Big Bang Theory was similar, but at least in that show, they generally acknowledged his behavior was creepy and wrong.
Sitcom men are useless lugs. Raymond doesn’t do anything to help his overwhelmed wife, and Tim Allen can’t figure out how to wash the dishes when his wife is away.
Modern audiences expect men to be better.
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Looking for movies that redefine the word horror? Sometimes, it’s not just about the spooky movies you’ve heard of, sometimes it’s the ones that delve deep into horror that have a greater impact.
Sit back, try to relax, and dive into these 12 films that are absolutely bone-chilling.
Beyond the Stars & Off the Radar: 25 Sci-Fi Series Begging for Your Binge
Like the kaleidoscopic worlds they’re frequently set in, the sci-fi genre is an almost bottomless ocean of books, comics, movies, and TV shows — many of which are worth seeing or reading for one reason or another.
80s Unearthed: The 24 Hidden Film Gems That Hollywood Forgot, But You Won’t
While some films from the 80s have become iconic, etching themselves into our collective memories, a treasure trove of lesser-known films has gradually faded into obscurity.
Not to worry, we’ve compiled a list of 25 gems, based on IMDb, that graced our screens with their offbeat charm, eccentric characters, and captivating narratives that defy convention.
25 Movies You May Only Watch Once Because They’ll Destroy You
Some movies can leave such a profound impact on us that we can’t bear watching them again. Ever. These films stay with us long after the credits roll, haunting our thoughts and leaving us emotionally shattered.
Here, we’ve compiled a list of 25 movies deemed one-time experiences by viewers on an online forum who have been through the emotional wringer.
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