Thursday, July 19, 2007

More late night TV thoughts

I get up a couple of times a night to let the dogs out, and while I'm waiting for them to do their business, I usually switch on the TV, and blearily scan through a few of the nearly infinite number of info-mercials that play on the regular channels when no one is watching, in the middle of the night. Last night, the instant I switched on, a smiling woman told me "I couldn't say this on TV if it wasn't true!" my first reaction was "Why the heck not?", but actually, it goes further than that. You couldn't say it on TV if it WAS true. TV is all about lies. Everything on TV is a lie, or at least a story, and that's why we love TV. It tells us what we want to hear, or just comforts us with entertaining stories. I occasionally see the bumper sticker "Kill your TV", and to me, that takes it too far, following the usual human habit of throwing out the baby with the bathwater. (I love that phrase.) My favorite of TV's lies are the Science Fiction Lies, which can be as un-grounded in reality as you care for. I have to catch myself when I get sucked into a story, trying to logically analyze it, and tell myself "It's just a show, I should really just relax." Also, when TV is at it's best, it's about surprising you. The best lies surprise you the most. My favorite surprise was in the final episode of "Ally McBeal" when it turned out that she was just a robot. Maybe I just dreamed that one. Maybe it's just another lie.

1 comment:

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