Monday, August 03, 2009

I Miss the Days When the History Channel Showed Programs About History

These days it's all UFOs, cryptids, 2012 doomsday nonsense, sensationalized takes on biblical scholarship and church history, and Ice Road Truckers. The Universe, my favorite show on History, is fantastic; but it isn't history. It belongs on Discovery Channel.

Of course, History isn't alone in this regard. Jokes about MTV not playing music have become as stale and predictable as cracks about the other guy in Wham! (His name is Andrew Ridgeley; he's now in a life-partnership with one of the girls from Bananarama.) Lame jokes aside, there hasn't been much music on Music Television for a long time. VH1, the other supposed music network, held on after MTV had fallen, showing music-related programming well into this decade. Then the channel decided to devote itself to Bret Michaels and Flavor Flav's non-musical pursuits. Not so good. The Learning Channel—some time after Trading Spaces became popular but before shows about families with lots of kids became the channel's bread and butter—started calling itself TLC, hoping that people would forget that those letters once stood for something. Sci-Fi recently rebranded itself Syfy. We'll see what comes of that. Perhaps most disturbingly, programming on Cartoon Network is no longer limited to cartoons. (Cartoon will be showing Home Alone 3 this weekend.)

I miss having niche channels on basic cable. I miss the comfort that comes with knowing that I can turn on MTV and expect to see music videos or History and expect to learn about past events not involving space aliens, Nostradamus, or the Mongolian death worm. Do I have to get digital cable or satellite to get such channels? Do people really prefer Rock of Love to Behind the Music? Sadly, I expect that the answer to both of those questions is "yes."


Blogger T.J. said...

so very true...made me chuckle

7:23 PM  

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