Friday, November 09, 2007


Used to be, I was strongly anti-TV. Rots your brain, I'd say. You lose IQ points, I'd say. I formed this opinion back in the late 80's, I think, when the height of TV fare was Dukes of Hazzard, Hee Haw and Dallas.

Even in recent years, we had satellite TV, but I'd still fire off "rots your brain" comments, due to the horror of commercials. I'd watch whatever my wife would have on, up to the first commercial break, then wander off and do something else. Or reach for the remote and mute that sucker. Kids shows (SpongeBob, Fairly Odd Parents, etc.) were tolerable, as there was only one break to mute/suffer through, but only barely tolerable.

Probably the best TV watching I did during all that time was Mystery Science Theatre 3000, which I'd tape (remember VHS?) and watch later. 2 hrs compressed to 1.5 or so.

Then I found the triple combo of iTunes, Netflix and BitTorrent. All three have solved the commercial problem, making it safe to wander back into the living room after the kids have gone to bed. But then I noticed something else. At some point in the last decade or so, shows got better. They actually became worth watching, (some of them anyway).

I'm not saying I don't have problems with them. Characters still drink and smoke and sleep around and do mean things. But at least the shows I'm watching these days have some depth, some creativity, something to hold my attention. (The current list, in order by my favorites: House, Heroes, Lost, American Idol, 24. Wife also watches/watched Bones, Grey's Anatomy, Prison Break, Alias.)

I hate to hear myself saying it, but I'm liking TV again.

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