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The end of the traditional television season marks the time for us fans, if you’re like me anyway, to start pulling our hair out over the cliffhangers that our favorite shows have left dangling for the next four months. But before you end up rocking in a corner, mumbling about the fate of your favorite characters or ships, consider these ways to beat the heat, so to speak.

5. Rewatch your favorite shows

The season is over; some questions have been answered while others have inevitably been brought up. Could there be clues that you missed on first watch? Over summer hiatuses, I like to rewatch some of my favorites from the beginning to see how things have built up, look for clues, and hopefully find things I missed during the original run. It’s amazing what you can notice in season 1 of a show that’s three seasons in that you hadn’t considered relevant the first time around. This summer I’m planning to rewatch The Vampire Diaries since the show moves incredibly fast and now that we’re at end of season 3, I’ve already forgotten a good chunk of what happened during season 1. Tomb vampires? What?

4. Check out some sizzling summer shows

Who says the TV season has to be over with the summer? Just because the networks are showing sports, reality shows, and reruns doesn’t mean the delicious drama (or thigh-slapping comedy) has to end. Cable networks really get their TV schedules going into high gear during the summer. This is the perfect time to try out some new shows to fill the void in your heart left by the end of the traditional schedule. Some of my favorite shows air in the summer: White Collar and Suits on USA and my guilty pleasure, Pretty Little Liars, on ABCFamily all start new seasons this summer. And don’t forget True Blood on HBO once Game of Thrones ends.

3. Catch up on shows you’ve been meaning to check out

Last summer I made a list of all the ongoing shows I wanted to check out and binged. I was then able to follow them weekly in the fall. With only a few shows on my summer docket, I have the time to really check out those shows I’ve heard good things about but haven’t had the time to check out.

This is a great time to take recommendations from friends—or give them. I’m a huge evangelist for my favorite show, Supernatural, but a number of my friends who would otherwise be interested are intimidated by the huge episode count after seven seasons. But with the first six seasons currently on Netflix and the show not returning until October, they’ve got plenty of time to sample the various adventures of the monster-hunting Winchester brothers. Make Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime your new best friends and have a summer of marathons!

2. Jump headfirst into your fandoms

If you’re reading a site like Hypable, you probably have more than a passing interest in fandom. We all have those shows—or books or movies or video games, or what have you—that we’re particularly passionate about. But how far immersed are you in your fandoms? Do you have a few fandoms you find yourself on the fringe of, but aren’t sure how to approach, though you’d like to? The summer is a great time to dive in. Last summer I took the plunge and entered some fanfic challenges on Livejournal and ended up finding a community that has made this TV season a lot of fun.

While there can be a darker side to fandom, on the whole it should be a rewarding experience that only enhances your enjoyment of the material. What better time to test the waters—or do a cannon ball into the deep end—than between seasons when tensions are lower and communities are looking for new members? Try a fanfic challenge, look for and post on message boards, follow fellow fans on Twitter, and so on.

1. Try new fandoms

And by this I mean consider crossing some boundaries. Media philosopher Marshall McLuhan famously said, “The medium is the message,” meaning the medium that a text, so to speak, is presented in can be as influential and important as the material itself. Every fandom is different and the medium of the material can really help shape a fandom as well. Are you more of a television person but like to read? You might find a whole new experience by engaging in the fandom for your favorite book—Harry Potter, anyone? Movie people might think about joining a television show fandom, book fans might think about a video game fandom, and so on. Crossing genres is also a great way to stretch your creative muscles since you’ve gotten out of your comfort zone.

Bonus: Enjoy summer blockbusters and sports. A good summer day for me would be catching an Avengers matinee and getting home in time to catch a baseball game on TV. Summer 2012 is also an Olympic year, and there’s usually some kind of offering for everyone, even if you aren’t usually a sports junkie. Enjoy the season and its entertainment offerings for what they are.

So, dear readers, how do you beat the heat of summer hiatus?

  • Glaciusx

    Well, I’ll be watching Buffy and Angel all summer. I might watch Supernatural, too. :)

    • 7Starrchasers

      Definitely watch supernatural and fringe if you haven’t!

      • Glaciusx

        I’ll definitely consider Supernatural but what is Fringe about?

        • 7Starrchasers

          “Fringe is an American science fiction television series created by J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci. It premiered on the Fox Broadcasting network on September 9, 2008. The series follows Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv), Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson), and Walter Bishop (John Noble), members of a Federal Bureau of Investigation ”Fringe Division” team based in Boston, Massachusetts under the supervision of Homeland Security. The team uses ”fringe” science and FBI investigative techniques to investigate a series of unexplained, often ghastly occurrences, which are related to mysteries surrounding a parallel universe. ” – Wiki..It might not sound exciting, but I suggest you give it a go =) Its one of the best/underrated tv shows out there!

    • jordan.d

      A Joss summer is always a good summer!

      • Glaciusx

        Totally! :D

    • http://twitter.com/purplehrdwonder Caitlin Kelly

      If you like the Buffyverse, you should like Supernatural. I like to tell people unfamiliar with the show that Supernatural is about as Whedon as you can get without Joss being involved.

      • Glaciusx

        I just finished Buffy two days ago and now I’m on season 5 of Angel! Buffy was an incredible television experience for me, I really loved it. Angel was great, too! After I finish Angel I’m definitely going to move onto Supernatural. Hey, have you seen Charmed? Because people have been recommending that to me as well but I’m not so sure about investing my time into it. 

  • Claire

    I would recommend Leverage on TNT to anyone looking for a new summer series. >:) I’m so addicted and there are already 4 seasons out if you get addicted too and wanna catch up! Just sayin’. ;)

  • freckles.

    Lots of reading! :D I have a whole shelf of ‘to-be-reads’ just waiting for me, that have been shoved aside for schoolwork. Time to catch up on my 50 Book Challenge. :D

    • http://about.me/dshana Shana Debusschere


    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gavin-Walsh/100000260589961 Gavin Walsh

      i have to catch up on my 100 book challenge 

    • http://twitter.com/purplehrdwonder Caitlin Kelly

      Good call! I’ve fallen incredibly behind on my reading backlog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Adam-Berkowicz/100001206459875 Adam Berkowicz

    Watching any show on USA, watching Euro 2012, and watching the National Spelling Bee this Thursday!

  • http://twitter.com/BrandiTiana Brandi Delhagen


  • jordan.d

    X-files on netflix for me!  I watched the last few seasons when they originally aired, so I’m looking forward to watching it from the beginning!

  • http://twitter.com/LiamFloyd Liam Floyd

    Maybe I’ll finally try Doctor Who…

    • http://twitter.com/purplehrdwonder Caitlin Kelly

      I need to do that, too. I feel like a failed genre fan, never having seen it.

      • Glaciusx

        You definitely should! Series 7 is coming out next month and it should be incredible!!

  • N_HarryPotter7

    This summer I’m gonna try to watch as much of Lost as I can because I never watched it when it was airing, and I’m gonna start and get into Doctor Who and the Doctor Who fandom!

    • Emily Zitterkopf

      I am currently watching Lost for the first time too!  I am loving it so far!

    • http://twitter.com/ceilidh_brenzzz Ceilidh Brennan

      Just a warning: you will not be able to stop watching Lost once you start!

  • Jael

    I’m going to take a break from TV and practice archery.  Oh, and try Portal 2.

  • http://twitter.com/ceilidh_brenzzz Ceilidh Brennan

    I will be watching the Olympics where my next door neighbour will be competing!

  • Saskia17

    Well about to start watching Game of Thrones since I didn’t have time to watch this last season…thinking about watching Doctor Who since I feel like a terrible person for never having seen it…maybe a few other shows I might start watching or finish some that I’d sorta stopped watching over time…

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