Re: Ever like a show but...
Ooh, now I'm curious. I never cared at all for 7th Heaven - too treacly at best, too preachy at worst - but really liked Joan of Arcadia (well, the first season is all I've seen). I've actually been rewatching it, too.
I focused on JoA, using a single episode as an example of my thesis (how the episode's lesson is taught to the characters and viewers), then did the comparison. Seventh Heaven did not fare well, more as the show went on then in its early years. Wonder Years compared better. I said both of these basically straight out stated the lesson while JoA did more showing it than stating it. It wasn't a bad paper.
Makes sense, yeah. One of the things I like about JoA, tended to be more show than tell - plus some ambiguity and snark.
"You mean life?"
"Yeah. Does it get easy?"
"What do you want me to say?"
"Lie to me."