It's been a few months now since I've sat down in front of the idiot-box for hours at end watching all the mindless drivel that is beamed out at us, the idiots. The quality of programming has really gone down over the years. To quote a cliché, they're going for quantity rather than quality.
All the channels seem to be showing the same inane shows, focusing on the same worthless issues and scheduling reruns of reruns. Every single channel has a hundred different soaps running during any given period ( the names of all of which inexplicably begin with 'K' ), and all of them seem to be running the same stories, with the same characters with different names. The obsession of the nation with 'Saas-Bahu' serials is baffling. Is the average housewife really that obtuse? Do these really appeal to her?
It is apparent right away that I don't really have a finger on the pulse on the middle Indian housewife, nor do I have frequent contact with any individuals of this demographic, so I don't have the faintest idea of what appeals to them. But if the TRP ratings are to be believed, these shows are doing extraordinarily well and have a healthy audience ( maybe not quite so healthy in intellectual matters though! ). It seems rather fantastic to me that anyone would watch such rubbish day in, day out.
Then there are the 24/7 news channels. They are a really desperate lot. The smallest event that has even the faintest scent of sensationalism will be blown out of proportion and hyped beyond belief. I've actually seen a 15 minute segment on how Mallika Sherawat would be filming her first ever soft-drink ad. Oh joy! Oh ecstasy! My exhilaration knows no bounds! More airtime to the already uber-excessively publicized osculator! Hooray for quality television!
And there was another remarkably cerebral piece about a ghost ( !! ) in Gujrat that would attack anyone who would be inconsiderate enough to sing Himesh Reshammiya's anthem, 'Jhalak Dikhlaja'. Though I think most people would probably have done the same at such an unprovoked and malicious attack on someone's aural senses and so, would have sympathized with the, umm, spirit of the attack ( :D ). I, personally, however, happen to like a few of Himesh's songs.
People have been asking me if I have a cable connection and why I don't get one. I've realized that rather than sitting like a lobotomized zombie in front of the television screen, I'd rather sit like a lobotomized zombie in front of the computer screen. But seriously, I'm better off without the TV. It gives me much more time and I can do something more interactive.
Also, if I did have TV, you wouldn't be reading this. And that I think, is the best reason not to get one, don't you think?