Summer 2005 Critics Poll: Critics Weigh In on Best and Worst Sweeps Stunts

Jul 11, 2005  •  Post A Comment

CBS’s “Everybody Loves Raymond” finale? Good. CBS airing Rob and Amber’s wedding? Bad.

Respondents to TelevisionWeek‘s semiannual critics poll were asked to name the best and worst sweeps stunts, and the results were clear: Most season finales delivered, but the specials weren’t so special.

The half-hour finale of “Everybody Loves Raymond,” which was seen by 32 million viewers, received the most praise. Critics said the finale ended the series on a perfect note and resisted going overboard with a bloated sendoff.

“The ‘Raymond’ finale was handled beautifully,” wrote Chuck Barney of the Contra Costa (Calif.) Times. “In sports, they talk about trying not to press and do too much, to stay within yourself, and that’s exactly what they did.”

Alan Pergament of The Buffalo (N.Y.) News agreed: “The script found a way to get a little sentimental that wasn’t inconsistent with nine years of terrific family bickering.”

Finales for “Lost,” “Alias” and “Desperate Housewives” also received high marks, but some writers took shots at the much-derided finale for “Star Trek: Enterprise,” in which guest appearances by cast members from a previous “Star Trek” series took center stage.

“The ‘Enterprise’ finale was a slap in the face to the cast, the fans, the franchise, the genre,” wrote Rob Salem of The Toronto Star.

ABC News’ “Fallen Idol” expose, in which former “American Idol” contestant Corey Clark told “primetime>live” that he slept with Paula Abdul, received a universal thumbs down.

“Whether [Mr. Clark] was telling the truth doesn’t matter. ABC shouldn’t have presented this under the guise of news,” wrote Robert Philpot, critic for the Fort Worth (Texas) Star-Telegram.

But the sharpest barbs were reserved for “Rob and Amber’s Wedding,” in which the former “Survivor” and “Amazing Race” contestants tied the knot in prime time.

“Let’s stick a fork in these two glory hogs and have a nice ‘Survivor’-style luau,” wrote John Crook of Tribune Media Services.

Added The (Syracuse, N.Y) Post-Standard’s William LaRue: “I stopped caring about them two reality shows ago.”