April 27, 2009 Leave a comment
Our weekend property in Oregon has many similarities to the home we lived in, in New Jersey, while the girls were young. It’s fun and nostalgic for them to visit us. I’m still adjusting to this shift in our lives, and of visiting our girls, at their homes.
There’s no TV or internet access in our 5th wheel, and cell coverage is weak, so I learned about Anthony Johnson’s – Solving Stonehenge when we got home. This is my kind of research book and I will get and read it, but it’s currently only available in the UK, so I’ll have to wait. Which means, I’ll focus on writing my stories and someday soon, connect with readers. Dreams come true with action and work, not just hope. Good stories need to be real.
Which leads to what’s called Reality TV, my personal favorite is Extreme Makeover because I’m all about building community and paying it forward. Home and family, whatever that looks like to us as individuals, is the foundation we stand upon as we live life. Some Reality TV shows are about competing for a prize, or a personal goal, which is fine but if there’s no benefit beyond money or sex, for one person, I don’t understand why anyone watches. But Ed likes to flip channels. Last night, he was most interested in, the TVLand awards.
The first honor that stood out to me was the awards to the Bundy Family, of “Married with Children”, as being an innovative show. This was the show that wouldn’t die, on a network (FOX) that was considered the bastard child of television, at that time. I love a good rebel story, a light nose punch on the acceptable norm, of societal correctness.
There were other honors and awards I thought were pretty cool. But then, M*A*S*H was the focus, for its impact and value, for so many years. This show was a combination of humor and drama, yet was also, the ultimate human reality show. Alan Alda stated it clearly; what made the show powerful, to the actors and the audience, was the truth that real people lived these stories. Rebels, misfits, conservatives, and the pompous politically correct, were melded into a family. The conditions were extreme, and it was only a few years of their lives, yet embraced the heights and depths of humanity.
We need light entertainment too, laughs and tears, news and views, and TV gives us lots of that in sound bites, interspersed with product marketing. I think TV is remaking itself, like all the industries in the country. But it needs to consider its audience more.
An advertisement for a special antenna, to tap the new TV frequencies, tells viewers to check the company website for more information. How will that work? The viewer who can’t get TV signals, without this certain antenna, is expected to access the internet through a computer. Time and money was assigned to this advertisement by educated people, yet no one considered how this ad could possibly reach a customer, interested in this product. But, it gave us a good laugh!