Too-Much-TV Era

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Too-Much-TV Era

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 27th, 2020, 6:36 pm

Just noticed this article "10 underrated shows you may have missed in the too-much-TV era" ... -tv-shows/

I didn't actually read it, but the title struck a chord. We now have so many TV series to choose from, new and old, it's overwhelming. And paralyzing.

When I was a kid (70's/80's) we basically had three networks so there wasn't much selection. Yeah, there were some classics like All in the Family and Taxi, but there was also a lot of crap like Love Boat and Fantasy Island. But we watched because there wasn't much else to do.

Today just the streaming services alone offer hundreds of quality series on top of the hundreds of network shows. A lot of these series are undoubtedly terrific but they get lost in the noise.

My wife and I went through a binge period where we watched the heavy hitters like Breaking Bad, Buffy, Game of Thrones, The Wire and a few others. But now it's like when I'm looking through all the choices on Netflix, unless it's a movie I'm not interested. I can't dedicate a weekend to one of these new shows. We have started a few only to quit after the first season or so.

It's the same for games. I look on my Twitter feed on any given day there are a dozen new games coming out I never heard of. In 1980 I would have dreamed to play one of these, but now I'm like *meh*.


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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby DrLitch » July 27th, 2020, 9:08 pm

Life is way too short. Early last year I pulled the plug on Cable and ditched my Satellite as well. I feel like a free person, unchained and uninhibited. I no longer have to sit "at this time on this channel" to watch a particular show. I no longer have to sit through adverts. I much prefer to read news over listening to news anchors I loathe. Without TV I can dedicate time to self study, academic things outside of work. Now that I have been able to dedicate some time to studying, I had an idea and I wrote a paper 6 months ago that has just recently been accepted in a major journal. While the Internet is a vast cesspool, I can still pick and choose what I read and I spend little time doing this. Even my wife, despite initial complaints, has completely U-turned and is reading more, learning more and doing more activities that have a benefit to her physical health. Having no TV has meant we do more things together, we always liked video gaming but now we both work out together, we go for walks, she is taking a self defense class for women, and I decided the time was nigh I learnt to cook. Our lives have been much improved without TV.

I have a different attitude to video gaming. I can go weeks without playing, binge play for a day or two, or just do a half hour here and there. Regarding choice, well I am thankful for reviewers like yourself who separate the wheat from the chaff. I use yours truly, Metacritic, and a couple of Youtube channels for that. TV... I just do not watch anymore. I did buy the Game of Throne Series but that is pretty much what I do nowadays, Walmart or Bestbuy, pick up a few Blu Rays, they sit on the shelf for months, I get a cold or flu, and then watch while in a fevered delirium.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby Zack Burner » July 28th, 2020, 10:16 am

You hit the nail on the head Critic! I 100% agree with you. There's too much to watch and the majority of it is either "stupid" (dumb sitcoms where people act like idiots), or "sick" graphic over-the-top violence and sex. As a kid and teenager, I grew up with limited networks and got by with basically just PBS, ABC, and the WB (now CW). I now have some of those shows on DVD and VHS which I keep in a box which I am saving for my future kids when the time comes, stuff like Pokemon (seasons 1-5 in pieces here and there), Bill Nye, Boy Meets World, Reading Rainbow, plus some gameshows from Nickelodeon such as Legends of the Hidden Temple. As an adult now, I mainly stick to ABC for 3 shows, Dancing with the Stars, The Good Doctor, and For Life, all three are quality shows. Everything else forget it, though I do have a soft spot for Saturday Night Live for a good laugh, the Twilight Zone (the original series), and first 5 seasons of The Walking Dead. Occasionally I watch a football game or two, but I'm pretty fussy about what I watch (and laugh at).

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby Voor » July 28th, 2020, 3:31 pm

We watch zero TV in its natural state except for sports. Just have an antenna, no cable.

Netflix, prime, and Disney for usual stuff. I’m always overwhelmed by choices, so I usually hop on to whet my friends are watching so I can participate in discussions. Last things I watched were Ozark and Waco.

I’ve been toying with the idea of watching all the old Twilight Zone episodes. Did that with old Star Treks and It was great.

As a family, we typically have a show we watch together. At the moment, Great British Baking Show and Boy Meets World. Lol.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby Herschie » July 29th, 2020, 6:18 pm

What I've been into recently is over the air television. It's free, and you just tend to watch what's on. Recently I've become my dad watching these black and white moves and shows from the 50s and 60s. I like the way they talked and behaved back then. Women especially were much classier. No blue hair (As far as I can tell), not covered in tattoos, no hideous nose rings. The men act respectable, opening doors for them, not calling them hoes or acting like slobs.

I think I'm out of my element in 2020.

But yeah, with OTA television, you simply watch what's on, just like you did in the good old days. If it wasn't for the Cubs, I doubt I'd have cable TV at all.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby Atariboy » July 29th, 2020, 7:22 pm

My tv world is also one that's predominantly portrayed in black & white. I'll never tire of movies from the 1930's and 1940's and television from the 1950's and 60's.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby goldenband » July 29th, 2020, 7:47 pm

I just can't get into the aesthetics of most TV shows over the last 15-20 years -- and every time my wife and I start to genuinely like one of them, it usually gets canceled!

The only things that hold our interest are a few police procedurals/crime shows, and cooking-related shows. Oh, and some animation like Family Guy and South Park, though both shows have gone precipitously downhill.

Other than that, the comedies are usually much too smug and self-aware, and the dramas are too "epic" and full of cardboard villains and blameless heroes.

The smartest shows tend to concern themselves with ultraviolent settings (The Wire, The Sopranos, Breaking Bad), and while I appreciate the intelligence of the writing and directing, the subject matter just doesn't have a lot of resonance for me: I just can't care that much about the life and fate of a stone-cold killer.

I've seen a few episodes of Modern Family that hinted at witty, warm writing, but the show is just so full of self-congratulatory smarm that it wears me down. Ed O'Neill is great, though.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby goldenband » July 29th, 2020, 9:33 pm

BTW our answer (in case it wasn't already obvious) has been to pretty much opt out of most current TV, and instead to watch older TV shows pretty systematically.

We've watched full runs of everything from science fiction like Twilight Zone and Star Trek, to sitcoms and police procedurals from the 1970s and 1980s, and even old game shows. There are a few British shows we really like too.

One I keep meaning to start is Hill Street Blues -- I've heard that show was something special, and my dad used to watch it when I was a kid.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby Buttermancan » July 30th, 2020, 4:33 am

Growing up here in England we had four channels. Yes you heard that right. Around 1996 we got channel 5 and it was a big event!
Nowadays there is so much choice that "Paralysis by Analysis" sets in.
I Don't watch normal TV. I watch Netflix or some other streaming service and Youtube. Mostly Youtube. Of course YouTube is full of rubbish as well but caters to those that have nich interests or hobbies that just aren't covered on terrestrial TV such as video games ;)

"Paralysis by Analysis" applies to video games too. I like at my games on the pc and sometimes spend more time thinking about what I should play rather than actually playing something.
It must be difficult for Indie Devs that put their heart and souls into developing a game only to have it lost in a sea of thousands of others trying to do the same thing. A different view is that digital distribution has provided them a platform that they wouldn't otherwise have.

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Re: Too-Much-TV Era

Postby newmodelarmy » July 30th, 2020, 5:11 am

Not sure where to begin with this topic. First off I guess I should state that I enjoy reading everyone's comments on the subject, very interesting. Like the VGC, I grew up in the 80's as it relates to most of my early TV habits. I used to love all of the sitcoms at the time like Cheers, Different Strokes, Night Court, Cosby Show and so on. As far as mainstream TV shows at the time I liked A-Team and Night Rider...things like that. Unfortunately before we got cable around '83 or '84 we were stuck with a handful of channels and we only had one TV which my Mom ruled over with an Iron Fist. Don't like "Little House on the Prairie"? Too bad, so sad! I am almost embarrassed to admit it but I am sure I know more Little House trivia then the typical male currently in their late 40's! Anyway I digress.

I have never really been into TV outside an occasional show and sports (love hockey and football) but some reason I have a huge monthly cable bill but that also covers internet, phone (my wife insists) and security. Also, like everybody else we have the usual streaming services and generally speaking I think we get our monies worth. That said, there are often times I am just flipping around for 45 minutes unable to decide because there is so much crap out there. Lately I have been drawn to John Wayne movies and they are terrific. Really enjoyed True Grit...what a classic.

So yes, I definitely think there is too much "TV" out there. When I flip channels and see the hundreds of stations I often think "how the heck are people making money and why in the world are advertisers spending money on these obscure channels", "who is watching this stuff"? I know I am not.

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