Contributor Collaborative 4: TVRGO Writers Discuss Favorite Episodes

Welcome to the fourth edition of The TV Ratings Guide's Contributor Collaborative. In this edition, the writers of several TV Ratings Guide Originals (TVRGO) shows discuss their favorite episodes. Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Rebecca, on Marietta and Our House
At the top of the list would probably be the Christmas episodes of both Marietta (Episode 9, "Marietta Christmas, Darling") and Our House (Episode 3, "Our Christmas"). Before writing them, I hadn't written either of the shows in many months and I randomly decided to bring them back as Christmas specials, which reignited my passion for them and gave me the inspiration to continue. I also really enjoy Christmas episodes in general, and writing these allowed me to take part in one of my favorite annual TV traditions.

Another favorite episode of mine, and probably my favorite Marietta episode, is the debate episode, "Going, Going, Gone." It was inspired by the recent Democratic debates and presidential debates in general, which are usually filled with grandstanding and of course, plenty of embarrassing moments. That was, of course, the case in this episode and I think it's one of the funnier episodes I've done of the show. It also gave me a chance to flesh out some smaller characters that didn't get much attention thus far, namely Marietta's opponents in the election and her old Senate colleague, Ellie.

My favorite episodes of Our House would be Our Atlantic City and Our Fleetwood Mac - a two-part story arc that sees some of the lead characters heading to New Jersey for a concert. This episode was loosely inspired by an actual experience that I had, and that connection that I have to the episodes is what makes them my favorite. Even though the family from Our House is based on my real family, almost every situation in it is entirely fictional. Making this the rare episode that is actually inspired by a real event allowed it to have a more personal touch than the other episodes and made it a better episode.

Anonymous Writer, on The Bullpen
My favorite episode of The Bullpen has to be Season 1, Episode 2, titled 'Starter #2'. Readers will remember this episode as the one where Lorenzo runs across the field in the middle of the game to get a certain color of cotton candy. The episode is full of typical antics done by the players in the bullpen, and the incident has been used to help define the character of Lorenzo. It has also lent itself to several callbacks later in the series.

My next-favorite episode of The Bullpen is Season 1, Episode 4, titled 'Starter #4'. Unlike the first three episode, this episode sees the players go off-location. They were trying to figure out places to eat after the game, and since they realized no place they liked was available then, they just left the game to eat dessert while they could. The randomness of the events at the restaurant is one of my favorite incidents of just random things that happen to the players for seemingly no rhyme or reason.

William, on College
My favorite episode of College was episode 14, "Back Where We Started". The season finale of College was one of the hardest to write. It took both me and my writing partner Michael Ledesma to write the episode. We were unsure how it was going to end. Were Andrew and Sarah going to finally get together? What was going to happen to Edison and Brittaney? Michael and I asked ourselves these questions while dining at one of our favorite fast food restaurants. During our meal, we came up with the idea to have an emotional fight fest, causing a rift between the two couples and sending everyone their separate ways. This was what made the episode difficult to write. What would be said and how would it end? This episode was the result of 14 episodes of built up mixed feelings and emotions. Would it be a happy ending? Ultimately, I decided no, because it feels like a more realistic ending and happy endings are too easy. I believe the reason Michael and I enjoyed developing and writing this episode, was because it challenged our characters and sets up season 2 for a clean slate and unpredictable adventures. Michael and I can't wait for our readers to see our next chapter of College in the Fall.

theratingsjunkie, on Finally Together
One of my favorite episodes of Finally Together is episode 6, The Reaction. This is the episode where Josh plans to announce to his family that he's married to Andrew, despite the fact he thought it wouldn't get an unanimously positive reaction. Instead of making the episode too reliant on drama or heart, I took more of a comedic route by having Fran reaction to the news much differently than anyone would expect. The true importance of this episode comes when Josh and Andrew realize that they've grown too far apart from Josh's parents to be able to predict their reactions to things like these, and is really the first step in Josh and Andrew growing closer to Josh's parents.

Another one of my favorite episodes is episode 10, The Goodbye. The way things were progressing, it felt predictable that the entire family was going to grow so close together that they couldn't even think about leaving, and instead all move to the area. I went the other route, and the family actually became more dispersed leaving the reunion than they were coming in, due to Catherine's separation from her husband William. It can be argued that almost everyone's, if not everyone's, life got better due to this reunion, even though it meant everyone going their separate ways again.

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