Tamara Miller: Im protesting the TV writers
The Writers Guild of America is on strike and this hits us Americans right at home. Already, studios are announcing that some of our favorite shows will immediately go into repeats. Tune in tonight for last weeks Daily Show with Jon Stewart or watch Jay Leno make fun of Sen. Larry Craig back in August. Those who follow the TV industry speculate that the strike likely means that a mid-season Heros spin-off, Heros: Origins will be canceled. All of the 27 Law & Order shows are only half-written at this point. By January, youll have to get your crime and punishment fix by turning into the TV news. Im sure this is a travesty for most people I know, but I frankly couldnt care less. Its not that we dont own a TV we do. And its not like Im one of those holier-than-thou, anti-TV watchers who likes to brag about how its been months months! since I last turned on the tube. Im not proud that I have no opinion about what happened at the end of last weeks episode of House and I dont take a special pleasure in not knowing what my co-workers are talking about when they decide to rehash the latest developments on Lost.Every night, my husband and I turn on the TV and settle into our respective places on the couch for a little post-work decompression time. Id guess that we average about one to two hours a night in front of the TV, more on the weekends. But I have little memory of what Ive watched, because most of it, I swear, is truly awful. There are only three things I watch loyally TLCs What Not to Wear (because I really want to be on the show), Kansas Jayhawks mens basketball games (because they are the greatest basketball team ever) and NBCs Friday Night Lights (because its pretty much the only show on network television that takes place in a town like the town I grew up in, i.e., not New York City.)The writers strike could deprive me of the second half of the season of Friday Night Lights but Hollywood cant get its claws into my KU basketball games. You cant invent that kind of drama.And I dont think theyve made any new episodes of What Not To Wear in months. Ive been watching the same dowdy housewife turn into a glamorous hottie over and over again. Its really not any more monotonous than watching the recycled plots on new episodes of ER, Greys Anatomy, The Practice or any other doctor show where everyone sleeps with their co-workers. I dont really have an opinion on the Hollywood writers strike, on the business of the entertainment industry, or on whether $200,000 is a reasonable average wage for a script writer when the guys in the window office pull in millions. All I know is that I cant stand most of whats on TV right now, and now that all the writers are on strike, its probably going to get worse. Expect to see a whole new slew of crappy reality shows running in the time slot of your favorite show. And just like most primetime shows, which are just franchises of existing prime time shows, well see reality show spin-offs. Instead of just the miserable Wife Swamp well get Job Swap, where we can watch janitors spend a week running some Fortune 500 company while the companys CEO cleans toilets in Ralph Lauren work-out clothes. A compliment to Kid Nation could be Geriatric Nation. You wouldnt even have to gather up a bunch of old people and ship them off to some abandoned ranch; just put some cameras in a Florida retirement community and wait for the action to unfold. Maybe its time to bump up our Netflix subscription. Opinion/Projects Editor Tamara Miller can be reached at 748-2936, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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