Heaven knows there are a lot worse shows on TV (I'm [not] looking at you, Real Housewives) than the five I'm naming here. These, however, have the misfortune of being the shows I actually watched with some regularity, if only to confirm that my instincts about their terribleness were correct.
5. Bad Judge (NBC)
Sometimes a performer tries to go all out, taking risks at going over-the-top in the service of achieving wild comedy. Credit Kate Walsh with bravery, but here the writing failed her miserably.
4. Scorpion (CBS)
How unfortunate that this reasonably entertaining premise — a group of young computer geniuses have adventures fighting global crime — went through the CBS Hour-Long Programming Mixmaster, turning Scorpion into a tedious combination of NCIS/CSI-style procedural and the static dialogue-heavy action of a show such as The Unit. All this, plus the minus of Katharine McPhee. Want nerd adventure? Watch HBO's Silicon Valley instead.
3. Mixology (ABC)
Trapped in a bar with five men and five women, few of them appealing, and all the action (such as it is) occurs over the space of one night in a bar. Such was the gimmick of this mirthless sitcom. Its network didn't help matters, either, since every week during its existence, Mixology's punchiest punchlines (and there weren't many of them) were repeated on an endless loop of promos during other ABC shows — you felt as though you hadn't laughed even before the episode aired.
Related: Ken Tucker's 10 Best TV Shows of 2014
2. Family Guy's "The Simpsons Guy" crossover episode (Fox)
Everything you needed to remind you why Seth MacFarlane's vision of the world is so much smaller, grimier, and pettier than Matt Groening's. The episode did a thorough job of proving the various ways in which Family Guy is a shallow, attention-deficit-disordered rip-off of the Simpsons universe, and in the process lowered the standards of both franchises.
1. Stalker (CBS)
A real achievement of its kind: This Kevin Williamson creation is repellent in its portrayal of violence against (mostly) women, featuring a notably wooden performance by Dylan McDermott. Indeed, it sometimes seems as though he and co-star Maggie Q are clenched, holding themselves back — perhaps hoping if they expend the least amount of effort, the nightmare will grind to a halt.
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