This should be a fun discussion!
TV is an interesting subject to me because it has changed so much in the last 10-20 years. The way we watch it. The types of shows that are popular. Growing up I remember watching shows like FRIENDS, Home Improvement (JTT anyone?), ER, Mad About You, Will & Grace. Scripted, acted shows.
I didn’t have cable growing up, so I never watched shows on Nickelodeon or other shows exclusively on cable. I definitely didn’t feel like that was a loss by any means. I don’t think anyone needs more TV in their life.
When TV comes up in conversation my husband and I often can’t relate. We don’t watch much TV. We don’t have cable anymore, but we do have an antenna so we get NBC, ABC, and CBS (that I mostly bought so I could watch the Olympics), and Netflix, and a friend who lets us use their HBO & cable logins online, which we don’t even use very often. We rarely turn our TV on unless we are watching a movie on Netflix.
However, I do think that there are a lot of great shows out there and I respect the art form of television. The concept, the writing, the acting, the sets, the wardrobe, etc. I respect it all. I like all of the in-depth reporting shows, Charlie Rose interviews, ESPN does great athlete stories, things like that. I’m a visual person, so I love learning visually and watching stories.
I especially like how the times are changing so the consumer can be more selective about how they watch TV (and not having to pay for 200 channels they never watch). For really busy people who have stressful jobs/lives I think watching a TV show you enjoy is a great way to give your mind a break.
With two of the only shows I actually watch on regular TV starting last week and this week, TV is on my mind. And neither are the type of scripted shows I watched growing up. They are in the reality show space. So I thought I’d out myself, and we can discuss.
Last week my friend tweeted about how she was excited about the new season of Project Runway and I was like WHAAAAAAAA!?! How did I miss that it was starting!?! Usually I have that marked on my calendar (seriously). It’s the 15th season of the show. Plus there’s been 5 seasons of Project Runway All Stars, so it’s really more like 20 seasons. I’ve watched almost all of them. I think I missed 1 or 2 seasons in the early days.
The fact that I love this show probably doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone. But I’m just not over it. I love it just as much now as I did the first season. I love the concept of — here’s a project, you have limited resources, you have drama queens surrounding you, you have one day, GO! MAKE IT WORK!
Yes there’s all of the drama, and people getting bitchy and emotional, and I know a lot of people love that part. It’s entertaining, but it’s not what I like about the show. I’m obsessed with watching people go through the creative process. That’s the draw for me. How they battle between their own style, what the judges will think, the time limit, having to use a fabric they hate or have never used, or designing for a client they don’t usually design for.
I think being put in all of those crazy situations is where creativity can really thrive. You can come up with things you otherwise never would have come up with unless you had to run into a hardware store, grab as much stuff as you can in 5 minutes and then make a dress out of it in 7 hours. The unconventional challenges are THE BEST.
There used to be another show called Work of Art that was basically the same concept as Project Runway, but it was with artists instead of fashion designers. It only lasted for two seasons and I was depressed it ended because obviously I was obsessed with it. Watching artists go through the creative process, gah I could watch that all day.
So there’s my No.1 TV obsession. Which I don’t find embarrassing. Although the next one, maybe a little.
I think this will probably shock some of you. It’s a bit out of character for me, except for the whole exotic location/adventure part of it. But here’s the story behind why I watch it. Oh, and it starts tonight and no they didn’t pay me to write this post.
A few years ago I was talking to this girl at a party in DC and 30 minutes before we left the party, she tells me that she and her husband were on the current season of Survivor. And I was like, wait WHAT!?! We’ve been talking for 3 hours and you’re JUST NOW TELLING ME YOU ARE ON A PRIMETIME TV SHOW THAT IS CURRENTLY AIRING!?!! I had so many questions.
They were a good-looking, smart, DC couple, both in the medical field that just didn’t fit the Survivor mold in my mind (I know, I was definitely stereotyping, not fair but true), and then she said, she’d been on two other seasons before this one! I was just floored. Who in their right mind goes on a show where you are almost naked, with basically no food, and you can’t sleep, and you have to do crazy obstacle courses, and just everything!
I think I watched a few episodes of the first season when it came out like 16 years ago. But it wasn’t until that party that I was like, that show is still on!?! And you are on it!?!
So I started watching the show out of curiosity.
It turned out to be weirdly fascinating. When you put people into these crazy situations it’s interesting to see what they do. I like watching people play mind games, lie to each other, manipulate each other. I also like to see how they handle the physicality of the show with little to no food and sleep, bug bites all over their body, etc. I like to see how far the body and mind can go.
I can admit that it’s not even a close second to Project Runway. If I miss an episode of Survivor I don’t care. But I thought it might be funny/surprising to you that I watch it. This season the theme is Millennials vs. Gen-X, so THAT should be interesting. Any Survivor fans out there?
WORTH A MENTION
I mean, House of Cards.
Sex and the City, oldie but goodie.
GIRLS, duh. Although at first there was a lot of naked sex and I was like, OK we get it.
Orange is the New Black — this show actually surprised me. I thought there was no way I would like it. I thought, how in the world could they make prison interesting enough? They did.
I’ve only seen a handful of episodes of The Good Wife, but I thought is was really good.
If you have Netflix, Peaky Blinders is a great show.
Veep is just so so good.
For whatever reason I never watched Homeland, then I was at home in Kansas City and watched 3 episodes with my mom and I was like OK NOW I HAVE TO BINGE WATCH ALL 5 SEASONS and I did in 3 weeks.
Probably surprisingly to many of you, I’ve never watched The Bachelor or The Bachelorette or even the spin offs. I mean, maybe one here and there while at a friend’s house or something, but I’ve never seen more than 10 episodes total and never more than a few of one season. It’s not that I don’t think it would be entertaining. I do. But I think I just don’t want to spend my time involved in it.
My friends in college were obsessed with Felicity. I wasn’t, but they were like obsessed obsessed. Anyone else?
Can everyone please please stop watching America’s Got Talent so that show will go off the air. It is one of the most annoying shows ever. I just can’t stand it. WHY IS IT STILL ON!?!
I don’t have time to get into every show ever, but these are the two shows I actually watch now, and a few others mentioned that came to mind quickly. BUT I want to hear all about what you watch. C’mon I know some of you are Housewives fans, and what’s that dance show with the little kids?
Dish your past and present favorite and not-so-favorite shows!
Top photo by Jeff Herr via Domino