Things I Don’t Like About Television, Episode 33: Sleazy Talk Shows

Talk shows are a mainstay in television programming. Of the American talks shows I have seen and heard of, there are too many that are watered down and boring. Among all shows, there are three I would really call trashy. These sleazy talk shows all listed below. There are some things these programs have in common, including the hosts’ exuberance, the quality of guests, the audience, and the effect the shows have on the common viewers.

The Jerry Springer Show

sleazy talk shows, jerry springer, the jerry springer show

When I talk about sleaze on American television, this may be one of the first if not the first shows that come to mind.

Going from video tape from an early episode of this show, I would say that it was in between today’s Steve Wilkos and Bill Cunningham. Springer might have on some preteens or a couple of “normal” people with a complaint might appear on the show to hash out some problems. It was still pretty stupid, namely because of the questions that Springer would ask his guests, but not at the low level it is today.

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A Quick Blog Update (Write Anything Wednesday)

I’m a little late with this Write Anything Wednesday, but I do have something to report. Here’s a quick blog update.

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Things I Don’t Like About Television, Episode 32: Self-Image Issues

Eventually, we all look at the messages television programs send. Not only do we look for hints of morals and values, but the personal messages that deliberately or inadvertently, discretely or conspicuously sent to viewers by the writers, producers, and executives. Preeminently, viewers are bombarded with the issue of self-image and more specifically, body image on a daily basis.

I can list three basic ways television programs affect viewers’ body and self-image with the last perhaps being the most dangerous. I’m just gonna be pretty blunt here. If this offends anyone, so be it.

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Famous Sayings: #7 — ‘Crying Over Spilt Milk’

April 24, 2016

There’s no use crying over spilt milk.

Greetings! As I said last Sunday, I generally have a plan for the idioms and phrases I choose to analyze every week. That doesn’t mean I can’t change plans every now and again. It turns out this is such a Sunday.

Why ‘Spilt Milk’?

On Thursday, I gained a new follower and my curiosity took me to her blog. One post that stood out to me was “Pick up the broken pieces.” In her post sparkyjen reblogged a post of the same name. That post was written another one of my followers, Ngobesing Romanus. (I was thinking of doing a reblog of the same post, but it would be better to ask permission and the post would have gone out immediate and bore the name of Ngobesing Romanus’ post.) Anyway, in her post, sparkyjen cited a familiar phrase, “Don’t cry over spilled milk.”

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Things I Don’t Like about Television, Episode 31: Competition Shows

Before we began talking about competition shows, I must say that this is a momentous occasion. I have just published my 100th post on WordPress!


This started out as an effort to re-post old thoughts before my first blog was lost (and that is still a possibility), but it has grown bigger than I could have imagined in August 2015. I still want to grow this blog even more. For that I would need help from the blogging community, while making my own strides. Thanks to everyone who has read my posts and even more to those who have chosen to follow this blog.

Back to my scheduled programming…

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Two Somber Anniversaries (Write Anything Wednesday)

For this Write Anything Wednesday, I’d thought I would talk about two somber anniversaries. One date seems like it takes forever to come and the other just sneaks up on me.

April 19 and April 20th are in fact two somber anniversaries in American history. April 19, 2016 was the 21st anniversary of the Oklahoma City Bombings. When I started this post, the date was April 20, 2016. This date holds significance because it is the 17th anniversary of the Columbine School Shootings. I remember both days, actually, although I was too young to truly understand the magnitude of either, really.

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Things I Don’t Like About Television, Episode 30: Learning on the Job

It’s very easy to tell when someone on TV is learning on the job. It’s often very painful to watch.

What do I mean by “learning on the job”? It’s quite simple. There are two basic scenarios at play: In one, a child or young adult actor is cutting their teeth on camera. In the other, a former athlete is transitioning to become an analyst (for their respective sport). I will take note of some improvements in either case, though it is still difficult to watch in the meantime.

Acting Is for Beginners

Once in a blue moon, you will come across a wonderful child actor who appears to have his/her priorities in order. This kid is very professional and you will hear wonderful things about him/her by older co-stars, especially well-known veterans in the entertainment industry. (Mara Wilson, Dakota Fanning, and Abigail Breslin quickly come to mind. So does Jonathan Jackson, who started acting when he was about 11 years old.)

Most other kids are naturally rough out of the gate. This is part of the reason why young adults are hired to play teenagers. Chances are, those older actors have been working hard at their craft for at least five years; it shows in the way they are able to deliver their lines and successfully convey emotion.

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Famous Sayings: #6 — ‘Nothing Is Certain Except…’

April 17, 2016

Nothing is certain except death and taxes.

nothing is certain, death and taxes, except death and taxes, Benjamin Franklin
Joseph Duplessis [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Before I delve into this topic I need to point out my mistake last week. Off-topic, but I forgot to post Episode 29 of my “Things I Don’t Like about Television” series. I went back and uploaded the post on Friday (and back-dated it), so please give it a read.

Now, let me tell you this: I think of the sayings I want to use on my own and I try to be timely with them. I’m already thinking weeks ahead. For example, I’m already thinking of a post for this Christmas. And, oh boy, is this post timely. I was already thinking about Tax Day in the United States (which is tomorrow), but it turns out that April 17th is the anniversary of Benjamin Franklin’s death. Considering his quote, what a coincidence that is…

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Things I Don’t Like About Television, Episode 29: Your Age Is Showing

There are a few concerns I have when it comes to age and television (and movies). In particular, I hate it when it is clear that an actor is too old for a role, because sometimes, it is far too obvious that a twenty-something is playing a 15-year-old. It just looks bad when some 28-year-old in heavy makeup is playing the most popular boy in school or a woman who is obviously over 25 is playing a high-achieving class president.

It might not have been as obvious [to younger viewers] when Beverly Hills 90210 first aired but it was shocking to first find out some of the actors’ ages. (I’ll let you decide what you think about Gabrielle Carteris’ role as “Andrea,” since she was the oldest to play a high-schooler on the show starting at age 29.)

However, it became clear that young adults would be cast in these roles. There would be many shows aimed at teens, including Dawson’s Creek, and most of the cast would be played by actors already in their twenties. Why? Many of these actors have more range than most teens do and are better prepared to deal with heavier material. Does it still bother me? Of course it does.

Here are a few glaring examples:

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My List (Write Anything Wednesday)

For this Write Anything Wednesday, I don’t have much to say. I will just use this time to quickly address something. This is not an easy subject to address and it might be uncomfortable for those who read this, but I need to get this off my chest.

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