Infographic reveals when your favourite TV show really dropped off

Did the Simpsons predict the Chinese spy balloon would be shot down?

Nothing lasts forever, and even the best shows ever made have dropped off in quality over time.

Take The Simpsons. For its first eight seasons, many would argue nothing could come close to its ingenuity and creativity in the world of TV comedy. But as the series limped on over the years, the quality has dropped off to the point where even ardent fans of those early seasons wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole in 2023.

It’s not an uncommon story, and now someone has created a brilliant infographic which pinpoints the exact moments that some of the most popular shows ever made dropped off in quality.

The graphic was originally posted in the Reddit thread dataisbeautiful by user gammafission00 and was reposted on Twitter by user Trung Phan.

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It tracks average IMDB ratings for different shows from the late 1980s to the early 2020s, with the higher ratings in blue and the lower ratings in red.

The biggest, and most obvious talking point - as pointed out by Phan - is the drop off fans saw in Game of Thrones. While the HBO fantasy series enjoyed incredibly high scores in its first seven seasons, many felt the eighth brought a rushed end to the show and suffered without George R.R Martin’s source material to base it on.

The Simpsons showed the most obvious continuous drop off in ratings after a drop in 1999 with season 10, while Seinfeld was one of the few to actually improve over time after middling ratings in its first two seasons.

The Big Bang Theory received its worst ratings in its first season before improving, while much-loved sitcom Friends was the only show to record its best rating in its final season.

Other shows include Grey’s Anatomy which enjoyed a pretty consistent run in the ratings despite a drop off in the last three seasons, as well as It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia which had a season rating of more than 7.5 throughout its run.

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