What if TV is worth watching again?

Television was pretty dire up until a few weeks ago. The only shows worth watching before the return of Lost and The L Word were The Office and 30 Rock.

OK, I will admit it, I am also a sucker for Grey’s Anatomy (and I use to be an avid watcher of ER in the Clooney days). Something about soap-opera tinged scalpel drama just appeals to me. Speaking of scalpels, now that I reinstated Showtime so I can watch the final season of The L Word, I am catching up on the new season of Dexter as well. Who would have thought a serial killer drama would be so enjoyable? I find the diversity of the cast impressive – and Deb has such a way with swear words!

I gave up on Desperate Housewives as of this season (see my post here explaining why). I have given up on House too although I used to quite like it. Don’t know if it was the feminist-bashing season opener or if House’s caustic wit and assholery antics have warn thin.

I haven’t ever watched Gossip Girl – can’t face it. The ads alone are more than enough – so many clothes! So many bone-thin bodies!

I have not had time yet to tune back into the new season of Nip/Tuck. I was so turned off by some of last season’s drama that I dread what might happen next. Will Sean be turning to the middle school set? Horrid.

As for new shows, I am loving United States of Tara. Toni Collette’s superb acting, John Corbett’s enviable affability, and Diablo Cody’s wonderful slice-of- life wit make for a great mix.

And, as for shows now deceased, the one I probably miss the most is Six Feet Under.

I also miss all the great telly from when I lived in England – with fewer channels they do a lot more great TV than we manage here stateside. I do occasionally watch BBC America, of course, but it ain’t the same as living across the pond and having ITV, Channel Four, and the Beeb!

As my DVR queue is finally full of some shows worth watching, I will post some questions to ponder of the TV-esque variety to allow myself some telly-time this evening. Some may turn into full posts later, some may not. Suppose it depends on how much TV I am watching and whether or not the shows are worthy of either praise or blame of the professorial what if variety… (And, dear readers, please feel free to post your answers to these questions in the comment thread. Or, if you are feeling writerly, contact me about guest posting. This would then give me more time to watch TV… Ha!)

What if Kate ruled the island? (Lost)

What if the Dunder-Mifflin crew made up Obama’s new white house staff? (The Office)

What if the crew of Gossip Girl were trafficked and became sweatshop laborers in the very factories that make all the duds they now where?

What if once women “speak the vagina monologues” their characters did not mysteriously disappear? (Grey’s Anatomy)

What if Dr. House were a woman? (You know SHE wouldn’t get away with all the crap he pulls!) (House)

What if they switched Wife Swap to Husband Swap?

What if bi-sexual characters were not always of the “crazy and hot” variety? (Grey’s Anatomy. Tila Tequila)

What if disabled characters were regularly featured as characters rather than relegated to the “overcoming obstacles” narratives of reality TV?

What if shows rewarded people for loving their bodies rather than hating them? (Biggest Loser, etc)

What if this were not (painfully!) the last season of the L Word? If the show continued as long as Happy Days, where would Better, Shane, and the crew be in 20 years?

OK people, go enjoy your box now. No, not that box silly — the one in your living room!

5 thoughts on “What if TV is worth watching again?”

  1. I too found myself enjoying Dexter, much to my surprise. Although it was (and still is) difficult for me to see Michael Hall (Dexter) as anyone other than David Fisher (Six Feet Under). And subsequently, as straight.

    If I may add to your list of enjoyable tv shows, I still watch episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which I thoroughly enjoy. I must admit I am in love with Willow. Wheaton did a fairly good job of inclusion of lesbian relationships, at least, although very much devoid of POC and transpeople. (Wheaton, are you listening? I love your work. But must it be so fucking white and cisgendered?) Unfortunately, I don’t recall any LGBT inclusion in his later works…

    Wife Swap definitely gets a pass in my opinion. The few times I have watched it, I have seen total disrespect of the women “wives”/guests by the husbands. And frankly, the whole heterosexist idea that we are all partnered in other sex relationships pisses me off.

    I would be more interested in partner or just plain people swap in a variety of healthy relationships, where people actually learn from each other and experience a variety of things without all the drama and disrespect.

    Another show that is interesting to watch (filled with sexism, racism, which I assume is there for historical accuracy and not just because we like to see people treated like shit) is Rome. But I have only watched one season so can’t speak to it beyond that.

  2. Rorysmomma,
    Ok, i will try to give GG a try. I need some fluff in my life right now.

    Shell,
    Sorry for your showtime loss.This means you are also missing out on The L Word and United States of Tara.

    Shermanvolvo,
    Yes, I too still think of Six Feet Under whenever I see MH. I miss that show!

    I never got into Buffy. I lived out of the country during its heyday. I feel like I missed a key part of pop culture history…

    Good points about the “swap” shows. What a concept — a show that people could LEARN from. Now that’s just crazy!

    I watched on episode of Rome but didn’t return. I imagine I would if I had more time. Alas, I have to limit what I watch — right now, I am having a hard time keeping up with my “must watch list” (Lost, United States of Tara, L Word, Office, 30 Rock)

  3. You actually make it seem so easy along with your presentation however I find this matter to be really something which I feel I might by no means understand. It sort of feels too complicated and extremely broad for me. I am having a look ahead in your next post, I will try to get the hold of it!

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