Television. Black and white. Rabbit ears. Picture tubes. Consoles. One per neighbourhood. Ed Sullivan. Walt Disney. Hockey Night in Canada.
Television. Color. Cable. Portables. One per Family. Carol Burnett. Hee Haw. Hawaii 5 O.
Television. High Definition. Satellite. Flat screen. One per room. Survivor. Dancing With the Stars. Desperate Housewives.
Television. The little box that has kept us captivated for years. The little box that can be found most anywhere including the smallest huts in the poorest of countries.
Television. The little box that educates and titillates, that holds us hostage.
Television. We watch indiscriminately and we wait impatiently for our favourite shows. We dissect last night’s episode over coffee at work the next day. We moan if our program is cancelled and agonize during the summer as we anticipate the season premiere. Who did shoot JR? We cry when our favourite series comes to an end.
While much of what we watch is mediocre, there are many shows that stand out as great viewing. Sesame Street (in the early years), Night Court, M*A*S*H*, Sex in the City …
What makes a show great? Why do we love Cookie Monster, Tim “the tool-man” Taylor and Hawkeye Pearce?
You only have to watch one episode of my personal favourite, Buffy, the Vampire Slayer, to find your answer. Creative writing and great acting of course.