Can Nickelodeon experience a Live-action Renaissance?

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Oct 23, 2014
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#1
Recently, Nickelodeon has been stepping up it's game in regards to the quality of their animated output. Starting with the cult favorite, Harvey Beaks, and continuing with the recent break out success of The Loud House. And if some of their upcoming Cartoons like Welcome to the Wayne and Pinky Malinky (which believe it or not, looks much better than the original Cartoon Network pilot) are an indication, good things might be ahead for Nick's animated lineup.

Such cannot be said about their Live-action shows. Unlike Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon didn't just produce animated series, they also became known for innovative Live-action shows as well. From Clarissa Explains it All, to The Adventures of Pete and Pete, to Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. But somewhere around the 2000s, Nick just kind of, stopped trying with their shows. Now, their Live-action output is so homogenized and dry, it's almost impossible to tell each show apart. And it doesn't look like things are improving much anytime soon.

The only new Live-action series I enjoyed from Nick in recent years, is 100 Things To Do before High School. And in typical Nick fashion, the show was death slotted, bounced around the schedule with little advertising, and eventually axed without telling anyone. With Nickelodeon improving their animated shows, can they do the same with their Live-action? Animation will always be Nick's biggest strength, but having healthy lineup of quality Live-action shows is equally as important. I'd love for Nickelodeon to come out with another show like Pete and Pete or Ned's Declassified and actually be a success. Dan Schneider can't save them forever, and it's time Nick realizes this.
 

kanc

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#2
Along with animated shows like SpongeBob and Loud House did well in reruns as well as premieres. But Harvey Beaks were doing ok, but seeing as how Harvey Beaks doesn't get any airtime more, it's sad.

But let's not forget that live action shows did well in ratings and produce some airtime are Henry Danger and Thundermans. These are doing better after Sam and Cat canned two years ago.
 
Oct 23, 2014
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#3
Along with animated shows like SpongeBob and Loud House did well in reruns as well as premieres. But Harvey Beaks were doing ok, but seeing as how Harvey Beaks doesn't get any airtime more, it's sad.
That's why I called Harvey Beaks a Cult favorite. Did lackluster on ratings, but has a loyal cult following.
 

PinkiePie97

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#4
Outside of 100 Things, I haven't liked any of Nick's live action shows since Big Time Rush ended, but I think that's more me getting older than anything else. I did watch the first season of Henry Danger, and while it wasn't enough to hold my interest, it's nothing that bad. What I've seen of other shows isn't that bad either, but just not my cup of tea. Like kanc said, Henry Danger and The Thundermans are pulling in good ratings, so that must mean at least kids like them. Perhaps I don't feel as strongly about this as I might if it was animation since I feel I outgrew the live action, but I honestly think their live action is in better shape than Nicktoons were a few years ago.
 

jaylop97

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#7
For the most part their kidcoms are alright at best, and so-so at worst. I really do like the unique cast in most of the kidcoms right now. Though I do think they should finally go beyond relying on Dan Schneider on their Kidcoms, and of course dial back the pop culture material and obnoxious character moments that they tend to do.
 
Oct 23, 2014
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#8
For the most part their kidcoms are alright at best, and so-so at worst. I really do like the unique cast in most of the kidcoms right now. Though I do think they should finally go beyond relying on Dan Schneider on their Kidcoms, and of course dial back the pop culture material and obnoxious character moments that they tend to do.
My problem is that Nick's current Live action material is just too homogenized. It's the same problem Disney had with their Live-action shows. The Thundermans, Game Shakers, Henry Danger, School of Rock, all feel like they're just the same show just with different settings and premises, and two of those aren't even from Dan Schneider. Compare this to Ned's Declassified, Pete and Pete, Drake and Josh, Eddie McDowd, Alex Mack of the past. They may not have all been winners, but each show at least had a specific style to it. Most of the newer shows all just feel interchangeable. They're not the worst things on TV, they're just lazy and unfunny.

But I will give credit and say, Nick does seem to be stepping out of their comfort zone a little recently. With new shows like Legendary Dudas which has a style that stands out from Nick's other shows, and is a mockumentary style comedy which outside of Naked Brother's Band, Nick hadn't really done before (I can't tell you if the show is good or bad, since I haven't seen a full episode, but it's at least unique). Nickelodeon needs more shows like it. Shows that don't rely on manufactured laugh tracks, cheap sets, themes of fame and popularity, or pop music. Shows that at least attempt some kind of creativity or unique style.

Like, I said, I'd love another show like The Adventures of Pete and Pete to become a success for Nick. That kind of show can definitely work today.
 
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Oct 1, 2009
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#9
Oct 23, 2014
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#10
There's plenty I can say, but for now...



The Legendary Dudas creator Kevin Jakubowski did in fact get some inspiration from Pete and Pete, and had grown up with the show.

Not saying you'll definitely like it as much, but still...
Haven't actually seen Legendary Dudas yet, but from the clips I did see, it definitely has a different feel from Nick's current live action lineup. It certainly does give a feeling of 90s Nick. Too bad it only lasted 6 episodes.
 
Oct 1, 2009
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#11
^ Yeah, I definitely wished Legendary Dudas lasted longer. I liked how "real" the characters and settings looked- not super flashy/glamorous but still interesting, IMO. Not trying to imply it was the only recent Nick show with any of those elements- I just noticed it with this show in particular.

My problem is that Nick's current Live action material is just too homogenized. It's the same problem Disney had with their Live-action shows. The Thundermans, Game Shakers, Henry Danger, School of Rock, all feel like they're just the same show just with different settings and premises, and two of those aren't even from Dan Schneider. Compare this to Ned's Declassified, Pete and Pete, Drake and Josh, Eddie McDowd, Alex Mack of the past. They may not have all been winners, but each show at least had a specific style to it. Most of the newer shows all just feel interchangeable. They're not the worst things on TV, they're just lazy and unfunny.
Though I do believe Nick's gotten way too many shows in the last several years that have been multi-camera sitcoms with a laugh track, I don't really think they feel interchangeable, or that the four current shows you mentioned feel like the same show just with different settings and premises.

For example, I'd expect Henry Danger and Game Shakers to have more mean-spirited and risque humor and (sometimes) rudely-speaking characters than a show like School of Rock. (I mean, I like Henry Danger more than School of Rock, but still...)

But I will give credit and say, Nick does seem to be stepping out of their comfort zone a little recently. With new shows like Legendary Dudas which has a style that stands out from Nick's other shows, and is a mockumentary style comedy which outside of Naked Brother's Band, Nick hadn't really done before (I can't tell you if the show is good or bad, since I haven't seen a full episode, but it's at least unique). Nickelodeon needs more shows like it. Shows that don't rely on manufactured laugh tracks, cheap sets, themes of fame and popularity, or pop music. Shows that at least attempt some kind of creativity or unique style.
I agree, although I don't think having some of those traits you mentioned at the end keep it from being a decent show (if that's what you're implying).

In any case, I feel like between the themes, plots, characters, settings, amount of focus on humor, and camera styles (multi and single), Nick has had plenty of variety between shows like Henry Danger, 100 Things, Legendary Dudas, Bella and the Bulldogs, Make It Pop, and The Other Kingdom (although some of these shows have been cancelled).

Whether one finds them good or not is another story, although I like all these that I listed just now.

Like, I said, I'd love another show like The Adventures of Pete and Pete to become a success for Nick. That kind of show can definitely work today.
From what I've heard and watched of Pete and Pete, I feel that both Legendary Dudas and 100 Things would've fulfilled that wish in the present time if they had continued going. As far is 100 Things (my most favorite Nick live action show since Big Time Rush) is concerned, it was a fun yet somewhat strange show based on realistic themes audiences could relate to. I, too, wish that show had continued.

........... What do kids like/dislike about Nick's recent live action shows? I feel like Nick should greenlight and build shows that they believe will be well remembered years and years after ending.
 
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Oct 23, 2014
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#13
I don't trust Nickelodeon to make live-action again. Their live-action renaissance ended in the late 90s. Nowadays, they just essentially copy the Disney Channel formula of bad kidcoms. They don't even try to do anything unique.
Well to be fair, I think some of their early 2000s stuff was still pretty decent. Ned's Declassified, 100 Deeds for Eddie McDowd, etc.
 

kanc

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#14
I don't see how people are against current "kidcoms". At least something is new and creative probably meant for younger viewers to watch, not for us older viewers.
 

Mikurotoro92

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#15
My problem is that Nick's current Live action material is just too homogenized. It's the same problem Disney had with their Live-action shows. The Thundermans, Game Shakers, Henry Danger, School of Rock, all feel like they're just the same show just with different settings and premises, and two of those aren't even from Dan Schneider. Compare this to Ned's Declassified, Pete and Pete, Drake and Josh, Eddie McDowd, Alex Mack of the past. They may not have all been winners, but each show at least had a specific style to it. Most of the newer shows all just feel interchangeable. They're not the worst things on TV, they're just lazy and unfunny.
like i said nick's sitcoms are worse then disney channel's

But I will give credit and say, Nick does seem to be stepping out of their comfort zone a little recently. With new shows like Legendary Dudas which has a style that stands out from Nick's other shows, and is a mockumentary style comedy which outside of Naked Brother's Band, Nick hadn't really done before (I can't tell you if the show is good or bad, since I haven't seen a full episode, but it's at least unique). Nickelodeon needs more shows like it. Shows that don't rely on manufactured laugh tracks, cheap sets, themes of fame and popularity, or pop music. Shows that at least attempt some kind of creativity or unique style.
at least disney channel is getting out of that phase

besides their tween pop sitcoms like hannah montana are much better then victorious or school of rock!

disney also never teamed up with an actual record label like viacom did with sony music

in other words nick's tween pop sitcoms are worse & even MORE of a cash grab then disney channel's!

it's not like hannah montana was solely created to promote miley or her one-hit wonder dad

if anything it put her dad BACK in the limelight!

or even austin & ally wasn't solely created to promote ross or laura

victorious was solely made to promote victoria's music career

same thing with big time rush

otherwise why would sony music co-produce these shows?

just for fun i am going to count how many of these types of shows both channels have/had:

nick (excluding pre-school):

victorious
school of rock
naked brothers band
big time rush

total:4

disney channel (excluding DCOM's):

hannah montana
austin & ally

total:2

even if we count the short-lived sitcom JONAS, nickelodeon would still have more then disney channel!

most of DC's music-themed stuff is with their DCOM's like high school musical, camp rock, cheetah girls, & lemonade mouth

what i am saying is nick is even MORE dependant on tween pop sitcoms then disney channel

Dan Schneider can't save them forever, and it's time Nick realizes this.
yes viacom not only over-relies on spongebob but also heavily depends on dan schneider

but as bad as their over-reliance on the former is the latter is WORSE because schneider has multiple shows whereas hillenburg only has 1

plus schneider's fans are so selfish & conceited!

i am sick of people saying: "bring drake & josh back!", "WE WANT DRAKE & JOSH RIGHT NOW!" ,"tell dan schneider to revive drake & josh!", etc
 
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#16
If they're rebooting animation there's no reason they couldn't reboot live action. They already brought back Hidden Temple. Why couldn't Clarissa be next? She'd be perfect. Aren't Kenan & Kel supposed to be back in some form? And what if they brought back Afraid of Dark? All three could do well I think. Plus Disney is doing it. Although new original ideas would be preferred.
 

Mostezli

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#17
I was under the impression they were until I just now found out 2 of their 4 next big hits have become shortlived. RIP 100 Things to Do Before High School and Bella and the Bulldogs
Outside of Nicky, Ricky, Dicky, and Dawn + Henry Danger to a lesser extent, I had no idea the current lineup was this obnoxious dumpster fire of kidcom programming. Didn't watch Every Witch Way, but apparently that had a following which likely hasn't reacted well to the cancellation of its sequel series. Like Disney with Stuck in the Middle, they have coincidentally aped an animated series via The Other Kingdom.

just for fun i am going to count how many of these types of shows both channels have/had:

nick (excluding pre-school):

victorious
school of rock
naked brothers band
big time rush

total:4

disney channel (excluding DCOM's):

hannah montana
austin & ally

total:2

even if we count the short-lived sitcom JONAS, nickelodeon would still have more than disney channel!
I honestly wouldn't count School of Rock because they're doing covers, like I wouldn't count Glee, and is also just another in a long line of shows based on movies.
Anyways, Two more to Nick's list: How to Rock & Make It Pop ; Another to Disney's: Shake It Up
Disney is still THE breeding ground for female pop sensations whereas Nick's only major runwaway success came out of left-field from an iCarly spinoff even with all this selling out.

If they're rebooting animation there's no reason they couldn't reboot live action. They already brought back Hidden Temple. Why couldn't Clarissa be next? She'd be perfect. Aren't Kenan & Kel supposed to be back in some form? And what if they brought back Afraid of Dark? All three could do well I think. Plus Disney is doing it.
Disney and Nick must be having some back alley meetings wherein they decide when and with which properties to echo each other.
Nick technically already tried that with 100 Things.
They should stick to original stuff and take it down a notch with the Schneider-like shows.
 

Mikurotoro92

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Jun 17, 2015
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#19
I honestly wouldn't count School of Rock because they're doing covers, like I wouldn't count Glee, and is also just another in a long line of shows based on movies.

Anyways, Two more to Nick's list: How to Rock & Make It Pop ;

Another to Disney's: Shake It Up

Disney is still THE breeding ground for female pop sensations whereas Nick's only major runwaway success came out of left-field from an iCarly spinoff even with all this selling out.
oops i completely forgot about how to rock, make it pop, & shake it up!

so my list would now look like this:

nick:

school of rock
how to rock
make it pop
big time rush
victorious
the naked brothers band

total:6

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


disney channel:

hannah montana
austin & ally
shake it up

total: 3

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even with the addition of shake it up, nick STILL has more than disney channel!

disney may have a higher success rate with turning tween girls into pop-stars but that doesn't change the fact that nick has had more of this show type

it's like in the PS4 game dragon quest heroes: the world tree's woe and the blight below where you would go to the alchemist & he would mix different ingredients together to create accessories for your party members but some of them have a higher chance of "sweet success" then others

disney & nick have both acheived success but disney has a higher chance of acheiving sweet success because they know how to promote their stars

(in the game "sweet success" meant that your accessory got an extra attribute but here it means instant recognizability & long-term popularity which disney has acheived)

nick has only acheived that once

besides ariana i can't think of any other nick star who is instantly recognizable & has had long-term popularity!

disney has had:

miley
selena
demi
sofia
sabrina
hilary
sabrina, adrienne, & kiely (aka the cheetah girls)
the jonas brothers
aly & aj
etc



If they're rebooting animation there's no reason they couldn't reboot live action. They already brought back Hidden Temple. Why couldn't Clarissa be next? She'd be perfect. Aren't Kenan & Kel supposed to be back in some form? And what if they brought back Afraid of Dark? All three could do well I think. Plus Disney is doing it. Although new original ideas would be preferred.
was that in response to what i said about drake & josh?

it wasn't even a good show!

honestly idk what people see in it...
 
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Mostezli

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#20
so my list would now look like this:

nick:

school of rock
how to rock
make it pop
big time rush
victorious
the naked brothers band

total:6

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


disney channel:

hannah montana
austin & ally
shake it up
jonas
total: 4
disney may have a higher success rate with turning tween girls into pop-stars but that doesn't change the fact that nick has had more of this show type.
Wasn't the point I was making. I just now found out The Naked Brothers Band was another movie-tv spinoff.
disney has had:

miley
selena
demi
sofia
sabrina
hilary
sabrina, adrienne, & kiely (aka the cheetah girls)
the jonas brothers
aly & aj
etc
Disney is more like that Gravity Falls boy band parody/satire. It's pretty much expected for at least one of the main cast members of any given show to have or develop a background in singing/dancing.

it's like in the PS4 game dragon quest heroes: the world tree's woe and the blight below where you would go to the alchemist & he would mix different ingredients together to create accessories for your party members but some of them have a higher chance of "sweet success" then others

disney & nick have both achieved success but disney has a higher chance of achieving sweet success because they know how to promote their stars

nick has only achieved that once.
I called Ariana Grande a runaway success because she seemed to have gained her stardom outside of her Nickelodeon career.
besides ariana i can't think of any other nick star who is instantly recognizable & has had long-term popularity!
Drake & Josh. Josh Peck, surprisingly, moreso.
Oh and Miranda Cosgrove.