The CW has amended the titles of a couple of its shows for next season. That in and of itself is not a big deal — new shows sometimes go through name changes between getting picked up and going on the air.
It’s how the titles were changed that is the reason for this post. As first pointed out by Joe Adalian at TV Week, The C-dub has monkeyed with the titles of The Beautiful Life and the show formerly known as Parental Discretion Advised in grammar- and spell-check-defying ways that, in print at least, look downright silly.
Parental Discretion Advised, a midseason show about a teenage girl (Britt Robertson) who tracks down her biological parents (Shiri Appleby and Kristoffer Polaha), has changed its name to Life UneXpected, Adalian reports (though the network web site still has the old title). And no, I didn’t accidentally hit the caps lock when I typed the X. The extraneous capital letter does highlight the name of Robertson’s character, Lux, but it also looks like a typo. (So, for that matter, does the official spelling of TNT’s new show HawthoRNe, which is about a nurse.)
Then there’s The Beautiful Life — or, as The CW has now christened it The Beautiful Life: TBL. Maybe the network is anticipating fans using the shorthand, but the appendage is otherwise completely unnecessary and, in fact, a little bit confusing. Does that mean the full, unabridged title of the show is The Beautiful Life: The Beautiful Life? Is it a life so nice they named it twice? Is it destined to be known in snarky online communities as Tibble?
(The CW’s own site even seems flummoxed. The show’s landing page has the TBL after the full title, but if you scroll down in the series description, the show is called TBL: The Beautiful Life in one spot.)
The network’s other two shows, Melrose Place and The Vampire Diaries, have thus far managed to keep their original and conventional titles. The CW should be extra-careful about the second one — no one would want to watch a show called The VD.