Mandy Eve-Barnett's Blog for Readers & Writers

My Book News & Advocate for the Writing Community ©

Good Writing and Story Structure in TV programs…

May 2, 2014


We all have our favorite TV series, whether current or past but what makes them appeal to us? The writing has to be excellent with a strong plot line and characters we can love. I admit I’m behind the times in watching Breaking Bad (my main evening pursuit is writing!) but I was persuaded to watch one episode and got hooked. Rather than empathizing with Skylar, the mother figure, protecting her children, I really loved Walt and disliked the wife. This seems to be a common feeling among the audience and one that surprised the writer and producer.

See this link for interesting facts about the series:

When I thought about Walt, I remembered that I loved J.R. Ewing not the sappy Bobby! Do we love a villain above a goody two shoes? Obviously, the style and writing of these two programs is vastly different but both had bad boys that were the main characters. An alternative is Dr. Who, always the hero of the story, no matter how he is portrayed in his numerous guises.


Writers have come and gone in many long running series, but keep to the main characteristics (most of the time!) so we continue to love our favorite characters. We become engaged in their ‘lives’ and miss them, as if they were real when the series ends or is discontinued. Take for example my impatience to watch the last season of Dexter. I know it is the final one but I miss the character a lot.

Another series I found was Weeds, which is, to my mind, a tongue in cheek story line. It is obviously unrealistic as drug runners are not as accomodating as the one’s encountered during Nancy’s naive pot supplying antics. It leaves many questions unanswered in why a surburb housewife would be able to do what Nancy does and for the most part get away with it. If you view the episodes light-heartedly and as a piece of fun then it is enjoyable.

Which TV series do you find compelling – past or current?

What makes them your favorite?

Fun Day Prompt:

Write a scene using your favorite character from a series you love or loved.






  1. Me too. Good luck to you!


  2. I’ve always found the relationship between an actor portraying the character and the writers who created them an interesting one. Sometimes, the actor changes the writer’s perspective of who that character is or can be (and they get to stick around a little longer than maybe originally intended (i.e. The Walking Dead)). I think there’s been a great resurgence in television – a lot of great writing right now.


    • Yes it is interesting how some characters become regulars! Most certainly better writing as you say in a lot of series now.
      Thanks for dropping by.
      Which are your favorites?


      • Unfortunately, I don’t watch too much current tv as I haven’t paid for cable in about 3 years, but, a few past and present favorites are Buffy the Vampire Slayer, La Femme Nikita (Canadian version) Game of Thrones, Hannibal, Sherlock. And Netflix is helpful for finding new things. I love Dexter too, but the series finale left a bad taste…have you seen it yet?


      • Waiting on Dexter on Netflix – I have read spoilers of course and comments on how it all ended but still miss him 😦
        Most of my TV is Netflix now – when I’m not writing that is.


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