Any TV show can be made better by removing an annoying/useless character or two (or, in the case of Fox’s Terra Nova, all of ’em but the dinosaurs). The following freshman series should 86 some dead weight before they become too entrenched:
Character to lose: Detective Nick Burkhardt (David Giuntoli). Sure, he’s the star of Grimm, a descendent of the monster-huntin’ Grimms charged with protecting humanity (well, Portland) from supernatural storybook threats. But he has all the personality of a de-boned carp and the haircut of a Barnes & Noble clerk who’s only begrudgingly working there “until his band takes off”—or, shorter, an even-less-interesting Brandon Routh. There must be more charismatic relatives of the Brothers Grimm out there; since she already has an in with the producer, just write off Giuntoli and bring in ex-Buffy/Angel badass Eliza Dushku to kill those literature critters as Cousin Faith.
Character to lose: Jessica Brody (Morena Baccarin). The Only TV Column That Matters™ was as thrilled as anyone that former Firefly and V star Baccarin delivered some excellent Showtime-requisite nude scenes in the early episodes of tense terrorism-plot drama Homeland, but clothed? She’s the show’s dullest buzzkill—and this is a cast that includes Mandy Patinkin! Baccarin brings nothing but blank doe eyes to what could have been a juicy role as the cheating wife of a returned U.S. soldier who may or may not be a brainwashed al-Qaeda terrorist (Damian Lewis). Script Jessica to run off with her boyfriend and replace her with Firefly’s Summer Glau.
2 Broke Girls
Characters to lose: Han (Matthew Moy), Oleg (Jonathan Kite) and Earl (Garrett Morris). Even though the writing has slipped a little since its debut (Is someone gunning for a vagina-joke world record? And what does that trophy look like?), titular 2 Broke Girls Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs are still TV’s best new comedy team—too bad the rest of the cast can’t keep pace. OK, maybe the horse has game. It might seem racist to say, “Have the Asian guy, the Ukranian guy and the black guy die in a hail of gunfire during a botched diner robbery,” but I only want what’s best for the show—it’s not my fault they’re the only minorities on CBS.
The CW, Tuesdays
Character to lose: Bridget/Siobhan (Sarah Michelle Gellar). This might be even more of a stretch than dumping faux-Routh from Grimm: The entire premise of Ringer is built around the drama and intrigue of identical twin sisters Bridget and Siobhan. But, Gellar is neither dramatic nor intriguing—it could be argued that she’s not even breathing. On a network built on Over! Acting!, she’s phoning in a performance from Lifetime—scratch that, Lifetime Movie Network—that can’t even approach the intensity of Elizabeth Hurley’s upper lip on Gossip Girl. Focus Ringer on the druggie daughter (Zoey Deutch), and it’ll fall right in line with the rest of The CW.
Character to lose: Declan Porter (Connor Paolo). Not so much the character as the name. Best to just stop this “Declan” trend before it gets out of hand.
American Horror Story
Character to lose: Chad (Zachary Quinto). As part of American Horror Story’s rapidly expanding/revolving cast of transient ghosts, Quinto’s probably not going to be around much longer, anyway—but the sooner he’s gone, the better. Not because he’s bad; quite the opposite: He plays over-the-top-of-the-top gay so well, he’s stealing scenes in an already over-the-top-of-the-top series—is it any wonder he came out right before his distractingly psycho-bitchy guest arc? There would be no denying it after AHS—you’re not that good of an actor, Spock.