TV Talk

I’m faced with a TV dilemma!!!

Modern Family on Star World. The Big Bang Theory on Zee Cafe. They’re both on at the same time. How is one to pick? Sexual/gender stereotype humour or geekboy humour?A crazy set of characters…or a crazy set of characters? Gloria’s gabbing or Sheldon’s shennanigans?

Let’s see, Modern Family is on season 2, which in my opinion is the good one for any humour sitcom. Season 1 is usually spent just explaining the characters & their relationships. Seasons 3 and onwards go into flagging dead jokes or getting into the lives of side-characters who were never that interesting in the first place. The gay couple, Cam & Mitchell are starting to annoy me in this season, especially Cam as the excessively-hysteric-perpetually-PMSing gay guy. On the upside, the May-December family of Gloria & Jay are really coming into their own. This season focuses differences other than age such as races, countries & personalities. Manny could have been precocious but somehow manages to be delightful. This is really my favorite family of this series.

On the other hand, The Big Bang Theory appears to be airing randomly mashed-up reruns since Penny’s ‘honeying’ Leonard one day, avoiding his new girlfriend at the laundromat awkwardly another day and just being friendly girl-next-door after that. I didn’t manage to catch this series on its first run in India but I’m not really complaining. This way, I see each episode in isolation and not as part of the larger story. The jokes seem a whole lot funnier that way and Sheldon Cooper is always brilliant! (pun intended). Of note, I’ve never yet seen a bad The Big Bang Theory episode. Definitely still in the running to be my favorite sitcom.

This whole TV business is the boy’s fault since he got me hooked onto Dexter. I whined and fretted all along, about the monstrosity of relating to a serial killer, but I watched the last two seasons, regardless. Good stories turn out to be the only thing that the boy and I share a common passion for, never mind that our idea of what constitutes a good story or even which channels we receive them from, are worlds apart.

That seeped into the time before and after and soon I found myself tuning in to The Simpsons. My brief stint with The Family Guy put me off what they promoted as ‘even funnier than the Simpsons’. Sorry, I disagree, jokes about child abuse & rape are never going to sound funny to me. Go shrivel up, Griffin, you’re not funny in my book.

If the post-11pm slots are comedy, the pre-11pm viewing seems devoted to crime, of various types.Las Vegas was slightly interesting until they decided to knock off one of the protagonists, literally….by having her blown off the terrace of a casino. Huh, what??! I bleched & swore off after that. Even the new cast hasn’t helped. Tom Selleck as the new head of the Monteceito Hotel tries, but can’t be Ed Deline (played by James Caan who I recognized as Sonny Corleone from Godfather).

Castle with a female cop & a consulting crime fiction writer (insert obvious romantic spark) was briefly interesting but again, the ending was so meh! I’m dipping into White Collar a couple of nights a week now, but only if there isn’t anything else to watch. An ex-con working with the FBI is promising in a book, but in a TV screenplay it’s safe fare – predictable excitement.

Star World mostly reins as my number 1 channel with Zee Studio sitting tight on my ‘Pre-Ch’ (control-tab for the remote control) option. By around midnight, I’m usually in that nice just-before-sleeptime zone after a movie has gotten over or a good episode of Modern Family/The Big Bang Theory has just zoomed its credits. TV watching is like staying awake in that, if you don’t stop it at just the right time, it’s hard to ever stop.

A channel called Love CBS looked like it would replace Star World in my affections for awhile. Besides Oprah, Next Top Model, Racheal Ray, King Of Queens &Β Top Chef Masters were shows that gripped me. This channel has the plus of fewer & shorter ad breaks too and the promotime intro music doesn’t grate on your nerves the way Star World & Zee Cafe do (or perhaps that’s just because I watch them too much). But horror of horrors – the cablewallah menace struck! The channel disappeared (while the other less appealing CBS channels are still live & screaming), aborting what could have been a grand passion for cheesy reality TV. Worse still, it rendered this carefully created document quite useless since the channels all shifted one place (in some cases) or two after a certain channel number. GRMPH! My only hope is that Star World won’t disappear before MasterChef Australia (great, by the way, not at all like that horrible Gordon Ramsay-judged MasterChef America) finishes its run!

All of this spoilt-for-optionness is reserved for weekday evenings. Daytime & weekends are full of reruns of the same 3-4 shows. Weekends particularly get grating since they air the same show for hours on end and if you don’t particularly like one, you’re locked out of good viewing for a largish period. These are alternated by the cringeworthy Simi Garewal Presents India’s Most Desirable (and I don’t care to discuss this further, so don’t irritate me you Simi-fanboy-trolls!) The only good thing about weekend TV has to be Glee or now, Mad Men. Most times I miss these since I’m out in the 9pm-midnight period. Which is rather sad since both these shows seem to require continuity of viewership and don’t offer the viewer the same open relationship as sitcoms.

The boy points out that I can catch any of these shows online and without ad breaks. But…and how do I put this…I crib about the long ad breaks all the time…but *shuffles feet* the adrenalin rush of being able to catch a show at its time, without missing a single minute and even surviving repeat onslaught of fairness creams, automobiles & insurance advertisements…watching it online doesn’t quite do the same thing. :-p

I’m really watching too much television, aren’t I?

* Pictures from from Entertainment Wallpaper.


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6 thoughts on “TV Talk

  1. I haven’t followed a show (or watched a movie) on tv for almost a year now. I’m hooked onto watching them back-to-back on my pc, at my convenience. If, over the next few years, our broadband speed increases and something like netflix/hulu starts up in India, I won’t even need a tv.

    1. @Kailash Iyer: My dad already does that. I’m stuck on a bad connection in the daytime hours so watching online with that perpetual ‘Buffering’ symbol is even more of a pain in the neck than the over-frequent ad breaks on TV. Maybe in a few years time…

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