The TV IV:Proposals/Episode Pages

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Contents

Categorization

We need a way to better categorize the episode pages. We originally set up the episode pages with headers of Plot Overview, Notes, Arc Advancement, Trivia, Quotes, and Reviews in hopes that there'd be some streamlining and uniformity amongst the myriad of episode pages. The purpose of the Notes section was to provide in-depth discussion of the episode. However, because of the Trivia header, a lot of the in-depth discussion is either rendered obsolete, redundant, or misleading. What we need a consensus on is how we're going to divide up episode pages in the future.

Comments

  1. I find the headings in the episode section (as many of them are empty) to be confusing and redundant to the point where I'm not sure how to use them. For example: What kind of information is supposed to go under the heading "Happenings" and how is that different from the heading "Memorable Moments", just a few lines down? Maybe there could be a short description or something with guidelines about what kind of information is needed in each category. Or maybe this confusion will simply work itself out as more people fill in the blanks to give me some example to go on. --Jerrykoch
  1. Categorizing by Tabs? Personally I would like to see a special tab (like the discussion-tab now) linking from a show's main page to the episode lists (season-numbering, air-dates, titles) and from there link to either individual pages for episodes or seasons, which have at least the episode synopsis (as it appears in programming guides) and some cast-info etc.--Skye 05:08, 13 Sep 2005 (EDT)
  2. Being able to see all the episodes from all the seasons listed on one page was key to making the old site usefull for me. It is more difficult place a recorded episode in a season starting with only the title without this feature. --Cpirner 11:20, 13 Sep 2005 (EDT)
  3. An "all episodes" page, readily-accessible by the show's front page, would be nice. Is it possible to merge the seasons page for a show, automatically? --Massa 15:09, 13 Sep 2005 (EDT)
  1. The Show Title/Episodes Category lists every episode, or it should. Perhaps we should add a link to that page to the seasons template. -aenematron 15:29, 13 Sep 2005 (EDT)
  2. I'd like to see links from episode pages to the DVDs that contain that episode (if any). I realize, though, that this can be a bit tricky to keep track of, and the fact that many shows are now being released in both "Complete Season" and "Best Of" sets makes it even trickier, but I think it'd be worth the effort to set up these crosslinks. -Dave Corder 23:42, 14 Sep 2005 (EDT)
  3. Should a numbering convention like 1A, 1B, 1C, etc... be considered for series with multiple episodes per show, like 'The Twillight Zone', 'Love American Style', 'Night Gallery' or 'The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy'? That way the individual episode titles would fit into an episode template and allow linking to a page for that specific episode. --tao 19:21, 16 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Screenshot concensus

  • I've been looking around and there's a lot of different ways people have done screenshots for episode pages. I think that it would be best to keep it uniform. The most noticeable perpetrator is BSG where the screenshots are often too small or too big and rarely the same size as any other. I feel that the screenshots should be unaltered apart from the change in size from the source. Cropping leads to having different sized pictures, and if we just leave all the screenshots the same as they are from the source then it will all look much better. I wish it could be the same for character and actor pages, but it's so hard to get pictures as it is you have to accept some variety in sizes. And just to note if the show is shown in widescreen I think the screenshot should be widescreen and not fullscreen. --Kash 10:01, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
  • I agree that a lot of the screenshots leave me scratching my head, especially ones where half of someone's face is cropped out. I've used full-screen shots, 300x225, though for certain ones I've cropped them but kept the dimensions the same. For sketch shows (except Mr. Show and Wonder Showzen, which I did first), I've used the first sketch as the screenshot to simplify the decision making process, but I've also done screenshots for every sketch for Mr. Show Season One (and plan to do them for every sketch for every show, eventually- the reason being a full explanation of every sketch is lame since it can ruin the comedy and otherwise there's not much to say about an episode of a sketch show). For sitcoms, I try (or will try) to use screenshots that include an image of whatever the episode title refers to. -aenematron 15:17, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Comments

  1. I crop all of my pictures so that they're 300x125 for several reasons. One, it looks more uniform that way and I can't guarantee that the source will be the same exact size. For instance my version of Roswell That Ends Well is different from the rest of my Volume 3 episodes because there's a second commentary track that caused a sacrifice in the overall resolution. Secondly, it cuts out black lines that were included in the DVD or the encode. Thirdly, it removes station identifiers. And, honestly, I think it looks better when you crop a specific area. More often than not, you get a lot of dead space in the screencap. I know Wizardryo appreciates my method. --IndieRockLance 13:34, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
    1. Why is an Episode of Futurama in widescreen format?? It was not written like that, and I don't think the DVD is in widescreen aspect ratio. Cropping out black bars is great, but why was there black bars on this show? because they shouldn't be there at all. --Randall 14:46, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I'm not really sure I see the point in cutting off anything on the top or bottom unless it's black bars or whatever. Cutting any of the actual show from the picture doesn't seem to make a lot of sense. And station identifiers aren't really noticeable at these resolutions. --Kash 14:04, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
That depends on the station. Look at And Fan Boy Is His Name, the station is clearly visible and, I think, cheapens the look of the page. --IndieRockLance 14:42, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Technically we should be using DVDs for screenshots, and that way there is no station ID or rating tag or anything like that. I have to say, i think the shortened screenshots look weird and are confusing. -aenematron 15:19, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I keep doing it that way because Wizardryo keeps saying how much he likes them. I don't see any reason why not to do it in the shortened way. --IndieRockLance 22:35, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
But what about shows that are new? For example Prison Break, apart from one of the screenshots being the last scene in the episode and far too much of a spoiler, the screenshots from that can't come from a DVD. But what's wrong with e tv cap? I'm not sure how the people who are putting the Prison Break pictures up is doing them though. --Kash 19:05, 19 Sep 2005 (EDT)
If someone is looking at an episode page before they've actually seen the episode, then that's their problem. I have a disclaimer on it on the main page, so no one should be visiting them and complaining about a particularly spoilerable screenshot. I really like the way IndieRockLance's does the images because they're all clean and uniform with little to no wasted space. I don't really find them confusing, and I think they're some of the most well-done screencaps on the entire Wiki so far. --Wizardryo 00:27, 20 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I'm not saying they don't look good, I'm just saying that I don't think that any screenshots should have anything removed from them apart from any black bars. I'm talking more about shows without DVDs though. --Kash 07:26, 20 Sep 2005 (EDT)
No offense, IDL, but I just think they look messed up. One man's opinion. I'm not sure I understand "wasted space" since, well, what else is going to go in that space? Plus, it makes the screenshots look crowded/cluttered. The "empty space" is there for a reason. A full screenshot just looks better to me. -aenematron 15:28, 20 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Story Credit

How should we handle story credits for episodes. Currently, there is no space for this in the episode template. I have been adding "Story: NAME" to the writer credit section. There are four options that I can think of:

  1. Add an entry for story credit in the current template.
  2. Make another episode template that has the story credit.
  3. Add it to the writer credit (as I am currently doing).
  4. Leave out the story credit information.


What does everyone think? DCEdwards1966 22:59, 11 Oct 2005 (EDT)

Comments

  1. Most shows don't credit a separate person for the story, so adding an entry to the template or creating an entirely different template would be superfluous or inefficient. Just add the writer in the writer box with something to indicate that it's a story credit. I think I handled this in a Clerks episode with parenthesis. --IndieRockLance 11:08, 30 Oct 2005 (EST)

Guest lists

At the moment the guest lists at the top of each episode are incredibly difficult to read: they're too small, and there's minimal formatting. I would prefer to see a separate section, in similar fashion to the cast list on the show's main page, showing the cast for each episode. Maybe even which regular characters appear in a particular episode could also be shown. HTH HAND —Phil | Talk 11:48, 9 Dec 2005 (EST)

We've been using Veronica Mars episode pages as a way to test out different formatting for the guest lists. Every episode seems to have a slightly different formatting, but here is a good example. The problem with increasing their size is that they'd take up way too much space, especially for shows with a ton of guest stars, Law & Order and ER being two notable examples as they always have a huge rotation of guests every episode. --Wizardryo| 06:15, 10 Dec 2005 (EST)
How about an extra section on the bottom of the episode template? —Phil | Talk 10:25, 14 Dec 2005 (EST)

I was wondering whether each episode actually ought to have a proper Cast section, since not every main or recurring character is in every episode: there ought to be some way of recording that. HTH HAND Phil | Talk 04:58, 16 Dec 2005 (EST)

You can start implementing that in any episode pages you decide to edit. I agree. --Wizardryo\talk 16:38, 27 March 2006 (EST)
Yeah? Well I tried that and it was reverted as "way, way too cluttered". So what's more cluttered? A nice clean table or a squiddly little list you have to squint to read? Let me know whether there's any point trying any more of this…HTH HAND —Phil | Talk 16:32, 29 March 2006 (EST)
I don't know if you have bad eyesight or what, but I've never had to squint to read the guest cast lists. They're very neat, and confined to a decent amount of space. On the other hand, that huge front-page style cast list added a load of unnecessary clutter to the page what with taking up more space than the actual episode information. --Hawkman | talk 19:22, 29 March 2006 (EST)
I'm not sure what's the best way to handle absentees—for Veronica Mars they're listed as "gone fishing" in the trivia section, which seems reasonable if they still receive billing—but I agree with Hawkman that the legibility of the current solution is just fine and your table adds too much clutter. —Naddy 19:49, 29 March 2006 (EST)
I think that a cast table takes up a lot of vertical space that doesn't seem to be extremely crucial to the functioning of an episode article. Also, Naddy, I think that a nice compromise would be to just include the Billed Cast in the header of the episode articles as well. I started off putting them in the Trivia section, but, looking at it, if an episode page is particularly full, it seems a bit useless to read the Trivia section to see who wasn't in a particular episode. --Wizardryo\talk 02:34, 30 March 2006 (EST)
How about a Cast section like in this mock up image I made for a Nash Bridges episode. [Image] (Twayney 16:11, 27 June 2008 (EDT))
This discussion is a little out of date we have since come up with a standard way of doing cast lists that is basically copying the show's credits exactly including any "special", "and", "with" or "as". Like these episodes: Buffy the Vampire Slayer/The Harvest (2) and Veronica Mars/Hi, Infidelity. --The-jam 16:44, 27 June 2008 (EDT)

This is probably a naïve question, but how do we get the definite character names for guest stars in American shows? Sometimes they aren't even mentioned in the show itself, and if they are the spelling remains elusive. In current British shows the complete cast is conveniently listed in the end credits, but I'm at a loss how to figure this out for American productions given only the information in the episode itself. I have noticed that competing sources, such as IMDb, also suffer from notoriously incomplete guest star information, but then I don't know their editing process. —Naddy 16:10, 27 March 2006 (EST)

Unfortunately, IMDb usually is the source to draw most of it from. I don't know of many other substantial resources but, depending on the show, you can search around on fansites or media related to that show. --Wizardryo\talk 16:38, 27 March 2006 (EST)
The Futon Critic is another source. Here is a listing for an upcoming episode of Bones [1]. It is as accurate as the info provided by the networks. DCEbot 17:17, 27 March 2006 (EST)

Section Headings

  1. I find the headings in the episode section (as many of them are empty) to be confusing and redundant to the point where I'm not sure how to use them. For example: What kind of information is supposed to go under the heading "Happenings" and how is that different from the heading "Memorable Moments", just a few lines down? Maybe there could be a short description or something with guidelines about what kind of information is needed in each category. Or maybe this confusion will simply work itself out as more people fill in the blanks to give me some example to go on. --Jerrykoch
    1. Happenings is a sub-section of Arc Advancement and is supposed to be for specific plot happenings that advance the show's ongoing story-arcs. Just as the characters section is for character arcs. Memorable Moments is for any extra special events or scenes regardless of how they advance arcs. A general plot description should go under Plot Overview not in the notes section as you've been doing. Notes is for specific notes about specific things involving the episode. Like listing any occurances of repeating gags or gimicks the show has. Check out the Lost episode pages for a good example of what each section should be used for. --The-jam 11:12, 5 January 2009 (EST)