Television Without Pity

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.


A currently-defunct TV recapping/discussion site, formerly known as Mighty Big TV, featuring very snarky commentary. Plans were being made to bring it back in 2017, but this was scrapped among other cost-cutting measures at owner Tribune Media in April 2017.

If you believe some TV shows are so good that they must never be made fun of, TWoP is not for you. However, if you recognize that even your favorite show has much which is deserving of mockery, you'll like TWoP.

The site's forums were notable for requiring posters to conform to standard written English. All-caps, no-caps, or textspeak would get a poster warned or banned. Flames and "talking about the boards on the boards" were prohibited, and that was just the tip of the iceberg.

On March 27, 2014, it was announced that operations would cease on April 4, 2014, with forums remaining open until May 31, 2014. It was later confirmed, however, that the site's already published content would remain available as an archive. The forums closed as scheduled. However, only the first pages of recaps was eventually available, with other pages no longer redirecting properly.

The full archive of recaps was transferred to As of December 2016, visiting any page within the domain results in receiving a message featuring the site's mascot Tubeelzebub, stating "Welcome back, you devil," an apparent reference to the site's aborted return in 2017.

In 2016, the site was updated by new owner, Tribune Media. As of October 2016, a teaser with the tagline "Something wicked this way comes... returning in 2017" appeared on Tribune's site Screener. The site's "About" page claimed "And, in 2017, Screener will proudly welcome the revival of Television Without Pity, with an unexpected twist." However, the reboot was canceled, and all that exists of the site today is the "welcome back" image, to which virtually every menu item on the site returns.

Television Without Pity provides examples of the following tropes:
  • Accentuate the Negative: The entire purpose of the site is to review and discuss TV shows in as snarky a fashion as possible, so naturally this is going to result in a fair bit of focussing on the bad bits over the good bits. Depending on the reviewer and the show, however, this can sometimes tip into outright negativity, often with no readily apparent justification.
  • All Crimes Are Equal: Their penchant for fashion policing. A few of the recappers obsessively note instances of actors wearing (in their view) tacky costumes, regardless of whether the character in question is intended to have bad fashion sense.
  • Author Filibuster: Often. One review even stopped to proclaim George W. Bush "Not my President!" in the midst of a show that had absolutely nothing to do with politics.
  • Caustic Critic: The recappers.
  • Fauxlosophic Narration: Jacob, whose 30-page recaps can go on for pages and pages about philosophy and symbolism and literature without once mentioning the actual show he is recapping.
  • Fauxtivational Poster: they have a thread for these on their recreational forum which must be one of the prime places to find it on the 'Net
  • Grammar Nazi: The moderators.
    • The recappers once suffered from this. Unavoidable when your webmaster and her friends are all ivy-league English majors.
  • I Reject Your Reality: Lampshaded in the Buffy/Angel reviews. Strega chooses to believe Spike is off causing mayhem in some foreign nation, unaware that he's replaced by some dull lookalike named Brad.
    • In one Charmed recap, Demian refers to Chris's female sex partner as a man because he insists that Chris is gay.
  • In-Joke / Memetic Mutation: numerous
    • Many of these were apparently mandated and enforced by the site's editors. One reviewer admitted as such that their TWoP editor had been harassing them to come up with more Catch Phrase-like "in-jokes" to use during their reviews of a new show, and were thus going to start using the first one that had come to mind as much as possible.
  • Hypocrite: A major problem with any of the viewers that liked to sprinkle their reviews with their own opinions. For example, the Enterprise reviewer was constantly lambasting the creative team of the show for being sexist and shallow... while consistently referring to T'Pol's breasts as "dinners" and apparently refusing to pay attention to the dialog any time she was on screen in favor of complaining about said "dinners". Could have possibly been an attempt at Hypocritical Humor, but came off as so heavy-handed that it didn't work if so.
  • Inherently Funny Words: Flounce.
  • The Man Is Sticking It to the Man: How do they manage to remain ruthless when they are owned by Bravo and, since the takeover, choose to spork mostly NBC Universal-produced properties?
  • Portmanteau: "Porquettishly"
    • The site's mascot, "Tubeelzebub" (shortened to Tubey).
  • Precision F-Strike: Strega usually avoids gratuitous swearing, but she loathed Fred and extreme sappiness. Both of those things were exemplified by "Mr. Feigenbaum," Fred's stuffed bunny, which Strega thought was designed purely to make her extra cute and sympathetic. Paraphrased slightly:

"I really hate that fucking rabbit."

  • Real Life Writes the Plot: TWoP's forum is legendary for causing Aaron Sorkin to rip his hair out and base an entire episode around eviscerating the site and their perceived ill-treatment of him.
  • Running Gag: The majestic TWoP Tower offices!
  • Shout-Out: Played for Laughs. Any line of dialogue which includes a name or reference to something the recapper is known for (no matter how obscure) is jokingly (or, as time went on, "jokingly") declared a "Shout out."
    • Demian has at least two from Charmed- in one episode, Piper said 'Fricking ever-useless Elders!' ('ever-useless Elders' was one of his catch phrases when recapping) and in another, the entire episode revolved around a Darklighter named Damien who was trying to kill Leo (Demian's least favourite character). He was overjoyed.
    • Supernatural featured a gay couple named Demian and Barnes.
    • Keckler's recaps of Star Trek: Enterprise dubbed Captain Archer's ready room porthole the "Weight Of The World Window" for his habit of staring contemplatively through it in times of momentous or weighty decisions. Somewhere late in the series, Archer turned away from it to Commander Tucker and said "Weight of the world, Trip," leaving Keckler briefly stunned in mid-recap.
    • Midway through the fourth and final season of the 2000s-era Battlestar Galactica, one of the members of the colonial Quorum of Twelve was named Jacob (same as the recapper). To the possible delight of those who disliked the real Jacob's metaphorical ramblings in his Doorstopper-sized recaps, the fictional Jacob was eventually shot to death during an attempted coup d'etat.
  • Spork: The recappers' supposed weapon of choice.
  • Suckiness Is Painful: Sars resigning from the Dawson's Creek recaps in its final season, pleading concern for her stomach lining.
    • Sara M resigning from doing House recaps.
    • In a recap much shorter than his usual (which admittedly isn't saying much), recapper Jacob Clifton dumped reviewing Doctor Who midway through Series 6, because he preferred Russell T Davies' mythic arcs to Moffat's interlocking puzzle plots, and objected to the characterization of Eleven and Amy.
  • The Unfavorite: They will cheerfully and unashamedly play favorites.