Why do I watch bad TV shows and movies? It’s kinda like asking ‘why do you drink terrible wine?’ – except it’s not at all. The answer to the latter question could be simple – ‘because it’s cheap’ – however living close to some of the best wine regions means this is no excuse. My excuse is usually that it was left at our house. It might have been open a while, lost its taste, on top of the fact that it was a bad drop to begin with and yet I’ll still drink it, because I like feeling giddy. I’m doing it right now, in fact. This glass of wine is deplorable – it’s been poured from a bottle of red that’s been open a month. I was using it for cooking and just kind of left it there. Today, on a relaxing Saturday afternoon, my gaze fell upon the wine and I though, well, ‘waste not want not’.
As I wrote the above, I realised there is actually a parallel between bad wine and bad viewing. The wine will get you giddy but the viewing will at least make you feel something – even if it is just the anger at the fact that something so terrible could in fact make its way to a screen near you. As I write this, and drink the terrible wine, I am watching a fine example of this, but I guess that means I should perhaps explain what I mean by bad – because if it really was ‘bad’ then why would I be watching it?!
I mean shitty TV shows – mostly aimed at women and lonely people; the ‘reality shows’ with unrealistic scenarios involving pressurised situations – usually in a kitchen or on a date with a ‘bachelor’ – (and you can’t decide if he actually is good looking or you just think he is because all the women on the show are crazily lusting after him). I’m sure you get the gist. There’s also the ones with the vapid female leads, driven by soul destroying consumerist motives, whose love lives are destined to fail time and time again – until some day they don’t. It’s not real, they’re not nice and I think my head might explode.
I’m talking about horrendous films, the kind that girls get together and watch while sharing a bottle of wine, blocks of chocolate and the tears of ruined relationships. Like the one I’m watching right now – alone, with that disgusting glass of wine that I am actually considering tipping down the sink (but let’s be honest, no matter how bad it tastes, I’ll probably still keep drinking it). It’s bad, I know exactly how it will end – and she certainly won’t end up with the bloke she thinks she will – it’s her quirky off-sider she just met whose currently driving her insane that she’ll marry – not the wealthy doctor who she’s known for four years. Yet, I keep watching it. If my boyfriend were here he’d probably say something like ‘Oh god, why don’t you just get in a hot bath and slit your wrists, that would be less painful than watching this, I think it’s giving you eye cancer.’ – yeah, he’s a sweet heart.
From a technical sense, these flicks aren’t gonna win any acclaim – ditto the TV shows, they might not even break even at the box office but you know what? They’ll certainly make you feel something. Sure that ‘something’ might be a strange mix of happiness that the leading lady got her man, mixed with jealousy that your man may never live up to the high standards set by the on screen gents – or it might just be anger that you’ve wasted your precious time watching something that could potentially be used as torture material in Guantanamo bay.
Netflix tells me that most of these titles fall under the category of ‘feel good’ – and who am I to argue with the beauty that is Netflix?! I don’t know if it’s because they make me ‘feel good’ or because they sooth my brain cells (by not forcing me to use them) but one things for sure; I could be reading a really good piece of literature right now (honest, there is an actual book next to my bed) but I choose to watch this tripe – I, therefore, am no better than an accused terrorist!* Either that or I’m just a sucker for cheap thrills and mind numbing brilliance!
*That may not have been my point, but I’ve drunk a lot of wine now, that may or may not have morphed into poison, therefore my opinion is valid. Very valid indeed.