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Poll: What is the worst thing ever to happen to TV?

Karaoke contest shows (American Idol, etc) 17 (20%)
Home decorating shows (Trading Spaces, etc) 1 (1%)
Other "Reality" TV (Survivor, etc) 40 (47%)
MTV 8 (9%)
The Disney Channel 2 (2%)
Something even more horrific 18 (21%)
   Discussion: What is the worst thing ever to happen to TV?
Josh Woodward · 17 years, 9 months ago
The three reality-based ones are by far the worst crap that's ever seen the light of TV. I had to go with the "Other" category, though, since at least your karaoke contests feature some limited amount of talent and the home decorating shows at least.. well, they don't throw 12 attractive people on a desert island for some cheeky fun.
Andrea Krause Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I went with "Other" to encompass things like Jackass and The Tom Green Show and Crank Yankers and that crap in general. (I know, the first two aren't on anymore, but it's the level they pander to that I detest. :) )

Annika Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I think Jackass is still on. I don't watch it, I just see it on the listings, so it might be reruns.
Josh Woodward Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I likes me some Crank Yankers!

Spoonie Luv from Up Above rocks :)
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
The only good thing about that show is that FOW did the theme song.
Even that's not enough to make it not suck, though.
(I'm biased, though, I hate prank call stuff...)
Andrea Krause Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

I don't know why, but I have a real discomfort with humor that's centered on, well, people's discomfort. It just really hits me in a bad way. Crank calls, scare tactics, candid camera. When they're fairly benign (as candid camera can be) it's not so bad but some of those shows just go soooo far trying to make people look like idiots. And...I just don't like the idea of trying to make people look like idiots. Maybe it's the afraid-people-are-laughing-at-me hangups I have. I have no problem with home video shows (people accidentally looking stupid), it's the cruelty behind the others I mentioned that gets to me.


Beth Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I really have to agree with all that, especially in regards to Crank Yankers. I can't even watch it, because it makes me feel bad. Not that I'd watch it anyway. {g} Now if people want to purposely look stupid, that's another story from being tricked into it.  {g}
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Yeah, I agree completely, Andrea. They don't make me laugh, they make me feel bad for the butt of the joke, and angry at the person playing the "prank".

It's cruel.
Josh Woodward Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
But the ones that cross the line are unfortunately the funniest. Like the one where the dad called a Bath & Body Works to make his 10 year old son confess that he took a bar of their soap and put it up his.. uh... dark region. And then returned it to the shelf. And they're desparately trying to get him to remember where it was, and what kind of soap. They thought they were going to have to throw every bar of soap out.

*grins* Yeah, maybe you're right.. it is a little evil :)
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
As someone who works in a call center, it's freakin obnoxious and rude. I'd sue the hell out of them if I was ever aired in one of those... I'm not a litigious person, but I hope the assholes who make that show get sued so bad that they're out on the street begging for money. THAT will be funny.
Talcott Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
That's why they call in Nevada. It's one of the few states where you only need concent from one party to record the calls.
(no, I have no idea where I learned this. useless trivia to the rescue I suppose)
goovie is married! · 17 years, 9 months ago
i happen to love the disney channel. yay for lizzie maguire, even stevens, and kim possible...and all their supercute stars. :)
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Yeah...... I like it too..... *hangs head sheepishly* hehe
Josh Woodward Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Disney is evil. Very evil.
J. Andrew World Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Disney=Evil, some of Disney's shows, not so evil.  Like Gargoyles!  It was a wonderful show.  Up until the third season, where it went to ABC and they ruigned the show.  Disney and ABC is evil, I mean after all they did put Bob Sagat, *AND* the Olsen Twins on the same show!
ChrisChin is Getting Old Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

Yes, ABC has had its run of really bad shows (Two Guys, a Girl, and A Pizza Place, anyone?), but it does air the kick-ass Alias and used to show Sports Night, so I give it some credit.  However, the network didn't really support Sports Night (and cancelled it after two seasons) and it seemed to had renewed Alias for a third season at the near last minute, so it seems that ABC just really doesn't care about the quality scripted shows that they air or give them time to build an audience.  Instead they promote the hell out of crappy reality shows second only to FOX. Sigh, okay, nevermind ABC is evil with one or two gems....I mean did anyone see the season finale for Alias?!?! 

Annika Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

I love Disney Channel. My sister and I used to sit around after work and zone out in front of the TV, we had our line up of The Nanny, News Radio, Frasier, than we'd flip to the Disney channel and watch some silly preteen movie. 

iPauley Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Only Disney I've seen recently is Playhouse Disney, watching "The Wiggles" or "Bear In The Big Blue House" with a 2-year-old. :-P

Too bad her family moved to South Dakota.

-- Pauley
Annika · 17 years, 9 months ago
I voted MTV. I think MTV was a great idea in the beginning, but has turned to sh*t. Although, I have to say, I'm starting to get into it again, because of shows like Punked and True Life. So this opinion my change.
John J. Ryan Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Video killed the radio star.  Simply put.  That is what MTV has done.  Only until now have people started to rebel against MTV once they start high school, and like, * gasp *, non-MTV backed artists!!!!
Annika Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Perhaps where you live, not here, at all.
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
star??? oh! I was wondering all this time what a "radio store" was. Figured it was just, like, one of those stores where they just sell top 40 crap.
Annika Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Heh. Did you really? For years I thought Elton John was saying "Electric boobs, a mohair suit"
Andrea Krause Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I was singing that getting out of the car a couple of weeks ago and just as I got to that part (Which I used to think was boobs also) I got shocked/zapped by my car on my boob. :)
John J. Ryan Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

oO 'Cuse me while I kiss this guy. Oo


nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
oO And the girls with colitis go by... Oo

And I actually DID used to think it was, "Big ol' Jeb had a light on".

Bel kjfdxcvuyjh8 Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I saw that Just For Laughs too. I love that show, and Just For Laughs Gags too.

Didn't the guy say "bingo" Jed?
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I dunno... what's "Just for Laughs"?
Bel kjfdxcvuyjh8 Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Wasn't it a stand-up comedy act at the Montreal comedy festival Just For Laughs? It's on TV. Well actually, I see it on CBC, so I don't know how many other channels it's on.

*loves his CBC*
Shelly Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
ironic trivia:

the video for 'video killed the radio star' was the first thing to ever air on MTV.

were they trying to TELL us something??? :)
George E. Nowik Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

have you ever seen the video for that song?  it's a wonder that video didn't kill the video star...

 -= george =-

Zach · 17 years, 9 months ago
almost everything on tv nowadays is horrific.
Doktor Pepski, kommie · 17 years, 9 months ago
It used to be mtv. Music all the time, The way you want it. Videos up the wazzo! I had cable til 1995, and it rarely had anything but cable, save a few shows. I decided to get cable back in 1999, and what the hell? It's not mtv any more! They oughta just change the channel's name to Pop Culture television, I could be wrong though *shrugs*
Doktor Pepski, kommie · 17 years, 9 months ago
as if Mtv isn't bad enough, The Tom Green show IS coming back in June with new episodes, i don't know if it will be a new format, but it is (whatthe USA today calls ) a talk show. oh oh.
emilie is CRANKY · 17 years, 9 months ago
couldn't decide whether i hated bad pop contests or reality tv more. :D popstars and pop idol were really appalling, but i equally dislike 'help i'm a celebrity get me out of here' or whatever it's called, which is possibly the worsat show on tv at the moment with the exception of 'reborn in the usa'. i can't stand those types of shows where they always put in a couple of really old forgotten-about celebs and try to get them back into showbiz, and it just doesn't work. it's a really tacky concept.
Will work for anime · 17 years, 9 months ago
there should be a option for "All of the Above"
· 17 years, 9 months ago

I don't know about you...but I can't STAND the shopping shows...

I had to live through the spending craze of the 80's watching people end up with all sorts of stuff they didn't need...

wait...that's still happening? my lord!

I also remember the whole Jim and Tammy Baker salad days...I think "that" was one of the worst things to happen to TV...and the whole "court on TV" stuff! BORING!


Nathan Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

People bought things they didn't need from home shopping channels because they WANTED to.  Are you also opposed to online shopping?

As for infomercials, they're kind of fun just because they're so ridiculous.

Annika Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

If I can't sleep, I watch infomercials. I love infomercials! There are so many things that are useless to me, but are so interesting to watch. I don't remember what it's called, but I love that Set it and forget it, one, I'll watch that anytime it's on. The Rotato was pretty cool, although my mom bought one from the As Seen On Tv store, and said it didn't work very well. The fat grilling machine was kinda neat to watch, although George Foreman kind of irritates me. Then there are all those quick work out video's and machines that you just have to have! I think my all time best infomercial moment, was when I was living in Kenmore, in an apt. and my brother and I were watching this infomercial about a weed remover tool, and Ben says "I should order that! You know how much we could do with it?!" Neither of us thought about the fact that we didn't have a yard, we had a parking lot, and the tool would be of no use to us at all, until he started giving them his card number, at which point he goes "umm.. never mind." and hangs up. Looks over at me and flushed a little and said "Yeh, I guess maybe I need an infomercial break." I remember when Oxy-clean first came on the market, it was unbelivable!!! How did that water become so clean?!! Amazing.

J. Andrew World · 17 years, 9 months ago
I hate survivor.  I hate those kind of shows.  It's so dumb, in the state of the world is in right now I want to excape from reality, why watch it.  To top it off, those shows are discusting, and most people who are really into them are discusting.  Lets not forget how stupid people are who watch it.  I mean it's like watching High School as a reality TV, I mean hello, some of us have moved on to more sophisticated things!
renita Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
wow. I'm not fond of them either.

but. hello pretension.
Bel kjfdxcvuyjh8 · 17 years, 9 months ago
Law&Order:SVU. That is the worst shit I've ever seen.

Though I don't mind the original one and I like CI. Strange.
George E. Nowik · 17 years, 9 months ago


worst.  evar.

 -= george =-

Beth · 17 years, 9 months ago

I had to choose the "other" category, although I really do hate what MTV has become. My largest complaint with MTV is not that they show crappy videos (and boy do they), it's that more often than not, you can turn it on and not see music at all. Bad music is better than Road Rules or Jackass or whathaveyou.

As for the whole reality TV thing, while I really don't tune in to many (any?) of those, I don't actively have a problem with them. Reality TV is just a genre, and I assure you it won't be around forever. By the late 50s, there were more westerns on TV than any other kind of show. I'm sure plenty of people weren't interested in those, either. TV genres go in and out of favor. It's not bad. In the early 80s sitcoms were nearly dead, but The Cosby Show had a huge part in turning that around.

Right now, I think my biggest complaint is about shows like Friends. I think it contains bad messages. {g}

no one · 17 years, 9 months ago
Phawh. The best remedy for "the worst thing ever to happen to TV" is the "Off" button. Vote with your remote controls!
nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Naw, the best remedy is to watch good stuff. Me, I tend to watch TLC, Discovery, The History Channel (THC.. heheh), and HGTV mostly.
John J. Ryan Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I agree there.  It's why I don't watch much television any more save for a few shows. It's so dumb, it's like watching paint dry.  It doesn't stimulant minds anymore, just makes them atropy.
Talcott Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

It all depends on the combination of person and show.
The infomertials even can make some people think, or at least be a form of bonding (shark sweeper anyone?)
Sure, TV can be mind-numbing, but it's all about how the viewer is taking things in. I can honestly say I've learned things from some of the most inane shows, and while I wouldn't watch them often, don't regret seeing them.
My problem with the reality wave is the way it's killing good scripted shows. Not only are fewer being made, but the good/unique ones aren't given time to grow into their own. There's room for both Survivor and Greg The Bunny...the execs just need to figure that out.


Nathan Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
I don't watch much TV, but to say TV in general is "mind-numbing" is like saying the same thing about books, music, video games, the Internet, etc.  Like any medium, there's some good stuff and some crap, and it's up to the individual to decide which is which.
Beth Back · 17 years, 9 months ago

That's a very good point, Nathan Mulac DeHoff.

I must say that I love all kinds of media. But if that were not so, I would not have a degree in communication with a specialization in radio/TV/film. I will, however, never find work.

Michael (foof) Maki · 17 years, 9 months ago
is proof positive that this society is on its way out. :-)
Andrea Krause · 17 years, 9 months ago
You know, all we're gabbing about is the worst things to happen to our lives by way of the TV. Truly, the question asks what's the worst thing that ever happened TO TV. Do we not care about the TV's perspective? Are we so self-absorbed that we don't even turn to that poor box and ASK?

Maybe the worst thing to happen to it was that time you threw up on its screen during that big party.

Maybe it goes through severe identity crises when we flip-flip-flip-flip-flip-flip.

Maybe it feels hurt and betrayed when we blame it for this week's reality show results.

Maybe...just maybe...the worst thing ever to happen to our TVs

nate... Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Whoa man.... pass the bong.

Bel kjfdxcvuyjh8 Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Yeah...whatever you're on, I want some. Or do I?
no one Back · 17 years, 9 months ago
Thats the angle I initially understood the question from, Andrea, and remembered how I watched and listened to a past prime minister of ours sprout his economic rationalist line. I snapped. Before I could do anything about it, me left arm reached for a boot I had just taken off and threw it at the visage leering at me from the screen. The picture tube imploded. And, sob, we didn't even give the tv a proper burial.

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