Sunday, October 2, 2011

In Search of...a new season

Yes, the fall television season is in full swing and I am deliberating whether I love it or hate it. If this line up is indicative of our national psyche, then we are seriously longing for a past that we have romanticized beyond what it actually was, and we think superheroes are the only means for accomplishing justice in today's world.

Sure Pan Am Airlines and Playboy bunnies look glamorous, but do we really want to hearken back to a time when women could be fired for being pregnant and their salaries were not considered when applying for a mortgage? Oh, don't misunderstand me, I dig the big band music and bright red lipstick, not to mention men actually wearing suits and ties, but minorities were oppressed and the only people this period was actually good for were white males, so I'm not longing for anything but the fashion and music, frankly.

Now for our superheroes: Unforgettable, Person of Interest, and Prime Suspect. Yes, sign me up for the woman who never forgets anything. Clearly she has no inkling that once menopause hits, she'll remember nothing.

And Person of Interest, let's face it, we would like to believe that some hot guy out there who's supposed to be dead, has got our backs. Plus, he can kill bad guys willy nilly with no reliance on our criminal justice system, which is a nice bonus. And the guy who created the spying system that tramples our constitutional rights - well, good thing he's got a conscience and is using his power for good and not evil.

And what of our hat-wearing, liquor-drinking, almost-former-smoker who is up against not only the bad guys, but her male co-workers as well in Prime Suspect? Love her. She's painfully flawed, up against impossible odds and circumstances, and yet still manages to pursue what's right in an unfair world. You gotta love that.

Simon Cowell's X Factor. I know it has disappointed in the ratings, but I love it. First of all, seeing Simon and Paula together again smacking each other around is entertainment enough. But who doesn't want to see ageism eradicated? No one, that's who. The lady practicing to Aretha in her bathroom at night, the man living out of his car, the guy slinging burritos, come on. It's time that talent got a shot at success. And I, for one, applaud Simon for taking the age cap off and recognizing that heartbreak and struggle puts something in a voice that youth will never have, no matter how talented a twelve to fourteen year old may be.

And just when I was about to give up on anything I loved staying on the air past one season, at least I've got The Good Wife, Harry's Law, Castle, and the final season of Desperate Housewives to keep me warm. So how am I managing to watch all of this and get anything done? Three little letters - DVR! Yes, minus the commercials, you can trim at least twenty minutes off every hour of television. So no frivolous TV watching here anymore. Just previously recorded shows that shave hours off in wasted ad time. (Sorry advertisers - no sale.)

Yup, it's time to make some tough choices about time spent. Bunnies or stewardesses, cops or cops with super powers, lawyers or, well, lawyers - they don't really change. We'll see what survives the ratings battle and the network executives' hit list.

Whatever you're choosing to watch, I hope it brings you joy, entertainment, and the right shade of lipstick. Thanks for stopping by.

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