Fall shows need to do everything they can to avoid getting canceled — a fate that awaits approximately 65 percent of shows. And apparently, making up quotes from reviewers and (perhaps worse) taking them off of Facebook pages is fair game.
On Monday night, Fox's Gotham (a pretty good show) showed a preview of an upcoming episode along with a blurb from pop culture site The A.V. Club saying how much the publication loved the show. Unfortunately, no one at The A.V. Club actually wrote that, as Oliver Sava, The A.V. Club's resident comics critic, who also writes episodic reviews of Gotham observed:
In fact, Sava awarded the show's pilot episode a C, its second and third C-minuses, and its fourth another C. With some digital sleuthing, one of Sava's Twitter pals found the only time "loved it" and Gotham, intersected on the internet in an A.V. Club-related capacity. It was in a comment on a Facebook share on The A.V. Club's homepage, where a fan said that he "loved it":
Another theory appears to be that Fox may have pulled the quote from a podcast called Mom on Pop, where A.V. Club writer John Teti's mom weighs in on pop culture and television shows:
Teti's mother says she "loved it" around the 33:55 mark.
Perhaps it speaks to The A.V. Club's prestige that Gotham really wants people to think that The A.V. Club "loves" Gotham. But it's a bit dishonest and well, bonkers to quote either a Facebook comment or an offhanded remark in a podcast made by a writer's mother.
Usually, you see some kind of tomfoolery when it comes to movie and television show pull quotes, and it's common knowledge that companies, studios, and networks will pick and choose the best parts of a review (see: Gone Girl promoting itself as a "date movie").
But Sava didn't even write the "loved it" comment, nor did any regular writer at The A.V. Club. It makes you wonder what kind of rules (if any) Gotham is playing by. If shows are going to use words that were never written, or (even worse) words from a Facebook post, what's stopping them from fully inventing a review and attaching it to a publication?*
*If Mysteries of Laura ever says I "loved it," alert the proper authorities.