This is basically a rant, but if you are as frustrated with the state of current TV as I am, you'll understand why I'm doing this.
For some time now, I've been entertaining the idea that television is dying. Not in the way Star Trek thought it would, with the technology becoming obsolete, but because its drowning in ever increasing mountains of crap.
I've never been a fan of contrived "reality" shows, but at least for a while there were still some good channels that played good things. But now it seems they're succumbing to the overall attitude that has enveloped TV: appeal to the lowest common denominator.
TLC died a long time ago, with shows like Toddlers & Tiaras, Sister Wives, and whatever that Sarah Palin show was. There's other stuff like Dance Moms and the seemingly endless number of shows following the Kardashians.
But probably worst of all is how formerly great channels like Discovery and History have fallen, with trash like American Chopper (at least its finally canceled now), Moonshiners, Amish Mafia, Swamp People, all the different gold mining shows, and quack conspiracy theory crap like Ancient Aliens (this one pisses me off so much I'm even thinking of trying to start a petition to get it taken off the air). Most of these shows, as well as those mentioned in the previous paragraph, are just excuses to pass off adults acting juvenile as "entertainment". How is this entertaining? What is entertaining about incompetent people yelling and swearing and fighting with each other all the time? And while they promote these shows, they give less and less time to whatever is left that is still worth the time to make and watch, like MythBusters.
I also feel put off by how the majority of dramas are constantly trying to outdo each other in the "gritty/sexy" department. No, I'm not a prude, and I think when this sort of thing was just getting started it served its purpose to stretch the bounds of what the censors would and wouldn't let us see. However, now its just completely over the top, and I'm sick to death of it. This, like the reality shows, is just pandering to the worst aspects of humanity. I do believe that there is such a thing as too much of something.
So in this veritable desert of TV land, where there is little good left to watch, what have I started doing? Surprisingly, I've retreated to reruns of Touched by an Angel. Yep, me, the not-in-any-way-religious person is watching Touched by an Angel. I did used to watch it in its first run and enjoyed it, and now I just find it a breath of fresh air. Its a decent show with decent people trying to help others, and frankly I think TV could benefit to a return to this type of series.
Lets try and accentuate the positive instead of reveling in the crass and negative.