I’ve often admitted to liking bad television, but not having cable is teaching me something about myself. It’s not that I liked bad TV, it was simply that I was conditioned to it.
I started pondering this while listening to the commentary on “Freaks and Geeks” and hearing one of the writers talking about how after he left “Dawson’s Creek” determined to never work in television again, he saw the “Freaks and Geeks” pilot and was lured back in. The conversation went on to discuss how the network didn’t understand character development, and that they like shows that allow viewers to tune in one week and know what’s happening without needing to have seen the previous show. This reminded me of the commentary on “The Wire” (yes, I’ve gotten in the habit of listening to the commentary, mostly while doing something else that doesn’t hold my full attention) where the creators talk about how they really require viewers to tune in week after week — to pick up a thread from the beginning of the season and tie it in a knot at the end. Continue reading