History Main / BritishBrevity

18th Aug '16 12:33:20 PM Tre
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[[AC:[[SciFiChannel SyFy]]]]

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[[AC:[[SciFiChannel SyFy]]]][[AC:Creator/{{Syfy}}]]
15th Aug '16 1:34:29 AM shamblingdead2
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* ''Series/ManAboutTheHouse'' had 39 episodes in six seasons, in contrast with its American remake ''Series/ThreesCompany'', which had 172 episode. The first season of ''Series/ThreesCompany'' followed the trope, with just six episodes.
9th Aug '16 8:29:41 AM WolfWalrus
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** The DVD adds two half-hour long supplements which could be considered parts of the show within the context of the framing device.
** The SpiritualSuccessor ''Series/ManToManWithDeanLearner'' is equally short, having only six episodes of its own.
30th Jul '16 9:08:30 AM theek01
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* ''Series/PleaseLikeMe'' had six episodes in the first season, and ten episodes each in the second and third.
13th Jul '16 12:46:29 PM mimitchi33
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* Many of Ragdoll Productions' shows have run for more than 13 episodes a season, including ''Series/{{Teletubbies}}'', ''Series/RosieAndJim'' and ''Series/TotsTV''.

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* Many Most of Ragdoll Productions' shows have run for more than 13 episodes a season, including ''Series/{{Teletubbies}}'', ''Series/RosieAndJim'' and ''Series/TotsTV''.
13th Jul '16 12:45:55 PM mimitchi33
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* Many of Ragdoll Productions' shows have run for more than 13 episodes a season, including ''Series/{{Teletubbies}}'', ''Series/RosieAndJim'' and ''Series/TotsTV''.



On the opposite token, the reason American shows tend to be so long is boiled down to simply Money. Most American TV series are produced barely breaking even, and some will even operate at a loss. The magic word for any show to make a profit is "UsefulNotes/{{syndication}}"; the real money comes when a show makes it into reruns, which can last indefinitely and don't have the overhead costs of actually producing the show. However, the minimum episode number for syndication tends to be extremely high, often "88". Most networks are shy about airing reruns of a series unless they hit 100+ episodes, so they don't end up rerunning the episodes too often (and risk annoying viewers, who would tune out, resulting in fewer people watching the commercials). It's not unheard of for a low-rated and/or critically savaged series to get [[OnlyBarelyRenewed inexplicably renewed for a fourth or even fifth season]] simply to reach this 88-episode threshold (''Series/TilDeath'' is held up as a shining example, as the creator readily admitted he sold the show to the network for an absolute pittance to reach this. Similarly, ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise'', which misfired at its start and didn't recover fast enough, reportedly only got a fourth season for the same reason.) Because of this, the standard contract for a production company (and often for the actors) when a new show is bought by a network is seven years/seasons, regardless of whether or not that many episodes end up being ordered.

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On the opposite token, the reason American shows tend to be so long is boiled down to simply Money.money. Most American TV series are produced barely breaking even, and some will even operate at a loss. The magic word for any show to make a profit is "UsefulNotes/{{syndication}}"; the real money comes when a show makes it into reruns, which can last indefinitely and don't have the overhead costs of actually producing the show. However, the minimum episode number for syndication tends to be extremely high, often "88". Most networks are shy about airing reruns of a series unless they hit 100+ episodes, so they don't end up rerunning the episodes too often (and risk annoying viewers, who would tune out, resulting in fewer people watching the commercials). It's not unheard of for a low-rated and/or critically savaged series to get [[OnlyBarelyRenewed inexplicably renewed for a fourth or even fifth season]] simply to reach this 88-episode threshold (''Series/TilDeath'' is held up as a shining example, as the creator readily admitted he sold the show to the network for an absolute pittance to reach this. Similarly, ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise'', which misfired at its start and didn't recover fast enough, reportedly only got a fourth season for the same reason.) Because of this, the standard contract for a production company (and often for the actors) when a new show is bought by a network is seven years/seasons, regardless of whether or not that many episodes end up being ordered.
12th Jul '16 2:24:34 AM MorganWick
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There are a number of reasons for this, the simplest being that British shows usually have a fairly small creative team. It's not uncommon for one person to single-handedly write every episode of a show, as Creator/StevenMoffat did with ''Series/{{Coupling}}'', or David Renwick with ''Series/JonathanCreek'' (compare American sitcoms, which are almost always "written by committee"). The shorter working schedule means that a British show can often focus more on a tighter cast of regular characters, whereas American shows frequently have to create more of an {{ensemble|Cast}}, to allow their actors to have sufficient breaks during the long, grueling shooting schedule. British TV can also spend a year producing as much screen time as an American show produces in less than two months, resulting in a more concentrated "series" (called a "season" in the US; so a UK series [[SeparatedByACommonLanguage can consist of 10 "series"]]). The unpredictable weather and long winters in the UK may be a contributory factor, as it may be difficult for production teams to commit to long filming schedules.

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There are a number of reasons for this, the simplest being that British shows usually have a fairly small creative team. It's not uncommon for one person to single-handedly write every episode of a show, as Creator/StevenMoffat did with ''Series/{{Coupling}}'', or David Renwick with ''Series/JonathanCreek'' (compare American sitcoms, which are almost always "written by committee"). The shorter working schedule means that a British show can often focus more on a tighter cast of regular characters, whereas American shows frequently have to create more of an {{ensemble|Cast}}, to allow their actors to have sufficient breaks during the long, grueling shooting schedule. British TV can also spend a year producing as much screen time as an American show produces in less than two months, resulting in a more concentrated "series" (called a "season" in the US; so a UK series [[SeparatedByACommonLanguage can consist of 10 "series"]]). The [[UsefulNotes/BritishWeather unpredictable weather weather]] and long winters in the UK may be a contributory factor, as it may be difficult for production teams to commit to long filming schedules.
23rd Jun '16 12:32:40 PM AnonymousMaterials
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** Similarly, its [[TransAtlanticEquivalent American counterpart]] had three seasons which were each six episodes long.



* ''WesternAnimation/BojackHorseman'' (Creator/{{Netflix}}) has had two 13-episodes seasons and its 3rd season is scheduled to premiere in 2016 with another 13 episodes.

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* ''WesternAnimation/BojackHorseman'' (Creator/{{Netflix}}) has had two 13-episodes 12-episode seasons (plus one Chirstmas special) and its 3rd season is scheduled to premiere in 2016 with another 13 12 episodes.
18th Jun '16 12:15:12 PM dmcreif
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* ''Series/BreakingBad'' -- Five seasons, 62 episodes. The first season had seven episodes, the following three had 13 each, and the fifth and final season had 16 episodes split over two eight-episode mini-seasons.
* ''Series/MadMen'' -- The first six seasons had 13 episodes each, while the seventh and final season will have 14 episodes, split into two seven-episode mini-seasons much like ''Breaking Bad'' did.

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* ''Series/BreakingBad'' -- Five seasons, 62 episodes. The first season had seven episodes, episodes[[note]]cut short by a writer's strike[[/note]], the following three had 13 each, and the fifth and final season had 16 episodes split over two eight-episode mini-seasons.
* ''Series/MadMen'' -- The first six seasons had 13 episodes each, while the seventh and final season will have had 14 episodes, split into two seven-episode mini-seasons much like ''Breaking Bad'' did.



* '''Series/BetterCallSaul''' -- First seasons ran for 10 episodes, and the second one, whilst announced as having 13, ultimately ran for 10.

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* '''Series/BetterCallSaul''' ''Series/BetterCallSaul'' -- First seasons season ran for 10 episodes, and the second one, whilst announced as having 13, ultimately ran for 10.
16th Jun '16 2:18:27 PM DougDevilsMutt
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* ''WesternAnimation/BojackHorseman'' (Creator/{{Netflix}}) has had two 13-episodes seasons and its 3rd season is scheduled to premiere in 2016 with another 13 episodes.
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