Saturday, February 5, 2011

This is why I don't watch television

People are often quite surprised when I tell them I don't watch TV.

Well, it's not that I don't watch it - it always seems to be on in our house! But it's usually tuned to Nickelodeon (Oliver has it on while he's inside - and sometimes outside - playing Lego, drawing, playing his DS...whatever), or one of the Discovery channels (Anthony has it on while he's inside - and sometimes outside - eating lunch, tidying up, or working in the shed).

Occasionally, I'll put on one of the music channels while I'm doing stuff, but our resident mini music critic ("Why are you so obsessed with the Foo Fighters mum?", "You've got bad taste in music mum.") will discreetly change the channel or turn it off while I'm not looking. Never mind, that's what stereos were created for!

But I digress. So unlike me.

I used to like TV. When Anthony and I were first together, we used to take the phone off the hook when The Simpsons were on (I know, truly sad), and many a happy hour was spent in front of Seinfeld or Friends or Law and Order.

But as time's rolled on, I've discovered that the more I see of TV, the less I like it. Here are some reasons:

  • Ads: Why does every family have either an immaculate kitchen/dining room or eat breakfast by the sea? I'm so sick of seeing gorgeous, flawless people in their gorgeous, flawless houses!
  • Reality TV: OK, I admit that in the past I've got hooked on vapid wonders such as 'America's Next Top Model' or 'The Amazing Race', but these infatuations are generally short-lived. The worst part is, you just know it's not real. Sometimes it's downright dangerous. Like the Biggest Loser for example. No one should lose that much weight that quickly!
  • American TV: Blah blah blah. Gorgeous, flawless people doing stupid things to each other in gorgeous, flawless mansions, hospitals, police stations....etc.
  • It's just all the same: It is, isn't it? Whether it's set in a hospital, on a farm or in a city police station, the characters are having the same kinds of dramas. And they're all gorgeous and flawless (you may have noticed a theme here). When someone hits on a unique and wonderful idea, pretty soon there are 20 clones and it's not unique and wonderful any more.
There are a couple of shows I do like: I love Spicks and Specks; Dr Who and Dexter are pretty cool, and I used to love that show, Monk (whatever happened to that?) but even then, I'm rarely motivated enough to remember to watch them each week.

In the end, I'd rather be reading, or blogging, or watching a movie even. It does mean I can't participate in the water cooler talk so much, but I just can't face enduring an hour of Grey's Anatomy so that I can put in my two cents.

What do you think of TV?


  1. Oh yeah, I've resigned myself to the fact that I will always find it harder to make small talk with the masses who love Grey's Anatomy, romantic comedies and Celine Dion. I'm sure most of the mums I know think the Foo Fighters are a breed of siamese fighting fish...
    Luckily I have enough geek friends to stay sane!

  2. i have it as background noise. i cant handle silence. I couldnt give a shit about various TV shows and whats happening, I just tell people their taste in tv is shit. :))

    my in laws do something that drives me to want to punch things... THEY MUTE THE ADS! which is fine in itself i guess, i always say its so they can fill the void with the sound of their own voices, they then talk about the ads and what they could be possibly be advertising. FUCKING TURN THE VOLUME UP THEN!!!!

    sorry, this particular nuance of my in laws gives me the major irrits.

    i need another beer.


  3. I had forgotten about Monk! I used to love that show, now I never even know what is on or when.

  4. Hmmmm . . . I like TV.
    Grand Designs, Glee, most SBS documentaries and Insight, and lots on ABC - Australian Story especially. I'm enjoying 'The Tudors' on ABC2 at the moment. Oh, and I've watched Rage on Saturday mornings since I was kneehigh to a grasshopper! We record most shows and watch them later, so we can fast forward the ads.
    I don't like reality TV, except 'so you think you can dance' - once they've picked their top dozen or so. I like dancing!
    I acknowledge that there are probably more useful things I could be doing than watching TV, but it's relaxing, and often informative.
    Leah. x

  5. Mel's Dad/Sam's GrandadFebruary 6, 2011 at 12:10 PM

    Dearest Girl,
    You just knew I'd have a go at this one!!!
    On a cold wet night in 1956, I sat with many others in a basement of the local electrical retailer, and watched Bruce Gyngell announce, "welcome to television", and I was hooked!!
    We got our first TV that year, and if it was on I'd watch it (when allowed). There were only a couple of channels back then, but it seems to me that with the multitude of options we have now, things haven't necessarily improved.
    I have never (and will never),watched The Simpsons, Friends, ER, Seinfeld, Australia's Funniest "Dickheads", Survivor (anywhere), Bold and the Beautiful, The Young and the "wrestlers",etc. etc.
    Any so called "reality" show has to be scripted, lit, make-upped, and all that goes with 'live' television.
    Even the news now has so many repeats of the same stories,and they use loop reels of the same scenes, over and over.
    There is no originality in programming any more.

    And, any channel which reduces (squeezes)the credits at the end of a movie, so they can advertise their other programs, needs to think about those of us who want to see who-was-who in what we've just watched!!
    So, from a real TV addict of the 60's through to the present, I am now much more selective.
    I just wish I could get back into reading more.
    Luv, Dad

  6. Hey Deb, we mute the ads too so don't visit us! the thing I hate most about tv is the news, they try to turn many stories into a soap opera. Just give us the facts and don't over dramatise everything!

  7. Confession time..........I love tv!!!!! Greys Anatomy, Packed to the Rafters, Private practice......the list goes on.........please don't banish me!!! Ido hate how the volume of the adds is louder than the show though. Laura


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