It's TV Turn Off Week starting tomorrow!
Let's celebrate by talking about how awesome TV is.
Even though I would really love to instead rant about the demonization of TV and TV watchers. And how there is nothing more obnoxious than a snooty, looking down at you "I don't watch TV" person. Oh, wait...the person who SAYS they don't watch TV yet when pressed, "only" watches fill in the blank: PBS, DVD, foreign films. Or "only" watches old TV shows on DVD.
I say, hurrah for TV!
Thanks to TV, and to DVDs, I can watch a variety of programs. Films that were only shown in big cities get delivered to my small town door. And while snobs may cringe that geography no longer serves to restrict such viewing to those who live in certain zip codes, I cheer it.
Go to a movie theatre, you say? Where I get crying babies, smelly people, obnoxious food smells, creepy pervs, uncomfortable chairs? When I can take that money and instead watch in the comfort of my own home on my -- wait for it -- TV?
Wait, you didn't mean films? That's not the TV you're talking about?
It's just the series TV that is bad. Sorry, friend. Serial storytelling -- the kind of drama that requires the attention of six, ten, twenty two hour viewing -- cannot be duplicated in a mere ninety minute film. You, non TV watcher, may not have the patience or attention to detail to be able to follow a long storyline with multiple arcs and characters. That is your loss.
Oh, it's just the reality part. Reality TV is bad! Eh. If you don't want to watch House Hunters, America's Next Top Model, and the like, fine. You have no interest in what homes sell for in Scotland and how they have washing machines in their kitchens. You don't care what the modeling industry is like. I don't care much about singing, so I'm not watching American Idol. But when you turn "not interested" into this badge of "me smarter! me better!" and now, my fave, "me healthier" I have to show you the door, sit on the sofa, and grab the remote.
But wait, there is the last argument! "You're watching too much." Sigh. Guess what? Anything can be done "too much." The kid who is reading too many books? Is also unhealthy from sitting on the sofa all day. The kid who is out playing sports all day? May have a healthier body, but how much reading is he doing? Want to have a "Balanced Life" week? Awesome. But turning off the TV? Strikes me as just the type of "life: you're doing it wrong" attitude I like to avoid.
Huh. I guess I did rant.
Well, I could do hundred posts on the great television that is out there, from classic to BBC, from reality to documentary, from film to series. Instead, and with great difficulty, I give you, for one week only, Liz B's Greatest TV Shows On DVD.
My self imposed rules:
-- the entire series had to be on DVD. So no current shows.
-- it was not originally shown on a premium channel. So no Deadwood. Or Rome.
-- I had to have watched it on DVD. So I am not going off my memory of having loved the show years ago. So no Moonlighting.
In reviewing my selection, it's easy to see what makes something a favorite of mine:
-- complex storytelling over multiple episodes
-- nuanced characters that aren't perfect
-- character growth
Want to guess what I picked?
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© Elizabeth Burns of A Chair, A Fireplace & A Tea Cozy
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