Tuesday, 27 December 2005

Ok, truce over!

All year I look forward to what the TV schedulers have planned for us over Christmas and the New Year. Programmes are usually very exciting, with lots of film premieres and specially commissioned comedies and dramas.

Not this year!

It’s been absolutely dismal so far: nothing but repeats repeats repeats. Films one has seen so many times one can quote huge chunks of dialogue from; old comedies that weren’t even funny the first time round. Nothing, but nothing worth staying home for.

A few years ago I sent the Christmas TV listings to a friend of mine in Paris, who’s a real movie buff. I think there were something like 25 new films being shown over the period. She was suitably impressed and from then on always believed me when I assured her we had the best TV in the world.

I suspect we owe this new state of affairs to the advent of satellite and digital TV. We who rely solely on the five terrestrial channels for our entertainment are left high and dry. We only get the dregs. Subscribing to those new channels is getting more tempting by the day, but I know that too much choice can also be disheartening. (Actually, I’ve just looked at what was on offer on those channels and it wasn’t that good either.)

I adore films, but rarely go to the cinema. I used to go all the time when I lived in France, but got out of the habit when I moved to London: smoking was still allowed at the time and I found it unbearable to watch films through a haze and come out reeking of cigarette. Also, London cinemas didn't show the wide range of films I was accustomed to being able to watch. These days I’m usually in no hurry to see the new releases and until now I hadn’t felt the need to rent out films since I knew that more or less everything that had come out in the previous two years was bound to be shown at some point over the holidays.

I suppose I shouldn’t complain too much: the wonderful BBC adaptation of Bleak House ended just last week and we’ve been able to see several recent films in the past few months, but this is the time I want to see them, not earlier in the year.

I’m slapping the TV schedulers! Very hard! Slap!!!!


  1. You are so right about this! Slap them HARD!

    The graphics on two posts below are most impressive. *bowing*

  2. Slap away it is no better here.
    I have digital Cablevision TV with over 1035 channels available.
    I have over 15 "on-demand" channels, HBO, Cinemax, BBC, Court TV... etc., the idea being that you should be able to watch a show whenever you like, that will fit into your schedule hence the "on-demand" description.
    Well, I demand that somebody readdress the program scheduling and movie availability, because with all those choices I should be able to find something that will keep me entertained.
    Go ahead, you've got my support.

  3. Ah, the BBC have gone over to the American way of doing things, apparently. The holidays are a wasteland of repeats. Turner Broadcasting actually showed the same movie in a constant loop for 24 hours. Granted, it was 'A Christmas Story', Jean Shepherd's nostalgic recollection of his 1950's childhood, and if you haven't seen it, you really should - but still. Over and over and over, 24 solid hours. Slap away, i've got your back on this one.

  4. I have 'peasant vision'. No cable this far out of town, too cheap to get satellite, so we make do with one french channel and four english ones. I miss having an educational channel and something like PBS, but all in all, television is a waste of time. Whenever I've stayed in a hotel with tons of channels, there is still nothing worth watching. Slapping the programmers right along with you!!

  5. Tonight I'm annoyed about the TIMES of regular shows. They start any good show (if there are any good ones) too late.

  6. Oh, TLP, I didn't design the Menorah. All I can take credit for is being able to post animated gifs (I wish I was talented enough to program them). As for the previous animation, it's just a marquee. The html coding's very simple.

    I go to bed practically at dawn so I'm not bothered by the lateness of programmes; it's their lameness I'm bothered about. Of course, if I went walking with my buddy early in the morning, like you, I'd want them to schedule everything at a reasonable times too.

    SL, I should have specified I was mostly angry with the BBC b/c we pay a hefty sum for our TV licence every year and it's our money that's being used to produce the crap they're dishing out now. The other three channels are commercial ones and I supposed they're entitled to use their money he way they want.

    Isn't HBO great? :-)

    D, films on a loop, blech! It reminds of the time when Sky TV was being launched: they allowed everyone to see some of their films for free for a while. I was curious so I put it on. I know The Fourth Protocol very very well. LOL!

    K, I love watching TV. I've seen great stuff over the years. I don't like being taken for a ride, though.

    I believe this weekend's going to be a bit better. Fingers crossed...

  7. You need to slap Pakistan men for the way they murder women for "honor." And all the people there who turn away from it and do nothing about it.

  8. I will, TLP; I will! I have a small notebook full of suitable candidates. I'm adding those men to the list. As soon as I'm allowed to be a proper Rottweiler again... Grrr!


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