Pop Culture Drop Out
Last year I gave up reading blogs for Lent. I realized midway through the Lenten season that if my “sacrifice” had any chance of producing a permanent change in my daily thoughts and habits, I had to reduce the number of blogs in my feeder. I did. I cut from the roster ruthlessly, even the very best blogs, the ones so terrible people rarely admit to reading them. I cut out Perez Hilton.
In the end, it wasn’t all that hard. With budgets being what they are, we cut out major cable a long time ago. Then we got rid of our TiVo, which sounded the death knell for our T.V. watching. Without shows waiting for us at a convenient time to watch, it became almost impossible to keep up. If you want to stop watching T.V., get rid of your TiVo. It’s an enabler. A wonderful, convenient, awesome enabler that helped me recognize 3/4 of the people featured on Perez. Once I stopped watching T.V., Perez was nothing more than a parade of nameless faces. Cut-cut!
Then we had our no-spend month. Well. When you aren’t going out or eating out, you spend a large amount of time at home. Presumably this time could be spent on reading books, but I burned through all the fun reads in my Unread Library over the summer and I’m not in the mood to read Italo Calvino. In fact, I just fell asleep writing that sentence. So The Mister and I started looking for shows to watch. Before October, we watched two and a half: The Office and Mad Men. The remaining half? True Blood. Since we don’t have cable, we have to wait until it’s available for purchase on itunes. That’s why it gets a half count. We still haven’t seen season 3 (it’s not available) so don’t tell me anything!
Two weeks into the no-spend month we started looking for new shows to watch. We used to watch crime shows, but those seem to suck lately. The family sitcoms didn’t look too interesting, which is good since we’ve missed most of them by the time we sit down to watch T.V. Then, one day I had a funny exchange on Twitter with Allison Winn Scotch about The Fresh Beat Band, aka Glee for kids. I turned to The Mister and said, “There’s a show called Glee everyone keeps talking about. We’re going to start watching it.” He took a moment from staring at the wall to mumble his assent.
So we did. We hopped on Hulu and watched some of season 1 and all of season 2, which is still in progress. At first we thought it was a bit silly. Five episodes later we were taking bets on whether the new guy is gay, rolling our eyes at Rachel, counting down the seconds for a scene with Coach Sue Sylvester or Brittany, and hoping Kurt finds a love interest. (Maybe I’m looking forward to that storyline more than The Mister.)
But that only adds one show to the roster. This puts us at 3.5 shows per year, a decidedly un-American number. It’s a wonder the government hasn’t shipped us to France in a fit of disgust. More importantly, we’re bored. Sure, we can talk to each other, but when you’re both recluses you can wrap up your day in a quick ten minutes.
I tried again to find season 3 of True Blood. No luck! I can’t even figure out when it will release. But itunes did suggest The Vampire Diaries as an alternative.
Great. More vampires.
I read the synopsis.
Great. More emo vampires hot for human girls.
I poked around itunes some more and came up dry. I went back to The Vampire Diaries. Sigh.
“I think I found another show to watch. It has good reviews, but I’m not sure if we’ll like it.”
“What’s it about?”
“Oh, you know. A teen aged vampire guy that doesn’t drink human blood is hot for a girl at school.”
“What the hell?! Another one?”
“That’s what’s popular right now. Vampires and ghosts and stuff.”
“Well, does this one at least want to have sex? Because if he doesn’t, I can’t get on board with this guy.”
“I’m pretty sure he does. I don’t know.”
“Fine. Let’s see if this one’s got a pair.”
We watched the pilot episode.
“That was pretty stupid.”
“Want to watch the next episode?”
And that’s how it goes with T.V. You can be watching a show you don’t even like and at the end of two hours and two shows you are suddenly invested in the love life of a vampire who’s remarkably angular features are a hair’s breath away from Willem Dafoe. (Not a compliment.) I suppose this is as good a time as any to say WOW. Teens. A lot has happened in the 20 years since I’ve been one. In my day, Denise Huxtable stayed out late and got a C on her term paper. In Mystic Falls, kids do homework in bars, sleep over at their undead boyfriend’s house, and snort crushed pain pills. Is it any wonder the girls these days are into diddling Popsicles?
We’re on episode 13 or 14 of season 1. Complaining about debauchery doesn’t mean we are going to stop watching debauchery. This is America, after all.
Speaking of which, what is everyone watching on T.V. right now? Oh! You know what other show we used to watch and love? Friday Night Lights. We lost track of it after season 2, and then couldn’t get back into it once we found it again. Is it worth trying to watch again? I will say that Coach Taylor…yummy. That dark hair and stoic personality reminds me of The Mister. Even better? HE IS HUMAN.