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When I'm not writing about my experiences in this journey called 'life', I'm singing and uploading my own interpretations of modern music. Click on "Cover Songs" to hear them, or on the YouTube logo on the right to see my YouTube channel.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Remote Censor

As I’ve mentioned before in one of my earlier postings, I’m quite the ‘movie buff’. I’ve seen most of the really good movies from the last decade and a half. I am also pretty up to date when it comes to music; (though I admit the hip hop scene has not been very interesting off late). But one topic that I am rather ignorant about is television shows.

Thanks to the wonderfully-glorious-and-widely-used-yet-illegal blessings of piracy, television shows have become one of the most downloaded media on the internet. I had a friend who knew what time Desperate Housewives aired in the States, and also knew how many hours afterwards he would find the episode online. His adept calculations, which took into consideration the show duration as well as the different time zones, were so natural to him I sometimes wonder whether he should have become a travel agent. Just like him, there are many others who have a collection of sorts when it comes to TV shows.

So why is it that I have somehow been out of the loop when it comes to TV? The main reason is that I watch TV at home during the weekends. That’s when they show all the repeat episodes of the shows aired during the week. Theoretically it should be a bonanza for me, a day filled with a mad mix of television genres, which would inevitably end in my passing out, senseless but satisfied. Just one problem; I have parents, and a younger brother.

This is the problem with living at home; everything has to be censored. Now, I know my brother is 16, but being the older brother I still have to make sure that there is some kind of moderation. And even if my mom is willing to let me watch something adult oriented (being an ADULT after all), my brother inevitably ends up watching TV with me, so my hands are tied. You must be thinking, “Surely that can’t be a problem; just don’t watch anything too graphic and you’ll be fine”. Easier said than done, my friend.

You see, there are certain trade secrets to television, and the media giants behind every successful show are in on them. No television show can work unless you have something sensual or racy involved. It doesn’t have to be of the in-your-face-oh-look-I’m-nude nature, but even something with mild connotations will work. Don’t believe me? Well take a look at some of your favourite shows, only this time put your darkside-conspiracy-theory glasses on.

Prison Break

Oh sure, this looks safe, it’s all about ‘crime’ and stuff. But besides the low key violence, there are drug references, references to homosexuality and let’s not forget Holly Valance’s extremely well planned lap-dance diversion in season 2.

Desperate Housewives

I don’t even have to start; the title of the show is enough to set off the alarm bells. Just imagine this scene: “Mom I’m watching TV!” “What’s on TV?” “Desperate Housewives” Yeah, that’ll go down well. And even if you manage to work your way around that little obstacle, any scene with Eva Longoria strutting around in lingerie or seducing some random gardener will really get you killed.

The O.C.

At least they managed to title the show something that was safe. But a drama involving rich high school kids can only lead to the obvious conclusions, especially when said ‘high school kids’ all appear to be in their early 20’s. Or maybe kids are just dumber in Orange County.


Ah, this sounds like a safe bet doesn’t it? A show about Superman as a boy, growing up in quiet old Smallville, Kansas. Think again. Tom Welling, who plays Clark Kent, is 22 years old. And yet, his character is, you guessed it, in HIGH SCHOOL. Despite his Kryptonian descendancy, I guess Superman was obviously quite illiterate. So it’s only natural that Clark Kent has to have some reason to flash his pecs and six-pack every now and then, and Lana Lang obviously has to find some way to be infected by an alien flower that makes her… horny. (Some handy flower huh?) And then there was the alien creature that infected people and built up adrenaline in their brains, thus leading the entire community to do mad things, such as make out with ex girlfriends in plain view. I rest my case.

One Tree Hill

So there’s this guy, who has a girlfriend in college, but leaves her for someone else, not knowing that the ex-girlfriend is pregnant with his son. He marries his new girlfriend, has another son, who ends up being his love-child’s arch enemy. They grow up, learn basketball, and swap girlfriends every now and again. Yes, let’s watch this show. It shows real promise. And when ratings start to fall, get Sophia Bush to shed a few clothes here and there, and throw in a lesbian side character. (I’m not making this up!)

Star Trek: The Next Generation

I just thought I’d throw this in because of personal experience, even though it’s an old show. I used to watch this faithfully when I was a kid, despite its late air time. One day my parents were bored and sat down to watch it with me. So it was only natural that that particular episode would involve the Enterprise docking on a certain planet whose communities have no laws. Hence everyone is having sex with everyone else in the open. Wonderful. I didn’t even last 5 minutes into that show.

Ugly Betty

Yes, you’d think that this show would be a winner, but I’m afraid not. How can it be, when Betty’s boss Daniel ends up sleeping with random models every other episode, and then falls for Rebecca Romijin Stamos, who turns out to be his long lost transsexual brother? Need I say more?

I could go on and on, but I think I’ve made my point. Late night television has now become as safe as a weekend in Amsterdam, and is probably as beneficial too. My weekends are spent watching television with the channel advance button firmly under by thumb; I tell you, it’s just not the way to watch TV. I can only sit and pray that ESPN won’t catch on and insert custom made Victoria’s Secret ads between the games.

Or am I too late?

1 comment:

Sabby said...

Ahhh yes, I know the feeling. I had to be part of the censor board for a while too...I just stopped watching TV! =/

(I wanted to comment on posts I missed out earlier on or just skimmed through so...apparently it starts from here =)

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