I Guess I'm a Cylon*

Listen to this 'Talk of the Nation' topic

Last week, the New York Times reported on a surprising (to them) new development. TV is good. It's really good. It's intellectual, it's surprising, it's filled with hidden gems, and great big flashy cubic zirconia type guilty pleasures. This summer, there was something I wanted to watch every night (which was sort of a bummer because I really like to read, too). I have delivered passionate speeches about the virtues of Battlestar Galactica and of Friday Night Lights. The Television Wars have begun, and it's time to claim a side, people (and there are a thousand sides). You are what you watch — what are you watching?

*I would want to be the Sharon model. For sure.

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My favorite show of the last few years, without a doubt, has been The Wire. I was somewhat skeptical about its deliberate pacing during the first season, but from season two onwards I was hooked. And the last season was one of the best seasons of any show I've ever seen on TV, period. So I'm really bummed that the next season will be the last one for the show. But it should be an interesting one; like all seasons of the Wire, it'll focus on a particular institution, and this time around it'll be the media.

Other shows I watch consistently:

The Shield. For a couple of years it looked like it was faltering but the last couple of seasons have been amazing. It's also planning to wrap up after the upcoming season, so I'll be in search of another corrupt cop show.

The Tudors. A pleasant surprise, though I was kinda hoping season one would have encompassed the rise _and_ fall of Anne Boleyn rather than just her rise.

The Sopranos. Had to keep watching it, though I spent the last three seasons privately grumbling that it was just going through the motions and had lost its edge.

Deadwood. Season One was nearly perfect. After that, not so perfect, but still worth watching - until that last episode, at least. Still can't believe they killed it in favor of that dude from Cincinnati.

Firefly. Please don't remind me it was only on air for one season, five years ago to boot. I still can't get enough of this show on DVD. I'll be in my bunk.

Shows I _used_ to watch: NUMB3RS, House, Law & Order. All three of them have edged toward mediocrity over the last couple of seasons, for my money, at least. As Stringer Bell once said, they're basically like a 40 degree day.

Sent by andy carvin | 3:03 PM | 10-1-2007

I activate and de-activate my satellite just to watch football, but there's always that extra time---in which I've become addicted to HBO. The Wire, and this past year Big Love. Good Stuff!

Sent by Christie Young | 3:21 PM | 10-1-2007

I'd like to consider the person who sniffs & says "only news & PBS"

The news is a mere amplifier for the administration and it's corporate constituency. Don't feel so smug unless you are able to QUESTION EVERY STORY

Sent by Steve | 3:33 PM | 10-1-2007

Television is driven by dollars. Even though I love smart television like west wing and weeds and other terriffically written shows, thinking is not what the american people are looking for in television. THey are looking for solace, thoughtless, mindless entertainment that salves their mind with happy, exciting, and easily digestible storylines. It's not about whats best its always about what sells.

Sent by Robert | 3:57 PM | 10-1-2007

I used to be an avid watcher of TV but now I can no longer bear to watch it. TV makes me feel like I need a bath. TV is a desperate and dying intrusion that seeks people in their homes to pimp wares. I refuse to accept it any longer. To hear an NPR program that makes TV sound good is absurd!

Sent by Patrick R. | 11:23 PM | 10-1-2007

I'm not sure what the relevance of this topic is to anyone. But allow me to put my vote in for Discovery chan., Firefly and The Daily Show. I also like Battlestar but it has too much drama.

Sent by Michael | 10:45 AM | 10-2-2007

My tv died a few years ago, and I decided not to replace it. I don't really miss watching it, my only problem is people at work (or in general) look at me funny when I tell them I don't have a tv.

Sent by mildy | 2:25 PM | 10-2-2007

The dramas that I thoroughly enjoy are 'Rescue Me' and 'Law & Order: SVU'. As far as comedy I will always choose 'Scrubs'(I have the first 4 seasons on DVD), 'Simpsons', and Family Guy'. I think these programs are funny, well-written, and clever. The canned laughter tracks on sitcoms drive me crazy. I also enjoy A&E programs such as 'American Justice' and 'Cold Case Files'.

Sent by Kristine | 3:39 PM | 10-2-2007

Um, in the part where the guests were responding to an African American man talking about how there aren't enough shows that speak to him, did Matt Roush really refer to the Korean characters (played by a Korean actress and a Korean American actor) as "Japanese," just as he's talking about diversity on t.v.? :(

Sent by Jason | 7:18 PM | 10-2-2007