Here's what I think.

I think that Seven Second Delay isn't in a state where it produces singularly great shows anymore. Sure, sometimes "the shows that worked" were few and far between, but you could count on a handful of classics every year. I don't think that's the case anymore. I'd say the last stand-out was "How Big Is Your Cubicle?" from October of last year.

And yet. I don't think this is a bad thing. Because in my mind the show's undergone a subtle shift over the last few months. The concepts are less ambitious, meaning Ken and Andy don't strike out on great ideas like "Fever", yet they're not unambitious enough so as to become a basic talk show. The show is a little more continuity-driven. It happened with the Metropolitan Diary, which, unlike the Don McLean feud, actually began on Seven Second Delay, and it didn't pay off for a couple of weeks. The giggling girls laugh track wasn't just a conceit to fill out one episode, it looks like it's a semi-permanent part of the show.

Even through the bad shows, Seven Second Delay has always succeeded (on some level) on Andy and Ken's personalities. Even if a show's not working, Andy or Ken rarely go down an ugly direction themselves, and as a result, the show can't follow. The show, now, seems a little less-concept driven, and a little more personality-driven, which maybe is what you need, after 15 years on the air, to stay off the bottom of the barrel.

Yeah, I think the show's on the rebound. But like you care what I think.


Anonymous said...

I think the Sophie's Choice episode is the best in years.

Anonymous said...

Better concepts and ambitions would be nice, though.

Maybe it's just one of those "In my childhoof, it always snowed on christmas" kinda things, but I do believe the show had more steam before Andy's midlife hiatus after 9/11.

SueB said...

i don't care - you are right.
you are overthinking as usual. talk to your shrink about that.

Aaron said...

The Met Diary thing is definitely a great example. The first Met Diary show was awful, but the blogosphere results and ultimately the Making it Right episode made it worth it. The earlier Andy wouldn't have been able to see that through to the end.

I think that the foreplay has taken on greater importance, because it is so comfortable that it could probably carry the show if they were to let it. But I know I listen to the show for the risks they take and for the potential for failure that no other show has. And I find myself wishing they'd take bigger risks sometimes, rather than Ken vetoing ideas because he thinks they won't work.

Anonymous said...

I gotta say that the two of them just being there at 6 is enough for me. If the show in a trainwreck, so be it. At least we were all there. SSD is the meat and potatoes of wed. evening. I've gotten every show since like 94, God! 12 years! These guys have helped me believe that I am indeed not alone in this world. Where's that kid that Pwned Andy, hes gotta be like 20 now?
A solemn appreciation for SSD no matter what happens.

Anonymous said...

I just started listening the past few months, and have been thoroughly entertained and excited.

Please don't ruin it for me being one those "Yeah...used to be cool.." people.