What does this "Child of Television" do during summer? Well strangely enough I haven’t been spending a lot of my time watching summer reruns. In the past summers had been that time I could give a show a second chance, but this summer it seems that I have better things to do than to watch TV. Contrary to popular belief I do not watch that much more TV than the average American. I have a day job, a real job that exploits my knowledge of Television but won’t let me watch TV on the clock. As I say in my Pre-ramble, "I read books, and not just the ones that Oprah tells me to". At the start of every summer I give myself a reading list, then I kick myself when I don’t get through all of the books that I want to have read by labor day. I have a stack of DVDs just staring at me, taunting me and I’m kicking myself because I haven’t gotten through all the DVDs that I had planed to watch by Labor Day (At the top of that stack is the Till Death Us Do Part Collection the British series that inspired All in the Family. When I’m done watching that I'll go find a copy of Steptoe and Son the British series that inspired Sanford and Son).
I do spend a great deal of my time writing. When I’m not at home in front of my computer, you may see me around town taking notes on my PDA. Not only do I write articles for my CHILD OF TELEVISION Blog and Podcast (where many of the articles will later get posted at Blogcritics.org) I sometimes post my two cents on Amanda Toering’s SpeakSpeak News Blog. I am always working on what I am sure will be the next great Sit-Com Pilot (I just started number four). About every other week or so I write and perform an original story at the STORY SALON on Wednesday nights (Listen to last Wednesday’s story The Fluffer Story.mp3). In fact my wife Donna and I are doing an evening of story telling on Friday, August 26 at the Coffee Fix 12508 Moorpark St Across from Studio City Library in Studio City, CA.
When I’m doing stuff around the house I always have the TV on. It’s my idea of multitasking. This Summer I find that the dial is usually set to TV Land or another cable channel that shows classic TV shows. For some reason I can see the "Walnut" episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show, the "Tribble" episode of STAR TREK, or the "Sammy Davis Jr." episode of All in the Family over and over and over again. I can’t say the same for many of the shows that are currently on the air. There were shows this past season that really liked watching but just didn’t care to see them again in reruns. I always hear that topical shows don’t have any longevity, but how do you explain All in the Family’s success 35 years later. I think I can sum it up in three words, QUALITY, INTELIGENCE and RISK. Can the networks sum it up? Feel free to use as many words as you need.
To quote Alfred Hitchcock, "You needn’t stand there staring. We’re not going to show you any more. In fact, I’m not even going to tell you what happened. Televisions audiences are becoming entirely too dependent".