Many who work in the industry mock it. Many who study it have decided it is a square vortex of evil. Many more believe it is a vacuous waste of time and energy.
By no means, is television popularly considered art, culturally enriching, or even good; yet millions of people watch television everyday. I’ve met people who blushed and were embarrassed at the fact that they watched television at all. It’s a choice and I can see why people would make it. My favourite line goes something like this, “I don’t watch television. It has nothing but mindless drivel.”
There’s nothing more awkward then asking someone what they think of a television show, or even a movie, and getting a disdainful look followed by an assertion that they only watch art house films. I do my best to assume that these people have chosen a lifestyle and opinion of popular culture that I do not understand.
The more adamant a person is about the evil of television the more likely I am to believe they watch Survivor.
I am a pop culture junkie. I do not aspire to write like Anton Chekhov, Leo Tolstoy, or even T.S. Elliot. They’re good at what they do but my interest lie with, Ray Bradbury, Roger Zelazny, Edgar Allan Poe, Stephen King, or Terry Pratchet.
I believe a good piece writing, be it theatre, television, novel, comic, or movie, (I’m sure I left something out.) should have two levels. The first being a story people can associate with while being entertained and second being something to challenge their minds. A great piece of writing should have three, the third being something that challenges their way of thinking.
That way if someone wants, they can partake in the art form and only pay attention to the first layer, therefore being entertained. You can read most of the Narnia series by C.S. Lewis and truly believe it is nothing but a pretty children’s story or you can choose to think about it more deeply and see the religious subtext.
What I’m saying, in short, is that despite our society’s oxy-moronic obsession with openly hating television, it is ok to admit you like it. There is nothing wrong with watching television.
My Name is Éric and I am Canadian… Watch Television.
Stay tuned for my TV Show revues.