Thursday, May 03, 2007

TV as Entertainment

Skeet Ulrich, wondering if the fallout has affected everyone's brains. And if the TV audience is buying any of this.

I know it's a wild idea, but I do like to use TV as entertainment, but it takes some work from the viewer to keep it interesting. I like to interact with the "action" on the screen, helpfully pointing out instances where I notice room for improvement.

Drew enjoys this, as long as I don't do it, you know, aloud. So television viewing can be fun and challenging chez me.

24 is particularly juicy pickings this season, as the plot is silly, the dialog varies from patriotically wooden to expositorily unctuous, and acting is not strictly enforced. But be assured that everybody is really upset. And they're under the gun. And the perimeter is secured. Only not that secure, because "CTU" (the hopefully fictional "Counter Terrorism Unit" Jack Bauer works for) is the least competent agency since the Bush administration.

Also fun viewing (although not in the classic, ha-ha sense) is Jericho, about a small Kansas town (with suspiciously Southern California views) getting kicked around after the CTU helpers from 24 really eff up, and the terrorists nuke all the nice places to live. There seems to be only one family in town who are of average intelligence. The rest are either dumb-asses, dumb-ass and power-hungry, or just intent on milling around like sheep in the town square. There is one sheriff's deputy that I am pretty sure is a leftover Muppet. The only other exception is the mystery guy, Hawkins, played by Lennie James, who is probably a counter-terrorist good guy, but in possession of his own personal nuke, so we're keeping an eye on him.

Last night's episode ended with a looming battle with the neighboring town of New Bern, as national order seems to have devolved into a patchwork of warring city-states. Skeet Ulrich was last seen passing out weapons, conveniently offered by Lennie "Hawkins" James, to all comers over 16. I, personally, would have required an oath. It would have gone something like this:

I, state your name, pledge to the town of Jericho that I will fight to the death as long as the viewers don't get too attached to me, in which case I will fight until I get a sexy-looking cut on my face, and that I promise to be cuter than the New Bern residents so the viewers know who to root for.
One town, under CBS, in sweeps week, with access to the town salt mine for all.

And we must always end each episode with a rousing TURTELTAUB! as Jon Turteltaub's name appears, huge, for about a minute, on the screen.

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