Summary of “Five Reasons Why 2018 Has Been the Year of the TV Sophomore Slump – Rolling Stone”

The Handmaid’s Tale, Luke Cage, Westworld, Legion, 13 Reasons Why, Jessica Jones and Sneaky Pete were among the second-year shows to disappoint, frustrate and/or inspire reevaluations of their acclaimed debut seasons.
There are a lot of different reasons for how and why the first group of shows went awry.
If there’s a Grand Unified Field Theory to the phenomenon, it’s this: Like second novels and albums, sophomore seasons of TV dramas have an awfully hard time living up to the original, while comedies are much more immune to this.
TV shows don’t always work that way, but at minimum, there’s often a sense in freshman-show writers’ rooms to put the most vital and resonant material into that first year to make as big an initial splash as possible.
13 Reasons Why embarrassingly contorted itself this way and that to re-solve a mystery its first season had exhaustively solved, simply because the show was apparently too popular to cancel.
On top of that, one way TV execs are trying to break though the cluttered programming environment is with flashy, high-concept work that can more easily get attention rather than “Here’s a really well-executed variation on a thing you’ve seen three dozen times already.” Together, this means that a lot of shows are in the hands of screenwriters, playwrights, novelists, etc.
TV isn’t “Movies, but longer” – and a lot of shows are in the hands of people who never learned that.
Sophomore slumps are so frequent throughout TV history, you could probably find 1960s TV criticism along the lines of, “Ugh, again with the twists, Rod Serling?” Truly great shows manage to come back strong the year after and the ones that don’t make it clear pretty quickly that it’s all downhill from here.

The orginal article.