Thursday, December 17, 2009

1,000 Channels and nothing to watch

As I sit here, watching TV and working on my class finals, I realize that we pay nearly $70 a month for digital cable and we watch only about 50 channels on a routine basis, most of which are on basic cable. I believe that we 'need' all of these channels because we have it programmed into our brains that more is better. However, more is not better in this situation; more is gaudy and redundant. After all, who needs 8 versions of ESPN or 12 versions of the Discovery Channel? The important and popular stuff will be shown on the first or second version of the channel, the other play the shows we have a tendency to make fun of, like "Monster Quest," "Pregnant and didn't know it," and "Ghost Quest." I truly hate to say it, but shows like this, though enjoyable, are by no means necessary.
The other day on the course discussion board, someone mentioned how we had a lot of marathons on TV. I feel that this is because we like having something we are comfortable with and a lot of it. One such great marathon is the 24 hour marathon of "A Christmas Story." We have it on every year pretty much from start to finish. My whole family can recite the whole movie and mimic the actors to a "T" because we love the story, it is easily accessible, and it is just fun. Another good marathon for the holidays is the "007 Days of Christmas," nothing like watching a suave British spy going around the world, killing people, and sleeping with random women to put you in the holiday spirit. I don't know about anyone else, but I love both of these holiday traditions.
However, during the rest of the year, TV is dry in terms of good, original programming. Most cable channels have "new" shows, but there are only about 5 plot series to follow. There is the medical drama, the housewife drama, the what-the-hell-is-going-on drama, the generic comedy, and the good-times-with-no-plot show.
TV is not original anymore, old shows are coming back or being redone, new shows are not exactly new, and we are very stuck in our ways in terms of what we view. This is why we have marathons and predictable television.

No comments: