the rustic wilds

Whoops: when will I learn there is no internet at my mother's house?

I'm back with the family this weekend, for birthdays and bon voyages, and I was rather counting on snatching a quiet moment to check and answer my email and update my website. But how quickly we forget, that the internet here is reliant upon mobile phone signals, and thus vanishes whenever more than one person is using a mobile phone in the vicinity. Saturday is a very mobile-phone-intensive day, as are any hours out of the 9-5 grind.

One thing my mother's house does have, that mine does not, however is TV. And do you know what's on TV on Saturday evenings round these parts? Seven gazillion hours1 of The Simpsons episodes.

Sometime during the last week, I was chatting to work colleagues about TV episodes, and The Simpsons came up. And I said that I really liked the show, but had gotten a little complacent over it, because there just seemed so much of it on, and I never seemed to catch any new episodes. But you know what? I think I have to take it back, because I sat through around three hours of it yesterday afternoon, chuckling all the while. And nary a previously-viewed episode among the bunch (which probably has more to do with my not having a TV recently than the tv station's broadcasting policy). (Also, sitting through three consecutive hours of the one show may have had something to do with my having been up since 04:30, and running on only 4 hours sleep, and thus in possession of a brain with the consistency of stewed apple by the early evening.)

All of which got me to thinking about the delicate balance between "more" and "too much" of a good thing.

It's a good show. People are inevitably going to want more of it, which is why, in addition to continuing to air new episodes, tv stations will air reruns — to slake our thirst while we endure the delays inherent in the creative creation (vs consumption) process, but also to catch new audience members. How much is too much, however? How often can you air and re-air and re-air a single show before you've worn it away? How much of your broadcast schedule can you give over to rehashed content before you turn the audience away, because they're tired of never catching new content and come to associate a new show only with tired, pre-digested material because that's all they ever seem to catch on the airwaves?

  1. okay, so this may be a slight exaggeration. maybe. []

4 thoughts on “the rustic wilds

  1. I agree re: The Simpsons. Probably my favourite tv show of all time, but I rarely tune in to it. Channel Ten has been notoriously bad at promoting/making us aware of when new episodes are on, often mixing them with old ones. These days I watch it whenever I'm bored or need cheering up, but I dont make a point of tuning in.

  2. Exactly! I was quite into House for a while, but then Ch. 10 started airing one new episode followed by repeats for the next 3 or 4 weeks. Made the season impossibly disjointed. I simply couldn't stay interested.

  3. I feel exactly the same way about David Eddings. Except there, even the new content feels like re-runs.

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