Same movies, different day

Shop Girl by Kitty Kaufman

I got my cable bill today. It's and that's just for TV. My provider calls this 'expanded basic' which means you get great reception, lots of sports and then things like TNT and AMC but not pricier venues like HBO and Starz. My cable box goes up to 80 and you would think that's more than enough.

Where I live there's no TV reception without cable even though I'm not in the wilds of western Massachusetts. When Cablevision rode into town in 1983 everyone in Brookline went out to buy a color set because before that you didn't need one since you couldn't see anything.

Why are stations playing the same movies over and over? These aren't local channels. I'm talking about WE, AMC, BRV, TNT and FX and I'm sure there are others. The movie plays and then right after, they play it again. Sometimes they play it and then they show something else and they run it again or some combination of all weekend or all week when you were so hoping to see something else.

As my friend Ed says, "Gee, I didn't know you could start a TV station with a library of ten movies." He's exaggerating but not so much. Two of WE's favorites are "Baby Boom" with Diane Keaton and "Under the Tuscan Sun" with Diane Lane. E likes "27 Dresses" a lot. FX favors "The Devil Wears Prada, but it's been edited. As it turns out they are my favorites, but as much as I like them I don't want to see them every other week. And certainly not several times the same day.

Let's say you're taking a sick day. You're so sick you can't even sit at your computer. There you are hoping to watch a great afternoon movie; okay, a good movie. The movie comes on, you see it and now you're ready for more because you're still sick. You think it's the fever because you closed your eyes for a minute and it's still playing. Switching stations doesn't help; they're all in on the same game.

The stations get to do less and I'm pretty sure this has nothing to do with global warming, cell phone towers, being innovative or organic programming. I keep hanging in there because well, I like TV. Not as much though.

© June 12, 2008
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