Stop the carousel; I want to get off.

Not without sadness (and a curious twinge of betrayal), I'm dropping Glee from my DVR's to-do list. Three episodes into the fourth season, and I'm calling it quits.

It's not just the changes in this year of the diaspora that sent Rachel and then Kurt to New York and the rest of the Class of McKinley '12 who knows where. I mean, I like some of the new cast members (Dean Geyer's Brody) and don't like others (Jacob Artist's Jake). But I will admit I miss Santana (Naya Rivera) more than I ever thought I would.

The show just seems to be flinging boas at the wall in an attempt to keep the audience entertained. There are all these distracting guest stars like Kate Hudson, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Whoopi Goldberg, who only serve to shatter Glee's brittle-sugar walls of illusion.

The plots seem to be repeating (another student council election? Another Britney Spears tribute?), and even the music seems forced.

Let's see, on this week's "Makeover," we had a Tears for Fears song, one from Hole, a rare Sheryl Crow stinker, and a Fred Astaire/Annie mashup. Hardly a sound track to inspire whistling.

On a side note, did you catch the odd elevator-music version of "Moon River" that played as Rachel and Brody kissed for the first time (just before the totally predictable return of Finn)?

You could interpret this as Rachel's Breakfast at Tiffany's moment, but my theory, because the musical style was so stuffily incompatible with Glee's usual jams, is that the producers layered it in at the last minute as a tribute to the passing of Andy Williams.

But back to the breakup. It's high time Fox conceded Glee needs to be tightened and focused. Trying to fill that hour time slot every week, it feels seriously padded. This is a sitcom. Schedule it like one.

Look, other than an initial honeymoon period, it's never been easy loving Glee. But the show's saving graces - razor-sharp punch lines and inspired vocal arrangements - are fewer and farther between.

I hate to jump the good ship lollipop, but I've officially dropped you from my DVR's series list, Glee. You wouldn't want me to mercy record you, would you?

First to go. It's time to play "What Will Be the First of the New Shows to Get Canceled?" Hardly seems fair, right, because the CW hasn't even debuted its slate yet.

Yet, I am ready to project that the first reject will be a sitcom: ABC's Neighbors, NBC's Guys With Kids, or NBC's Animal Practice.

Neighbors, about space aliens in the Jersey suburbs, would seem immune. It debuted this week with a hefty 9.3 million viewers. But that's only because it followed Modern Family (and still lost a third of that audience). Now that people have gotten a look at this monstrosity, I predict the numbers will drop fast.

But not fast enough. The brain-dead Guys will be the first one yanked, maybe before the CW shows even hit the air in October.

Hello, shorty. One of the funnier plotlines this week centered on a bartending Nick (Jake Johnson) meeting his future self (Raymond J. Barry, Raylan's daddy on Justified) as a patron on New Girl.

At first skeptical, Nick becomes convinced when the barfly shares a number of personal insights no one else was likely to know.

Unremarked upon, oddly enough, is the fact future Nick is a full head taller than today's model. There's a similar inexplicable height differential between Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis in the new time-travel movie Looper. Maybe both guys had late growth spurts.

Anyway, loved the reaction of Schmidt (Max Greenfield) when he finds out Nick is conversing with his future self: "Ask him when I meet Kanye."

Only me. My favorite acceptance speech at this week's Emmy Awards was that of Modern Family creator Steve Levitan: "I want to thank me for hiring me as a director when no one else would."

Contact David Hiltbrand

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