Catching up on Television

We watch too much television. At least that’s according to my wife. Not so much according to my peers. The difference is that as the 2015-16 prime time season began, we found ourselves unmoved to try most of the new sitcoms and dramas. We have added just one new series, Blackspot, and will probably sample Telenovela but that’s about it. Which is not to say we haven’t tried new things. Instead, we’re finding them in other places. On basic cable, we […]

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The Slow Death of the TV Programming Guide


Over the summer I had to write a piece imitating the style of the Object Lessons column from The Atlantic. I wrote about the vanishing use of the programming guide. Here’s a modified version for your consideration. Variety reported in August that pay-TV distributors lost 566,000 subscribers during the second quarter of 2015, which is traditionally a strong quarter. The shrinkage has accelerated from 0.1% annually to 0.7%. In 1992, Bruce Springsteen sang “57 Channels (And Nothin’ On)” noting that […]

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Some Ruminations on Television Villainy

After reviewing the DC documentary Necessary Evil, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to villains of all stripes. It’s also been on my mind  given my frustration with overly-long story arcs on some television series. A good hero, we’re constantly told, is defined by the quality of his opponent. Also, we’re told, everyone thinks they’re the star of their own story. It’s when those stories come into conflict do we get an interesting tale. Over at ComicMix, I wrote […]

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