The Television Has Been Revolutionised


Viikko 52


Motion: THB that TV does not cater for the over-40-set and should make atonement for that, enabling their TV viewing pleasure
Role: Secretary (opp.)
Date: Apr 5th, 2013

It has been said that TV today is a mélange of two things: reality-TV and lightweight talkshows, both of which irritate the hell out of the mature viewer. I agree with the latter but not with the former. TV today is better than ever, EVER! In the past, TV was horrible both visually and substantially (in terms of its contents). Today, TV is great.

The latest decade when TV was horrible was the 1990s. Back then, TV had detached itself from the raucous but vacuous 80’s, but had not yet arrived at the intelligent but raw 00’s. Shows such as Ally McBeal, Picket Fences, Twin Peaks, Melrose Place, Beverly Hills 90210 and Seinfeld dominated the supply back then but represented really only a pratfall. That was a semi-vacuous time when TV had not yet found its true calling and voice.

Today I can enumerate saddlebagfuls of TV shows that make the cut and grade even on Finnish TV. As always, most of the good stuff comes from across the pond (from North America), so therefore I mentioned so many of American shows in the earlier list. But the bar has been raised in Europe as well. In Britain, good shows include ”Doc Martin”, ”Fresh Meat”, ”Pulling”, ”Shameless”, ”Skins” and ”Harry & Paul”. In Finland, surprisingly the Swedish-speaking minority produce at least 2 hours of quality programming every week usually in the form of different talkshows and short documentaries. They are also adept at short fictionalized dramatisations. And while I’m at it, in Sweden…. the machine just churns out world-class fiction – and the world buys.

These are just a few countries whose shows would also definitely entertain a mature viewer with their mature content. Namely, these programs are not for teenage viewers; you would notice it instantly on screening the former to a junior high-school audience. They would zone out instantly and immediately, just the way they desert malls that choose to play classical music through the loudspeakers. In conclusion, let me say that a good chunk of today’s TV is expressly meant for the over-40-set that was mentioned in the motion of this debate.

I do understand that there are also bad programs on TV. Generally speaking, public-service channels/stations fail, when they try to create raucous entertainment, and commercial players fail, when they try to create serious programming. As examples of well-meaning BUT misconceived concepts, I can mention ”Strada”, ”Puoli seitsemän”, ”Kaken pesula”, ”Prisma studio”, ”Kuningaskuluttaja”, ”Mansikkapaikka” and ”Arka paikka”. These ”therapy talks” or ”cultural mix-tapes” or ”viewer’s digests” bring nothing to the table either for the hare-brained surface-consumer or the high-brow viewer. They are useless.

Older people should learn to surf the channel jungle adeptly, now that most of them are on the brink of retirement. If they’ve learnt to judge and juggle many a thing on the job, switching between channels should be a piece of cake. I don’t think we can reinvent a ”safe” or simpler TV for the older set.

TV in our time now is so much better than what it was in seniors’ youth, when Archie Bunker roamed freely and was a bigot about everything that caught his eye. If the old won’t accept this, the internet with its endless supply of this and that is the senior citizens’ only choice left. Meanwhile, Young Ones can lean back and relearn the good old pastime of watching immersive TV.

Puheen kesto: 5 min 15 sek
Arvio: * * * * ½. Aihe on sellainen, että siitä osaa jokainen jotain sanoa ja on jonkin sortin ”asiantuntija”. Ainakin samalla mitalla kuin kolumnissa ”Friman katsoo TV:tä” (joka käsittelee useimmiten pelkkää hömppää). Pituus osuu ihan sweet spottiin ja argumentointi on terävää. Haluaisin itse kuulla tämän jonkun toisen suusta.



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