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(Salon)   The future of television is basically "Ow, My Balls"   (salon.com) divider line 123
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11326 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 May 2013 at 9:36 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-10 10:27:23 AM

mod3072: There's still some good stuff on, you just have to sort through a LOT of garbage to find it. It kind of makes me sad that shows like Jersey Shore, Desperate Housewives, and Honey Boo Boo exist and have regular viewership, but they do. The major networks are all but a total loss, but AMC still has some good shows. What is even more disturbing to me than the networks going down the crapper are that some of the best channels out there have completely sold out. NatGeo, Discovery Channel, TLC, etc. used to have shows that were both interesting and informative. There are still a few good things on them, but it seems like it's mostly Amish Mafia and Ancient Aliens and pseudo-reality bullshiat. Those channels used to cater to a crowd with some intellectual curiosity and more than 2 functioning neurons. Now they are about as informative as cable news.


The problem there is the advertising model is being wrecked by all derivatives of On-Demand. People aren't willing to sit down at a specific time and watch a given show. Combine that with the increasing media consolidation creating homogenization amongst the networks. Now your basic cable which used to cater to a general niche is being homogenized and it's the expensive digital cable/satellite shiat that caters to the niche. And even then those channels have to have their generic catch-all programming that ruins the niche. The last factor is talent dilution: since there are SO many potential outlets, a lot of crap gets past the network since they can always find some timeslot for it. When we only had 10 or so good networks (the 3 big ones and 7 or 8 big cable channels) you could enact some more quality controls.
 
2013-05-10 10:29:09 AM

lousyskater: BlueDWarrior: If you go on anime forums, you see this in complaints about 'moe' anime being so predominant.

The problem is people see this as a recent issue when it's been the standard for the last 25 years. They act like it's something new because they didn't get exposed to it until the internet made it stupid easy to keep up with the stuff currently airing there and they still have their nostalgia glasses on full blast.


The fact it's hard to find a list in English that accurately documents all of the productions before 1998 should say something.
It's like video games, once you get 15 years out it's really hard to remember all the shiatty ones.
 
2013-05-10 10:29:46 AM

NutWrench: If I could go back to any point in time for my entertainment, it would be right around 1985. The glory days of cable TV, when 3/4 of a program's hour wasn't either ads or promotions for other shows. My favorite show was USA's "Night Flight," a variety show that the network would start running around 9pm on Saturday nights and continue until 4-5am the next morning. My roommates and I would sometimes stay up all night.


We didn't have cable back then so I can't speak to that but if you try to watch '80s network shows today, they're pretty cheesy. Shows from the 1990s hold up much better. Three Star Trek series, Seinfeld, MST3K,  X-Files, Twin Peaks, Beavis and Butthead, South Park, Dr. Katz, Mr.Show etc. Just about everything was better in the 1990s.
 
2013-05-10 10:30:10 AM
That's because the future of America is basically Idiocracy.
/less a movie, more dark prophecy everyday
 
2013-05-10 10:30:17 AM

NutWrench: If I could go back to any point in time for my entertainment, it would be right around 1985. The glory days of cable TV, when 3/4 of a program's hour wasn't either ads or promotions for other shows. My favorite show was USA's "Night Flight," a variety show that the network would start running around 9pm on Saturday nights and continue until 4-5am the next morning. My roommates and I would sometimes stay up all night.


USA's "Up all night" was b-movie glory. I wish I had smoked pot back then, I would have appreciated how awesome CATV was in the golden years.
 
2013-05-10 10:31:31 AM
I understand that older non gamer doesn't get a YouTube channel aimed at young gamers. What I don't understand is why he thinks that signals the end of television.

If anything, media now has something for everybody. I'm currently enjoying Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead, Battle Star Galactica, Game of Thrones, Archer, etc. Considering I grew up in the 80's watching Dukes of Hazard, The A-Team, Riptide, the orignal Battlestar, etc - I appreciate how good modern TV is.

We've never had such a huge variety of choices as now. If anything, in my cynical moments, I imagine the future may be more like Wall-E than idiocracy.
 
2013-05-10 10:33:06 AM

Mugato: NutWrench: If I could go back to any point in time for my entertainment, it would be right around 1985. The glory days of cable TV, when 3/4 of a program's hour wasn't either ads or promotions for other shows. My favorite show was USA's "Night Flight," a variety show that the network would start running around 9pm on Saturday nights and continue until 4-5am the next morning. My roommates and I would sometimes stay up all night.

We didn't have cable back then so I can't speak to that but if you try to watch '80s network shows today, they're pretty cheesy. Shows from the 1990s hold up much better. Three Star Trek series, Seinfeld, MST3K,  X-Files, Twin Peaks, Beavis and Butthead, South Park, Dr. Katz, Mr.Show etc. Just about everything was better in the 1990s.


Yes. Alot of win in this post. I only barely consider South Park a 90's thing though. I identify it with assholes who were teens in the early 00's, it's always going to be "bush era programming" to me.
 
2013-05-10 10:33:41 AM
I can't imagine anything more boring than watching somebody else play a video game. What's the farking point when you can do it?

All I've heard all my life is how much television sucks. It always has and always will. There are far more stupid people than rocket scientists in the world and they choose what's popular. The internet, with all of it's potential for educating and enlightening, is no different.

People watching people fail in internet videos aren't any different than people watching reality television for the past 20 years. They need to watch somebody be worse off than them. For many people that have had to suffer through helicopter parenting all their life, didn't have to go out and get a job when they were teenagers, can't accept criticism, and spend their lives getting fat from sitting on a computer all day, it's just what the doctor ordered.
 
2013-05-10 10:35:17 AM
recently.rainweb.net
 
2013-05-10 10:37:57 AM

DubtodaIll: I can't stand naming and dividing "generations."  There is no line in the sand or some magical point in time where one generation ends and the next one begins.


I agree that grouping people in that way is bullshiat. It contributes to some herd mentality of "I'm from this generation so I have to think and act this way". It's all media produced nonsense. I guess if they absolutely had to categorize people in this arbitrary way, the WWII/Baby Boomers/Gen Xers distinctions makes a little sense but what is the real difference between the Gen Xers, Gen Yers and Millenials besides what version of iPod they use? There are no real differences like there were between the "Greatest Generation", the "Hippies turned Yuppies" and their "Slacker" children.
 
2013-05-10 10:38:24 AM
Whatever happened to the TV of Tomorrow?
 
2013-05-10 10:39:42 AM
The geeks won the culture war, and guess what? Their tastes aren't any more sophisticated or intelligent than any prior generation's. They're just a new social clique, not any kind of evolution of the species.

The butthurt over this from all sides is pretty funny, though maybe not as funny as a good episode of "Ow, My Balls" (that wasn't as prescient a joke as everyone thinks, btw. Remember America's Funniest Home Videos? That's literally all the show was).
 
2013-05-10 10:40:21 AM

Fano: Whatever happened to the TV of Tomorrow?


Check your listings
 
2013-05-10 10:44:13 AM

EdgeRunner: The geeks won the culture war, and guess what? Their tastes aren't any more sophisticated or intelligent than any prior generation's. They're just a new social clique, not any kind of evolution of the species.

The butthurt over this from all sides is pretty funny, though maybe not as funny as a good episode of "Ow, My Balls" (that wasn't as prescient a joke as everyone thinks, btw. Remember America's Funniest Home Videos? That's literally all the show was).


Geeks didn't win any "culture war", pop fashion and tastes always change, it's a cycle.

America's Funniest Home Videos was bad, reality on Speed channel is even worse -- more Ow, My Ballsish
 
2013-05-10 10:45:38 AM

Louisiana_Sitar_Club: And they love, love, love to watch videos of other gamers playing video games.

This I do not understand.  Keep in mind, I started with an Atari 2600 and have kept at it  to this very day.  I adore gaming.  However, I don't get why my 13 yr old will sit for hours watching youtube clips of some jackass riding a minecart through his gold farm.  p.s. I just finished building my goldfarm :D


First, congrats on your goldfarm, whatever the hell that is.  :)

Secondly, our generation isn't exactly off the hook from the whole "I don't understand how people can watch video games" thing.  I seem to recall a syndicated show back in the mid-80s where the contestants would play arcade games, and the viewer would watch them play.  In retrospect, it was remarkably stupid...yet I'll admit that when I was 13, I would watch it every Saturday.

/off to feel shame
 
2013-05-10 10:46:33 AM

neongoats: Yes. Alot of win in this post. I only barely consider South Park a 90's thing though


Well that's because it's been on forever. But it did start in 1997. I especially remember the episode from 1998 where they woke up a guy who was frozen since 1996 and everyone treated him like a caveman. He was used to listening to Ace of Base and being from a time when the web was a new development and found its modern advances strange and scary. Especially the new found, easily accessed porn. If there was a time capsule that would summarize the '90s, that episode would be included.
 
2013-05-10 10:50:01 AM
While I agree that mainstream TV and Cable networks are going downhill, we've got new choices that are catering to a niche audience.

TWiT, Revision3, Channel Filp, Netflix, etc.

Instead of the box you rent from the cable company for $5 for life, you use your game system or get a $50 box to connect to your TV. All this stuff is available, on demand. You don't have to watch it at 11:30, you get to pause it to go get a snack from the fridge.

Most of CBS, NBC, and ABC is available online anyway. So is PBS and BBC. It's easy to find what you want if you don't mind watching it the next day; you don't even need a TiVO.

I would believe the reason is plain greed. There are simply a lot of idiots out there, and dumb shows are gobbled up by a wider audience. You can get more Nielsen ratings, and charge advertisers more; but it has little to do with reputation or who's actually watching.

Cable is just a race to the fat bottom right now.
 
2013-05-10 10:58:35 AM
The Irresponsible Captain: While I agree that mainstream TV and Cable networks are going downhill, we've got new choices that are catering to a niche audience.

TWiT, Revision3, Channel Filp, Netflix, etc.

That's it. There's no money in TV any longer. TV is dead, it just hasn't been buried yet.  Besides sports no one will watch commercials as people record and watch at their convenience.

The web can produce the long tail shows and make it with the very low distribution AND  low production costs.  The regular TV and cable can only lower their production. Would you advertise your product on TV?

/.pub FTW
 
2013-05-10 10:59:31 AM

Mugato: NutWrench: If I could go back to any point in time for my entertainment, it would be right around 1985. The glory days of cable TV, when 3/4 of a program's hour wasn't either ads or promotions for other shows. My favorite show was USA's "Night Flight," a variety show that the network would start running around 9pm on Saturday nights and continue until 4-5am the next morning. My roommates and I would sometimes stay up all night.

We didn't have cable back then so I can't speak to that but if you try to watch '80s network shows today, they're pretty cheesy.


Cheers holds up. And Family Ties was better than average sitcom for the most part. Moonlighting when it was in its prime was a mixed bag: the action scenes are pure 80s cheese but the screwball comedy rapid-fire dialogue still stands out. But apart from that, not much of it aged well.
 
2013-05-10 11:09:57 AM

gunga galunga: Cheers holds up. And Family Ties was better than average sitcom for the most part. Moonlighting when it was in its prime was a mixed bag: the action scenes are pure 80s cheese but the screwball comedy rapid-fire dialogue still stands out. But apart from that, not much of it aged well.


You forgot the best of the late 80s:

www.badassoftheweek.com
 
2013-05-10 11:10:18 AM
We should have more TV shows like this one:


Golden Balls

Golden Balls instead of Ow My Balls
 
2013-05-10 11:17:48 AM
Has anyone seen the Hulu exclusive The Online Gamer?
ecx.images-amazon.com

Watching that show made me give up video games all together.
It really showed it as an addictive angry anti-social behavior, while attempting to be funny.
Not sure if it was the poor writing or that I actually knew people who acted somewhat like that, back in the internet cafe days.
So sad.
 
2013-05-10 11:18:25 AM

Count_Crackula: First, congrats on your goldfarm, whatever the hell that is. :)

Thanks, It's a minecraft thing.
 
2013-05-10 11:20:03 AM
I'll go ya one further...

The future of America is Idiocracy.

/future?
 
2013-05-10 11:25:13 AM
The future of television is none
 
2013-05-10 11:27:09 AM
AliceBToklasLives:
Yes, TV has never been better.  Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire, Mad Men, Shameless, Dexter.  That's just what's currently running.  Take the last 10 years or so  and you have: The Wire, Deadwood, Rome, BSG, The Sopranos, Curb,  Buffy and Angel, Arrested Development, The Tudors, Big Love, It's Always Sunny, etc. etc. etc.

/without reality TV, all of these shows would have to be dumbed down - kind of like back in the day when Hill Street Blues had to have the occasional car chase with wha wha 70s music so the idiots weren't scared away by the witty dialogue.


Total agreement with this. Looking past all the crap, just the fact that there are more than 3 great shows existing at the same time and we're not forced to choose between 4 or 5 channels with nothing appealing on puts us ahead of any other time period. Not to mention the production values on some shows now come close to rivaling movies. Plus I rarely sit through commercials anymore.
 
2013-05-10 11:30:03 AM

CheapEngineer: AliceBToklasLives: orclover: The Future of?  Have you seen TV lately?

TV has never been better.

WTF Indeed: "Lost Boy Generation"? I'm pretty sure the downfall of TV quality is directly related to Reality TV shows geared toward women and middle-aged men who want to relive their glory years. Eg, Baby Boomers.

We need these shows so that the good shows don't have to cater to the idiots.  Survivor saved television.

I realize this is Fark and all, and I've been here a year or two but that's the most idiotic *and* disturbing thing I've ever read.

\Jesus, what a crap show
\\and I have to see promos for that goddamn thing every day, all friggin day long
\\\what's next? "Fox News Saved Journalism"?


No, no, you were supposed to put up your hands and say "whoa, whoa, I think the living would envy the dead!"
 
2013-05-10 11:36:17 AM
AFHV has been around a long time. So Ow My Balls is also the past.
 
2013-05-10 11:42:47 AM

ColSanders: orclover: The Future of?  Have you seen TV lately?

Came here to say this.


Came here to say the first thing, then when I saw that, the second thing. Seeing as how both have already been said, going to watch TV. Excuse me please, Yakkity Sacks is on.

/owmyballs
 
2013-05-10 11:45:22 AM

Louisiana_Sitar_Club: Count_Crackula: First, congrats on your goldfarm, whatever the hell that is. :)
Thanks, It's a minecraft thing.


I figured as much.  I've deliberately avoided Minecraft for fear it would reduce me to a completely useless member of society.  Well, more useless than I already am.
 
2013-05-10 11:53:32 AM
That is what America's Funniest home Videos basically was. TV really could only improve from there.
 
2013-05-10 11:54:56 AM

Iamanevilcarrot: I can't imagine anything more boring than watching somebody else play a video game. What's the farking point when you can do it?


I'm actually watching a couple semi-blind Let's Play four player co-op Borderlands 2 series of videos.  This is a game I am currently addicted to, and it's fun to watch a group of four people play it for the first time and watch their reactions to the game (because it's a four player group, they are mostly reacting to the game and each other as opposed to merely talking to the camera).  I've also watched a few competetive Team Fortress 2 matches, which is basically like watching any sporting event.
 
2013-05-10 11:55:22 AM
TV hasn't been the same since Uncle Miltie went off the air, Then you started to see all this trash TV like "All In The Family" and "Chico and the Man." What is this world coming to?
 
2013-05-10 11:56:14 AM
Meh, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Modern Family, The Middle, and that's just sit coms.

I can dork out with Good Eats, How It's Made or How Do They Do It.  Thankfully new format Top Gear is still on BBC America regularly and the Science channel of all places carried An Idiot Abroad.  I don't get the movie channels but I know they put out some quality dramas.

Now I just need a new season of Dirty Jobs.  And a dedicated channel to No Reservations repeats 24/7.

Also watch a few Episodes of Burn Notice here and there, wish I had followed it from the start.  Psych is pretty good now and then as well.
 
2013-05-10 11:57:31 AM

NutWrench: If I could go back to any point in time for my entertainment, it would be right around 1985. The glory days of cable TV, when 3/4 of a program's hour wasn't either ads or promotions for other shows. My favorite show was USA's "Night Flight," a variety show that the network would start running around 9pm on Saturday nights and continue until 4-5am the next morning. My roommates and I would sometimes stay up all night.


Night Flight was AWESOME!
 
2013-05-10 11:58:47 AM
Hmmm.  How about "America's Scariest Dancers?"

/bails out of thread to contact an agent

//before anyone else comes up with the concept
 
2013-05-10 12:02:39 PM

NostroZ: Has anyone seen the Hulu exclusive The Online Gamer?
[ecx.images-amazon.com image 500x375]

Watching that show made me give up video games all together.
It really showed it as an addictive angry anti-social behavior, while attempting to be funny.
Not sure if it was the poor writing or that I actually knew people who acted somewhat like that, back in the internet cafe days.
So sad.


So now you watch TV instead?
 
2013-05-10 12:04:36 PM

Louisiana_Sitar_Club: And they love, love, love to watch videos of other gamers playing video games.

This I do not understand.  Keep in mind, I started with an Atari 2600 and have kept at it  to this very day.  I adore gaming.  However, I don't get why my 13 yr old will sit for hours watching youtube clips of some jackass riding a minecart through his gold farm.  p.s. I just finished building my goldfarm :D


I couldn't find the post from the guy mentioning they had a show in the 80s showing arcade games being played, so here is a decent place to mention: it was a game show based around getting timed high scores, and they played zoo keeper and spy hunter a lot. It was Star cade and was decent.

I don't know that I'd watch a walkthrough though.
 
2013-05-10 12:04:49 PM
Soooo... you're saying it hasn't happened yet?
farm5.staticflickr.com
 
2013-05-10 12:05:04 PM
Only stupid people watch television.
 
2013-05-10 12:05:24 PM

Egoy3k: NostroZ: Has anyone seen the Hulu exclusive The Online Gamer?
[ecx.images-amazon.com image 500x375]

Watching that show made me give up video games all together.
It really showed it as an addictive angry anti-social behavior, while attempting to be funny.
Not sure if it was the poor writing or that I actually knew people who acted somewhat like that, back in the internet cafe days.
So sad.

So now you watch TV instead?


No, isn't it obvious what I do?  Same as you... Fark
Then I'll watch TV shows online (via Hulu) or Netflix.
Or go outside, run, ride a bike, play some tennis... you know, learned how to get a life o_O
 
2013-05-10 12:05:46 PM
Good evening, America. Tonight we feature:
Anorexic beauty queens
Serial killer documentaries
Million dollar action scenes
Dry humping teenage magazines
Preaching pervert hypocrisy
Prescription drugs. Plastic Surgery
High school drama killing sprees
Arabian-Redneck conspiracies

/obscure?
 
2013-05-10 12:06:54 PM
 
2013-05-10 12:08:51 PM

mygirlsaysno: That's because the future of America is basically Idiocracy.
/less a movie, more dark prophecy everyday


Will it have electrolytes? *hand wave*
 
2013-05-10 12:09:25 PM

tarheel07: Good evening, America. Tonight we feature:
Anorexic beauty queens
Serial killer documentaries
Million dollar action scenes
Dry humping teenage magazines
Preaching pervert hypocrisy
Prescription drugs. Plastic Surgery
High school drama killing sprees
Arabian-Redneck conspiracies

/obscure?


Just turn up the volume, and yank off the knob. We've got it all, on UHF.
 
2013-05-10 12:10:31 PM

tarheel07: Good evening, America. Tonight we feature:
Anorexic beauty queens
Serial killer documentaries
Million dollar action scenes
Dry humping teenage magazines
Preaching pervert hypocrisy
Prescription drugs. Plastic Surgery
High school drama killing sprees
Arabian-Redneck conspiracies

/obscure?


Reminds me of Alex Freeland's music video "We Want Your Soul" lyrics:

Here's Programs, Here's Matters, Here's Britney, Here's Cola
Here's Pizza, Here's TV, Here's some Rock and some Rolla
Watch Commercials, more Commercials, watch Jerry, Not Oprah
Buy a Better Life from The Comfort of Your Sofa
Here's Popcorn, Here's Magazines, Here's Milkshake, Here's Blue Jeans
Here's Padded Bras, Here's Long Cars
Here's Football Shirts, Here's Baseball Caps
Here's Live Talk Shows, Here's Video Games, Here's Cola Lite, Here's Timberlake
Here's Filtertips, Here's Collagen Lips, Here's All Night Bars, Here's Plastic Hips

We Want Your Soul

Go back to bed America, Your Government is in Control Again
Here, Here's American Gladiators
Watch this, shut up

Go back to bed America,
Here's American Gladiators, Here's 56 channels of it
Watch these pituitary retards banging their farking skulls together
And congratulate you on living in the Land of Freedom
Here you are America
 
2013-05-10 12:12:09 PM

jaybeezey: AFHV has been around a long time. So Ow My Balls is also the past.


The Once and Future Groinattack

People forget mind fogging stuff like "Real People" back in the day also. Or god help us, variety shows.
 
2013-05-10 12:15:30 PM
I dunno...Solid Gold, Puttin' on the Hitz, the Newlywed Game, the Dating Game, Morton Downey Jr. All media "eras" have great and terrible things at all times. I don't like a lot of TV, but hey. And the Big Bang Theory is just how stupid people think smart people speak.
 
2013-05-10 12:25:52 PM
Ya'll are tripping. Wipeout is awesome. not as good as it's predecessor MXC. What I think is terrible is any reality show about some kind of crazy wives or brides. I don't really know how much of these shows are real and how much is scripted. The Mob Wives are some ugly, ugly human beings inside and out.
I do think these kind of shows are good tools for young men to learn what kind of women to avoid as mates.
 
2013-05-10 12:40:01 PM
TV is just ANOTHER thing ruined by unions.

When the writer's strike came around, producers came to the realization that, hey, paying 6 people to try to out-idiot each other is totally freaking cheap compared to a team of writers...

...and reality TV was born.

TLC was once the LEARNING channel, striving for par status with Discovery and the sciency shows on PBS, like Nova. Now they should just change the name to The Carney Channel.
 
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