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Why television sucks, part XCVIII - Elf M. Sternberg
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elfs
Why television sucks, part XCVIII
I awoke this morning before everyone else and, having little else to do, snuck down to the TV room and did something I haven't done in months: I channelsurfed. And while engaging in this mindless activity I came across an ancient relic of a happier time as Turner Broadcasting was showing Smokey and the Bear. I had forgotten than once upon a time Burt Reynolds was hot and Sally Field were cute, that Jackie Gleason was talented beyond his years, and that "cool" car stunts with stock engines and no digital enhancements usually consisted of jumps of maybe four or five car lengths. It's not a brainy movie, just one long car chase but well-done and it's obvious that Reynolds, Fields, and Jerry Reed are having a whole lot of fun moving from one scene to the next.

I had to turn it off. The advertisements that interspersed the action were for diabetes medicines, heart medicines, liver medicines, "I've fallen and I can't get up" services and, most disturbing of all, erectile dysfunction treatments. And I'm sitting there thinking, is this my demographic? Is this the population I will have joined when I turn 40 next year? This movie is clearly aimed at me: I was thirteen when it came out and it's all about cars with a little mushy love story somewhere in the middle. I don't want to be one of those people to whom they're selling those drugs, though.

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Current Mood: annoyed annoyed

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Comments
sierra_nevada From: sierra_nevada Date: December 31st, 2005 08:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
You haven't watched any of the "big three" network evening news programs lately, have you?

This is one of many reasons why I have a TiVo, and hate watching TV without one now.
acelightning From: acelightning Date: December 31st, 2005 09:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think the movie is supposed to be aimed at people five to ten years older than you are - I don't recall too many thirteen-year-olds being interested in it when it came out. But even so, that demographic is still far from needing denture adhesives and personal-alarm services! Hell, I just turned 58, and I certainly don't need those things!

However, the erectile-dysfunction medications aren't only for old guys who can't get it up. Younger men take them too. Some of them do have erectile problems, caused by stress, psychiatric medications (most of the popular antidepressants have "lack of libido" as a side effect), or other factors not completely related to age. But even guys who don't have true erectile dysfunction take the stuff, hoping it will make their erections bigger, harder, and longer-lasting. It doesn't, but the drug companies will cheerfully sell it to them anyway...

kengr From: kengr Date: December 31st, 2005 11:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
Whereas the results of one such med on me have been less than spectacular (details via email if you are curious :-)
acelightning From: acelightning Date: January 1st, 2006 06:02 am (UTC) (Link)
email me, then...
solarbird From: solarbird Date: December 31st, 2005 11:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
The baby boomers are just heading into that age group, and those who aren't have parents who are. And they're still the nr. 1 market target for most advertisers trying to target "the general market."

Similarly, it's kind of weird watching all these people-warehouses being built for extended assisted elderly living. It took me a little while to realise what they were, but I did, and asked around a bit, and I was right. Strange!
mothball_07 From: mothball_07 Date: January 1st, 2006 01:30 am (UTC) (Link)
You're hardly average, nor do you strike me as a hypochondriac with penile insufficiency phobias. They're not targetting *you*. ;)
featheredfrog From: featheredfrog Date: January 1st, 2006 01:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Turner Broadcasting was showing Smokey and the Bear.

Quite a freudian something. You meant, of course (and linked to) "Smokey and the Bandit"

"East bound and down, loaded up an rolling. we gone do what they say can't be done..."

Only YOU can prevent Coors Bootlegging...
acelightning From: acelightning Date: January 1st, 2006 06:06 am (UTC) (Link)
Just before midnight, I turned on the TV to watch the ball drop in Times Square. I happened to tune in to Dick Clark's festivities... his mind seems undamaged, but the horribly slurred speech was painful to listen to. But that's not my point here. While all the musical acts were geared towards my son's generation, when the commercial break came, they were advertising cholesterol-control medicine and sleeping pills. Sheesh.
From: patsyterrell Date: January 1st, 2006 07:05 am (UTC) (Link)
I remember the first time I was thinking, "man this station is playing all the good songs" only to have them come on and announce "oldies station." It was a rude awakening. I think I was 28 at the time.
_candide_ From: _candide_ Date: January 2nd, 2006 03:11 am (UTC) (Link)
Heck, I started going through bouts of "Oh noooo! I'm getting old," at 26.

Well, memory does begin diverging from reality sooner than one realizes...
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