Writer’s Strike: best thing ever for Reality TV

The writer’s strike resulted in “Black Monday” last week during which the major studios fired many of the best writers, producers, etc. in the entertainment industry. I don’t really watch public television, but I do purchase the shows I like, via iTunes, and the selection has been pretty slim and the episodes pretty strangely spaced and noticeably off since the strike ensued.

I don’t like it. I don’t like it because it messes with my fun, but primarily I don’t like it because this guarantees an abundance of default consumption of the stupidest stuff to ever hit the tube: Reality TV.

How does reality TV suck? Let me count the ways…

Nah, it would take too long and I’m not sure I can count that high — life is short. The entertainment abominations like “My Big Redneck Wedding” and other atrocities will now invade the American household day in and day out. Yes, people could shut off the TV, but they won’t. It’s a habit. A bad one.

And the mind-rotting effects of these things will probably been seen in generations to come. It worries me. When will the “survivor” type shows not be enough? When will it become the equivalent of The Running Man — or some similar horrific concoction once relegated to the science fiction realm? (After all, with Homeland Security, the new national ID, survey cameras and gps cell phones, we already live in the beginnings of Orwell’s 1984 — just a couple decades later than he predicted.)

I hate the condition of the status quo. I hate that we are trading in the writing caliber of such great examples of Olympian writing — shows like “Gilmore Girls” and “West Wing” for a line-up that consists only of titles like “Celebrity Rehab” and “Pimp my Ride” and shows the revolve around the catfights between playboy bunnies or the adult lives of washed-up child stars from “Happy Days” and “The Brady Bunch.” Who cares?

Maybe with the decline in the calibre of magazine writing (and the new-found fascination with the pop-teen, drug-addicted, lousy mothering, who’s-bedding-whom information that greets me in increasing volume every time I go to the grocery store) I should have been expecting this. Somehow I wasn’t.

And what bugs me most? Calling this decision an “act of God” through the “force majeure” clause. I’m not a terribly religious person, but I object to anyone attributing this decline to a higher power. This is all pretty low-class if you ask me.

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