Monday, September 17, 2012

Watching Television Is Not About You

Why can't I watch it, daddy?
~Because I find it annoying.

If I were submitting entries for Best-Responses-By-a-Parent, I might leave this one out, but it is definitely an answer I have given frequently. You can think little of me if you so desire. It's not like I have never watched my children's favorite programs that left me wanting to gouge out my eyes.
η τηλεόραση : television by Hana Kirana
For instance, I can tell you more than I wish I knew about Blue's Clues, The Wiggles and My Little Pony. I have heard classical music on Little Einsteins and seen Tootles rescue Mickey Mouse more than I care to admit. But as my kids get older, their interests are turning to shows reminiscent of Saved By the Bell, but without the acting talent.

It's the sort of TV that makes my wife question her career choice, since she could indeed write this stuff. That is, if she wanted to annoy people. It's half hour shows filled with plot lines so far beyond predictable that even the laugh tracks begin to groan.

But maybe, just maybe, some of the writers stole an idea from the old book of Esther. Now please keep in mind that I actually enjoy the story of Esther. A pretty girl, a brave choice and a bad guy to dislike. It's a good story. But if you are the aforementioned bad guy in this story, you almost have to see your end coming. Unless, of course, you've never seen Saved By the Bell.

Haman, the bad guy, is set up as a classic foil. Just as he's planning to hurt Mordecai (a guy who saved the king), the king is being reminded of how Mordecai was never rewarded for saving his life. A chance meeting with the king and Haman finds the king asking what should be done for the king's favorite guy. Haman assumes it's himself. (Prepare the laugh track.)

Haman gives a great idea for something he'd like to rewarded with, only to find himself giving that reward to Mordecai. The punishment set up for Mordecai, instead, ends up going to Haman. Talk about your lose-lose situation.

I suppose the best lesson for Haman is to never ever assume the story is about you. It doesn't end well.


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