I have a single rule when I watch something new, I give it five episodes before I decide to watch anymore. Purely because the pilot episode of a series is not a good way to judge how good it's going to be, they always make great pilot episodes, to catch the eye of the retarded masses.
A good pilot episode should always contain one if not all of these things:
1. Nudity, partial or full frontal. As shown in: Dollhouse, but in all seriousness anyone who doesn't enjoy the sight of Eliza Dushku in a swimsuit is either gay or dead.
I mean seriously, what's not to like.
Some series though go the whole hog and just go nuts for full frontal in the first episode. (I'm going to hell for this, I just know it.)
That is a screenshot from the first episode of Stargate SG-1, 'Children of the Gods', don't believe me go look it up. I'll wait right here, in fact sod it here's the scene:
A family show, I watched this with my dad when I was a kid for fucks sake.
Greatest offender: Stargate SG-1 (Obviously.)
2. A mystery to be solved. As shown by CSI, Numb3rs, Lost (But they hinged the entire fucking thing on mysteries to be solved but they didn't solve any of them.), Bones, NCIS, X Files, Castle pretty much every single crime show ever made.
But the mystery can't be the whole episode, the mystery has to just sit there and wait to be solved as the solvers run around and occasionally screw up. It makes those watching hark back to the days of Scooby Doo, I still watch these programs expecting the villain at the end to be wearing a swamp monster costume and scowling at the crack mystery crew.
Greatest Offender: The Mentalist
3. Gunfights/explosions. As shown in Burn Notice, Ultimate Force, The Unit etc. These shows use explosions and bullets more than dialogue and story, which can get slightly annoying. I mean you can either have a few explosions and a couple of bullets flying or you can just start a war. But as with salt and pepper, too little and it's bland, too much and you just don't want to eat it anymore.
Greatest Offender: Ultimate Force
4. The Hot one. Every guy will know what I mean, the hot chick that always pops up, here's a collection of said hot chicks.
Detective Kate Beckett from Castle
Temperence Brennan from Bones
Angela Montenegro from Bones
Doctor Saroyan from Bones
Kate from Lost
Abby Sciuto from NCIS
Sierra from Dollhouse
The list of hotties from Dollhouse can go on for days. I mean damn, it was rammed with beautiful women. But hot women do not make the series, 'A hottie is forever not just the pilot' this saying holds true until the hottie gets killed off or just written out.
Greatest Offender: Bones Bit of a U-turn there huh? Well there is a reason for this, Dollhouse escaped prosecution purely because the Dollhouse is a collection of beautiful people, and they're there becuase of their beauty. In Bones it's just fairly unnecessary, if you don't believe me try thinking of an episode of Bones without Angela, it wouldn't work at all. The entire series stopped being about the mystery and basically hangs on based on the women in it and the ensuing sexual tension with the male characters.
5. Sexual Tension. As seen in: CSI, NCIS, Bones, X Files, Castle, Burn Notice, Ultimate Force, basically any series with male and female characters. I know I just got into it right up there like it was a bad thing, but it can be a good thing, but as with everything else, all things in moderation. In the pilot there should be the bubbling sexual tension between two of the characters and it's all good, becuase you end up hoping they'll get together and then when they do you feel good for them. But when a series stops with it being in the background and ends up hanging the whole series off it you should realise that that series is done, very done, just cut your losses and stop watching.
Greatest Offender: Bones/Castle
These are all the major things. I mean there are more like Overlying plot, character development, underlying storyline, general acting etc. But I thin k I covered the real issues here.
For your trouble here's Eliza Dushku in leather.
I hope you enjoyed reading this as I did researching the hotties section.