11 August 2011

Nothing worth watching . . .

You can read the article for yourself here, but in a nutshell the Supreme Court may rule on whether or not the FCC's indecency policy is "unconstitutionally vague".  According to some watch groups a ruling like this would open the floodgates for foul language and nudity on network television, no matter what time of the day it is.  That remains to be seen, but I am sure that a lack of constraint would eventually lead to a lack of responsibility on the part of the major networks, not that they have any now.  It certainly wouldn't happen all at once.

That's the way networks operate.  Little by little.  Take your favorite TV show - one you have watched for years.  I'll use Fox's House as an example.  I used to LOVE IT!  It was witty, suspenseful, original.  I couldn't get enough.  Christy and I watched it religiously for several years.  Now, I'm not saying it was ever the most wholesome family show, but next to most it wasn't bad.

I will never forget the time I finally convinced my parents and sisters to sit down and watch it with us.  We bragged about how great the show was and how it wasn't really that bad.  Well that was the episode where it got bad.  There were several scenes set in strip clubs, lots of drinking and vulgar language.  I was so embarrassed and so disappointed.  I felt a sense of loss.  Was I ever going to be able to watch my favorite show again?

They pulled back the reigns on the next few episodes.  But I noticed a trend; almost a formula.  The writers slowly started adding questionable content.  Every few weeks it would push the envelope a little further.  I also noticed that we were either so hooked on the show or becoming so desensitized that we kept on watching beyond where we should have drawn the line.  Eventually we did quit the show.

It isn't just House where I noticed this phenomenon.  The Office, Community, American Idol, Glee, 24, NFL Football and The Mentalist are all shows in which I noticed the same trend.  I do not believe this is by accident.  I believe this is how Hollywood and TV have operated for years and will continue to operate.  A ruling against the constitutionality of the FCC's indecency policy will speed things up for sure, but rest assured it's a direction we were heading in already.

By the way - you read right - I included the NFL in that list, and I'm not just talking about wardrobe malfunctions.  I'm talking about the clothing or should I say lack of clothing on the cheerleaders that is cause for most men to lust (which is adultery according to Jesus) to the Go Daddy and Victoria Secret commercials they show during their games.  The NFL is pushing the envelope any way they can, too.

Makes me think this TV fast may last a little longer than I planned.  It may take on a different form than it has now, but it could be here for the long haul.

Until next time what are you watching?

08 August 2011

Total Fail?

Alright I admit it.  This blog has been a FAIL.  I had high hopes of literary greatness as I documented my year without T.V., but alas those dreams have been shattered by my lack of creativity and discipline.  I don’t want to bore anyone (least of all myself) by posting pointless articles that simply repeat the same thing week after week.

I had lots of ideas for blog content when I set out to do this.  I had so many ideas that I was worried this could consume too much of my time.  You know what happened?  I didn’t write down a single idea.  FAIL.  As a result of this little misstep, I have learned to jot notes to myself the instant I have a thought or idea.

For those of you who actually care - I still have not watched T.V.  And as I type this I am just past the half way point of my goal of the Super Bowl on February 5 (181 days to go).  It has not been a real struggle except for last week when I was sick in stuck inside for 5 days. 

Now that football season is upon us, however, I can sense that it will become very difficult in the weeks to come.  The NFL lockout is over and sports talk radio is all a buzz with football chatter, which gives me the desire to watch football.  In fact, sports radio has made me want to watch football bad enough at the end of this month, that the thought has crossed my mind to give it up as well (at least for a short time).

I have a problem with this, though.  It feels like I am becoming pharisaical once I go down that road - legalistic - building one rule on top of another in order to protect myself from breaking a prior rule.  Therein lies one of my hesitations in doing this experiment in the first place - I don’t want to be judgmental or legalistic.  So, there is a fine line I must walk.  Maybe I’ll actually be diligent enough to let you know how my walk goes.

One question for you:  Have you built your own legalistic set of rules to live by?  In so doing you may be discounting the redemptive work of Christ on the cross.  Let’s make sure we are not trying to reach God by our good works, let us rather, praise God that HE pursues us despite our short comings!