Thursday, October 18, 2007

the naked truth

I know this blog is probably more intended for Santa Fe-related arts and culture events but, let's face, it, TV is an important part of contemporary cultural life. True, we pretty much never cover TV in SFR (because we're not big or important enough to get TV screeners), but I gotta believe we've got readers who, like myself, occasionally watch the old idiot box.
As a general rule, I don't have any shows that I make a point of watching when they air, but I do have cable and Comcast recently rolled out On Demand, which means I can catch up on things that are out there in the zeitgist and see what the hoopla is all about.
So I did: I checked out HBO's latest, Tell Me You Love Me and I am now scarred for life. The show follows three screwed up couples as they live their screwed-up lives, talk about their screwed-up lives in therapy and screw. All the couples are white and some variation of middle class and are, in my opinion, mind-bogglingly awful. They are not particularly smart, or interesting, or funny. The youngest couple are, at least, attractive. The sex is graphic, but not in a porn way, more like if you happened to walk in on real people who are not fat having sex. The show also includes a storyline involving the therapist, Jane Alexander, who has her own personal issues. And who also has lots of sex with her husband. Which they show. Now, I realize it reflects poorly on me that I don't really want to see senior citizens having sex, but you know what? I don't think anyone else does either. And yes, when I am a senior citizen, I hope I am still having sex, but I will not be insulted if no one wants to see it.
The way in which they show is directed, cinematically and otherwise, is with a sense of reality TV thrown in. These are not well-known actors, they look a bit like regular people, nothing very dramatic ever happens. Often the couples just sit around not liking one another very much, eating meals, not saying what they are thinking. It's excruciating and mind-bogglingly boring. It's crazy that this is a TV show and even weirder that I'm watching it ("What will happen next? Will she go to the bathroom?). I doubt the show will survive past a season because all it really proves is that, no, fact is not stranger than fiction. Watching uninteresting people have uninteresting problems and hump one another is neither enjoyable nor interesting. But I guess it is new.