SHE SAID: TV Reunions

March 3, 2010

Okay, so I’m taking this post in a different direction.  Mainly because I “misunderheard” the question.  I’m going to write on shows I think should still be on the air.  And for what it’s worth, I don’t want a reunion show.  They always make me sad for the people involved and feeling old.

1. Arrested Development.  No, I’m not starting off like Jeremy in the 80’s … mainly because I am able to look past the 80’s.  I don’t live in the 80’s or the early 90’s, nor do I ski in attire from that era.  Arrested Development was the best show ever.  Let me rephrase that. Arrested Development was the best.  show.  ever.  Smart, funny, little clues for the die hards who watched regularly, and a cast that makes me wistful just to think about … I miss this show dearly.  When it was threatening to end, I sent out a petition for friends to sign.  The same day I received one from my brother about saving the planet.  Obviously, he has nobler goals.  I just want my favorite TV show back.  But not for one hokey show that will leave me wishing I had never seen anything beyond the last episode.  I want Arrested Development back on the air on a regular basis.  With all the original cast and writers.  Pronto.

2. Freaks and Geeks.  A reunion show would be silly since most of these actors refuse to work without at least three or four of the cast members of this show.  Still…I’d love to see what happens to Lindsay Weir and her band of merry men.

3. The Wonder Years.  I mean, aren’t they all?  Why stop in the teenage years?  I could use some pointers now…

I’m running into a problem.  We weren’t really allowed to watch television when I was younger.  I’m tapped out and I’ve already googled “80’s tv shows” and “90’s tv shows” and those I can remember have either done reunion shows, we know what they are up to, or a main character has died.

I’m going to freestyle now.

4. The 1986 Red Sox.  I want to see what would happen if you got these guys together in a room for a few hours with a camera.  Wait, I want a main room and a “confessional” – Real World style.

5.  Two and a Half Men.  Could this show go off the air already?  I would be excited for a reunion show because it would mean it was over, Charlie Sheen might have stopped hitting women, doing hard drugs and being a general idiot, and that poor boy would no longer have to act like a kid or have to interact with Charlie Sheen any longer.

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HE SAID: MTV

December 4, 2009

As I too often do, I found myself getting nostaligc last night, and in an effort to avoid studying for a final (which I’m furter doing by writing this post), I was watching old music videos on youtube.  Seriously, watch this video, power players like Chris Cornell and Eddie Vedder, singing together on a beach and in front of a bonfire. Epic.  Then I remembered my first experience with MTV.

When I was but a young pup, and MTV was not part of normal cable packages, they offered a free preview weekend.  My father, recorded a two-hour VHS tape of it for me.  Was it filled with shitty reality shows?  No, it was filled with music videos.  Terrific music videos like Jump by Van Halen (David Lee Roth era, eff you Sammy Hagar) & You Might Think by the Cars (talk about creepy).  Now, even back then it was not music videos 24 hours a day.

The first non-video music related show I can remember was Remote Control.  That show kicked some ass.  Talk about programming that was ahead of it’s time, at least for me anyway.  It was a quiz show that focused on music and movies, I would have rocked that like Tiger rocked that fire hydrant.  It also helped launch the careers of Adam Sandler and Colin Quinn.

Then came Real World, or as I like to call it, “The Beginning of the End.”  That is not to say Real World, at least the first half dozen seasons or so, was not entertaining.  Eric (from season 1 later starring in MTV’s The Grind) taught me my original definition of the word D-Bag, Stephen taught me the proper way to slap a woman (just kidding…although there may have been a few slaps thrown my sisters way at one point in time, when we were young, promise), and finally Puck taught me that it was ok to be a homophobe.  Ok ok…so maybe lessons learned from the Real World were not terrific, but luckily I have not turned into an abuser or a homophobe, d-bag still pending.

Since that show was so successful, it lead to the demise of MTV (and perhaps the demise of all tv with all the shitty reality shows).  Check out some of the programming that has been on MTV – The Osbournes, Pimp My Ride, Undressed, Newlyweds, Real World (seasons 10-whatever effing number they are on today), RW/RR Challenge, The Ashlee Simpson Show, Laguna Beach, The Hills, My Super Sweet 16, Punk’d, and Two-A-Days.  If you are wondering – Yes, I had to look those up.

I realize that I’m leaving out some entertaining stuff, like Beavis & Butthead and the Tom Green Show.  That’s not my point, those shows can be supplemental to cool music videos.  Instead of supplemental to other shit TV programming.  Of course, cool music videos would require cool music, and considering for the most part that doesn’t happen too much anymore, we might be screwed.


SHE SAID: MTV

December 3, 2009

For years, MTV defined cool.  I spent one weekend, when EMF came out with their video for Unbelievable, with which I was mildly obsessed, in front of the channel, afraid to leave the room in case the video (or that for Faith No More’s “Epic“*) was played.  It was one of the few channels my friends and I watched, and the release of a video was almost as important as the song for a few years.  Not that a bad video would ruin a good songs marketability, but a good video could sell a terrible song.  And did on many occasions.

MTV created another artistic outlet that tied in with music, an industry that has continued to churn out more and more artists and less and less longevity.  The music video gave the artists and the record companies a completely new way to serve up their product and a new way for it to be enjoyed by the consumer.  A brilliant idea, and an ingenuous one that I can appreciate even now that I’m not sitting on the edge of my seat crossing my fingers that EMF’s opening bars play next.

I understand why MTV felt the need to change.  Why tune into MTV when you have youtube?  MTV saw it’s monopoly on the music video slipping away and tried out something new.  While I hate what the programming has begun, I understand why they considered it a good business decision.  They did try to jazz it up a little without completely giving up music videos with the viewer commentary that ran along the bottom.  A painful and short lived addition because it devolved into shout outs to friends (hey Cory and Amanda!  love you guys!) and insightful lines like, I really like this video.

With the ability to watch any video from any time at the click of a finger, why would I spend a weekend in fear of missing the 3 minutes of glory that was the Unbelievable video?  Generations before watched events like the Kennedy assassination and civil rights protests and defined those as monumental televised events.  With MTV, my generation was able to add the release of the Thriller music video to our list of monumental televised events.

MTV stands for Music Television.  Perhaps they should have started another channel (NOT MTV2) and run the Real World and it’s illegitimate step children there.  There would have been viewer crossover, the music aspect of MTV could have evolved without having to share the stage with an unrelated act, and they could have remained true to the definition of their acronym.

As it is, there is no longer any music played on the Music Television channel, and so if there were a funeral for the channel, as there should have been years ago, I would be a pallbearer.  I have no issue carrying the coffin that holds MTV.  Maybe with my help, we can get it in the ground faster.

*Side note: I went back to view this video and I’m a little upset that I did because now I realize what terrible taste I had and the song and video that I thought RULED is actually quite terrible (lighting bolts and florescent MC Hammer pants!!!?).  In my defense, the top three songs of 1990 were Wilson Phillips-Hold On, Roxette-It Must Have Been Love, and Sinead O’Connor-Nothing Compares 2U (she would have been a fan of our texting abbreviations post) … the pickings were slim.