dollsome is apparently the judge in this game, because she gave me ALL THE SHOWS so now I don't have to come up with my own. Some of these I know better than others, but as I have not really watched any of them, I decided they were mostly fair game. Which means that some of them will be funnier (read: some are boring) than others. I did leave off GIlmore Girls, Dollhouse and Legend of the Seeker because turns out I know them pretty well and they were extra-boring summaries once I started writing them out.
[True Blood]True Blood: Sookie Stackhouse, as played by Anna Paquin, is a human...or did she become a vampire at some point?...in a constant love triangle with vampires Bill (who got there first) and Eric, whom I'm guessing is the opposite of Bill in every way from appearance to ideology. Takes place in New Orleans or at least somewhere in the South. Vampires war and kill/maim each other a lot for reasons I don't understand, but Pam is the HBIC of vampires. And Lafayette has the best name and flair out of everyone.
[Don't Trust the B In Apartment 23]Don't Trust The B in Apt. 23
Nice, unsuspecting chick moves in with Satan's actual daughter (who is friends with James Van Der Beek, Playing Himself) because she's desperate to find a place to live and then has nowhere to go after she finds out she's living with evil. Eventually they become sort of casual "yeah, I got nothin' better to do" hang-out friends, and/or the nice chick just becomes desensitized to the constant verbal abuse in a situation that would inspire anti-bullying laws if they were under 18. That, or she stays because she just doesn't want to give up access to James Van Der Meme. I mean, I wouldn't.
[Warehouse 13]Warehouse 13: A team investigates the contents of the title location, which consists of either magic or supernatural artifacts (historical and/or literary in nature - I want to say there was something about an item from a book?), to determine where they are from and what they do. Also there is some sort of flack because they won't give their bisexual character, whoever that is (female?), a same-sex love interest. Does not seem like a very shippy show, though.
Doctor Who, The Moffat Years
[A+ work differentiating this as a new show.]
The companions are engaged/marrieds Amy & Rory. River Song is repeatedly confirmed to be the Doctor's full blown legitimate love interest, which gets kind of awkward when we eventually find out she's also Amy's daughter (WIBBLY WOBBLY TIMEY WIMEY; also aliens). Amy herself was some kind of carbon copy for most of season 6 while the real version was apparently trapped in another dimension/planet/part of space/etc. If you are a sensitive feminist, do not watch past season 5 or you will be consumed by the fires of rage at how poorly the women are written/treated.
The part I don't know is when the new companion, Clara, comes in at the end of season 7. She seems pretty cool, but people say that "her only purpose was to save the doctor." Not sure if they mean metaphorically or if she's actually some sort of non-human being who just shows up in timelines to save his life.
Jess, a walking pile of secondhand embarrassment with no shame gland, moves in with three guys who probably forgot to specify gender in their ad, but accept her because she's a hot chick. The guys in question are Nick Miller, who is nice but also a gooberish not-very-smart manchild, Winston,
who seems remarkably intelligent (and also sings along to Wicked soundtrack), and Schmidt, a classic casual dater/dumb jock who is now in a relationship with a woman named Cece, who was expected to blow in and out, but who instead has put down roots.
Jess is your classic case of a perpetual 13-year-old (in the sense of keeping a child-like perspective on the world, where it would not be unrealistic if she made out of college without having ever dated anyone because it just wouldn't be an assumed part of life). Doesn't have much luck with relationships until she inexplicably falls in love with Nick.
The Benedict Cumberbatch version of Sherlock behaves like a socially stunted weirdo - I imagine he walks out of rooms/away from conversations without parting comments, or maybe touches stuff without permision and moves it around without seeing anything wrong with that - but less abrasively than the Elementary version. Watson - assigned partner, or assistant? - is always running after him and trying to pick up his messes while facepalming about why he has to babysit a grown man (who is unfortunately good at detective work, and so earns his keep).
------[Once Upon a Time]
Once Upon A Time
Precocious 10-year-old Henry shows up at Emma Swann's door all "HEY THERE, I'm your kid you gave up for adoption, but more importantly the town I live in is under enchantment and all the inhabitants are actually fairy tale characters who just don't remember their real selves." The show switches between the real world and the storybook one (not sure how - flashbacks?), but I think it's still a quest to return all the storybook characters back to the fantasy world. It includes every character from every fairy tale, Disney movie and/or myth possible. The strangest part is that Belle is in a relationship with Rumpelstiltsken, a.k.a. A Gremlin, and I am really looking forward to understanding why in god's name they showed up on shipper polls. POLLS WHERE PEOPLE VOTE FOR THEM AS BEING BETTER THAN OTHER COUPLES.
OK, so I'm 90% clear on the premise of this show, but I really just want to express my bewilderment with Belle's storyline. WHAT IS HAPPENING THERE?
[Buffy the Vampire Slayer]Buffy The Vampire Slayer
Buffy is a high schooler, at least at first, who somehow finds out she can and/or is destined to protect the world from vampires. Famous for having a lesbian couple (Willow/Tara), although that ended badly. Buffy lost her virginity to Angel and they were everything that is sweet and wonderful in the world until he either became crazy or evil. Good-hearted people like me who love sweetness and puppy love ship it. Spike was her nemesis and they eventually had some kind of hate!sex thing going on. Nutty people who like ships where people antagonize each other until they kiss it out ship it, yet somehow it is the dominant OTP. "Once More With Feeling" was their musical episode and it was the most famous musical episode in all the land. Also, Anthony Head plays Giles, who is sort of her mentor? I can't tell if he's the principal or a teacher or her grandfather or just some nice old dude who likes books and libraries and maybe knows about vampires so she can confide in him.
I have literally no idea what made this series different from Buffy, other than that it focuses on a different title character so maybe it has different bad guys. Angel's a vampire, though, right? Like a good one, who protects people from bad vampires? And is this the series where Cordelia and/or Fred and/or Wesley is featured? (Just realized I don't even know what they look like, except I think Fred is a girl.)
crackers4jenn had some good ones, too:
The tragedy is like 3 days ago, I read one of those PowerPoint "here's what you need to know about ___" posts, so that took all the fun out of this one. But prior to that cheat sheet, my impressions were as follows: "Hannibal the Cannibal is a sociopath of a serial killer, which should be obvious to anyone looking at him since he is always smiling evilly. He serves disguised soylent green to dinner guests. The show is extremely gory, so much so that it is unclear how network TV allowed it instead of sending it to cable. Hugh Dancy is somehow mixed up in this mess; Hannibal has not eaten him yet but wants to? I think it's a procedural so maybe the focus is on him trying to investigate the deaths and/or disappearances of all the people Hannibal has done away with. Also Hannibal is a single dad with a daughter and he doesn't hurt her, but it smells like a child molestation story is happening."
[extra impressions based on cheat sheet]Pertinent new info I have learned but which still leaves me with questions includes: Hugh Dancy is an FBI profiler who catches serial killers but does not notice how his best friend is one, Hannibal apparently only kills evil people (I'm guessing he watched too much Dexter and then was like, "I could make this so much more hardcore"), and his daughter is adopted from one of his victims (I have NO IDEA how he knew her father/how he got custody unless she's over 18, but she looks 16 to me). A spectral elk follows Hugh Dancy around (his psyche is pretty fragile). Laurence Fishburne is also on the show; I think he works at the FBI too and/or is Dancy's boss? The most important thing that Tumblr failed to tell me about is ALL OF HUGH DANCY'S DOGS. It also failed to tell me his character's name, come to think of it.
----[Supernatural]Supernatural: Two brothers hunt down demons and paranormal beasties (mostly the former, as they go to Hell and deal with the devil a lot) - carrying on their father's work? The Impala is a pretty central character for a car; I think they travel cross-country in search of the beasties when not in Hell. They are constantly saving each other's lives and get hurt a lot, but Dean in particular has an insane savior complex where his little brother is concerned. It was a fun show at first, and then the mythology began to weigh it down. Fortunately, this is when Castiel-the-Angel (fallen angel?) showed up and everyone in the universe loved him, except a few extra-bitter Wincest shippers. Prone to being confused by humans and taking things way too seriously; Dean enjoys mocking him about it. Something awful happened to Castiel at some point re: becoming evil and/or crazy. But seriously, the overwhelming theme of this show is taking the phrase "go to hell" way too literally.
p.s. all the women die, don't get attached
BONUS: pretty sure this fandom gave birth to the insane tinhat RP shipper phenomenon
[Teen Wolf]Teen Wolf: the two main characters are Derek and Stiles. At least one of them is a werewolf. They have to fight evil from time to time (not sure what kind of evil) while navigating high school as awkward teen boys. Fandom thinks they are gay, but they are not, just best friends.
p.s. I'm pretty sure this show is the reason the meme was created, because based on other peoples' answers, fandom watches a completely different show than the one in the script and then misinforms EVERYONE.