I will be the first to admit that my addiction to television may be detrimental to my mental health.
While I do not believe that wasting away hours in front of the telly blazing through season 3 of Popular Show du jour is unhealthy in itself, (I generally find that avoiding real life by watching others’ mindlessly destroy their own, albeit fictional, lives is often a good way to initiate the healing process, e.g. from a break up) I often find that the ridiculous antics of the characters of any given popular television show drive me absolutely insane.
I warn you now, do not attempt to watch a television show with me, because you will inevitably become annoyed with my inability to contain myself from throwing my hands in the air and yelling out, “Are you fucking stupid? Are you trying to get everyone killed?” (The Walking Dead, in the five minutes of action that is so graciously included in every hour-long episode so as to keep the fans of season 1 from rioting and possibly causing their own apocalypse at AMC HQ, manages to evoke that sentiment from me every single time. My conclusion is that the writers are victims themselves; AMC became consumed by their own hubris, fired the first writers, and royally screwed the pooch by hiring writers who are still reeling from the success of Six Feet Under‘s patented nothing-happens-in-42-minutes-what-the-hell-did-i-just-watch-grass-grow writing method. But I digress.)
I cannot decide whether television shows today are being written in a purposeful attempt to incite anyone who is the possession of good common sense and morals, or it is simply that humankind does not possess those traits in the first place, resulting in largely unoriginal material. For instance, it’s hard for me to describe just how disappointed I am that there is not one television show that I can think of in which every single main character has remained faithful to a mate. Apparently it is not just sex that sells these days, but illicit, adulterous sex. Hollywood must imagine us all to be in need of progressively more shock value in order to be entertained.
I’m hereby submitting for your review what I would personally be shocked to see on TV/movies right now:
-A monogamous relationship
-Feminism, of any kind (Not the hokey ‘I’m a REAL woman and sleeping with every man I know proves how self-actualized I am!’ kind.)
-Comedy that does not include poop (Will someone PLEASE explain to me the appeal of the movie Bridesmaids? I’m hearing that it’s ‘revolutionized’ comedy, it’s for-women-by-women, that it’s simply HILARIOUS and AWARD-WINNING. Forgive me, but I cannot endorse for an Academy Award a film that involves a woman voiding her bowels in the sink. It’s tasteless and stupid, and most importantly, does not revolutionize comedy in any form.)
– INTELLIGENT comedy that is ACTUALLY for-women-by-women
-Women who are not driven crazy by upcoming nuptials (Entertainment Weekly actually proposed a fascinating thesis on this subject, which I am preparing to tackle in another blog post.)
-A Lesbian couple (It seems that we’ve grown accustomed to the idea of a gay couple, but it is rare to see a lesbian couple, much less a TRUE lesbian couple, i.e. NOT two Barbie’s in a non-monogamous relationship.)
-A wife/girlfriend that is not portrayed as a she-devil existing simply to ruin the men’s fun time
-What truly happens in an abusive relationship
Feel free to add to this list in the comments.