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Every great TV show needs one good stand-alone episode

  • Apple TV+'s Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet and Hulu's High Fidelity have stood out by taking a break in their respective first seasons to tell a story not involving the main characters. "There are lots of variations of the stand-alone episode: bottle episodes, musical episodes, silent episodes, episodes that use a different genre or style, live episodes, episodes that tell a self-contained plot within a bigger serial arc," says Kathryn VanArendonk. "Most stand-alone episodes fall somewhere between good and amazing (except for live episodes, which almost universally suck), but one version that works particularly well is the character-based stand-alone, the episode that takes a break from the show’s usual protagonist(s) and tells a story from the perspective of someone else entirely. That’s the format for the stand-alones in both High Fidelity and Mythic Quest. In each case, midway through the season, one episode tells a story from the viewpoint of characters who, until then, haven’t been central to the story. Both episodes initially seem like a departure from the real center of the show, but in each case, they become emblems of the series’ core ideas."

    TOPICS: Mythic Quest, Apple TV+, Hulu, High Fidelity, Peak TV