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Other Side of the Coin

Okay, so last week I told you about five pop culture phenomenons that I didn’t get until it was too late (although, is it ever really too late to join a fandom?)….this week, it’s the opposite. Five things I just don’t understand – and, trust me, you’re going to be upset.

1. Mad Men. I’ve seen the first season and I just don’t understand why people keep watching this show. I never found a character to root for or even like and maybe that’s the appeal to some – to hate each character, but for me, I need at least one person who has some redeeming quality, even if they screw up from time to time. I did like watching it for the hairstyles and the clothes and the mod sets, but that’s not enough to keep me watching. And it wasn’t the anti-woman stuff, because, that I get – it’s historically accurate. Annoying, but accurate.

2. Harry Potter. Okay, this one is going to get me in trouble….and it’s not the writing, JK Rowling is a great author and I can understand it from that point, but (and this is strictly personal) he talks to snakes. Snakes?! I hate snakes, with a passion – I’m terrified of them. I can’t watch them on TV or in movies (see the fact that I have never sat through an Indiana Jones movie as proof of this) and reading about them icks me out too so although I read the first book and sat through the movie (although my husband had to tell me when the snake scene was over so I could come back into the room) I just can’t with the rest. So, for now, the rest of the series is out. I’m sure they’re great…and I’ll probably have everyone and their brother yelling at me, but I just can’t get over the snake thing. Sorry. (Hangs head in shame and walks away)

3. American Idol. Or any reality tv really. When I worked in an office, the other admins around me would always ask me what shows I watched. When I would rattle off things like How I Met Your Mother, South Park, Friends, Castle, Psych, White Collar, etc. they would look at me and then ask – No, what reality tv shows do you watch. When I told them none they were always shocked. Always. I like scripted television, with writers and actors. Yes, I know reality tv is far from real and they usually have writers, but it’s not the same. And as a singer, people always assumed I watched American Idol especially – why? I’ve been through auditions and call backs and rehearsals. I don’t need to watch it every week, especially with Simon (is that his name?) – the arrogance of that guy to assume he knows what’s what annoys me and I’ve only ever seen about 10 minutes of the show.

4. The Sopranos. Not much to say about this one really. I’m not big into the mobster shows or movies (I’ve never seen the Godfather movies or Good Fellows and actually, I get these two confused when my husband talks about them). And since I’ve never actually had HBO or Showtime, this wasn’t right at my finger tips, but even still – this is just one show I never had any desire to watch. Sorry gambinos.

5. Okay, honestly, I couldn’t come up with a fifth one so I asked my husband and he said Sports. I thought that was a bit broad and not really a pop culture phenomenon, but he begs to differ. He watches baseball, football, hockey, and basketball. Luckily, not all the time, but now that he has a smartphone he can check scores while in the bathroom (and I know he does) so he doesn’t feel the need to watch every game anymore. Thank you Apple. So…I don’t see sports as a culture phenomenon, but I guess in a way it is. I guess I could group the Olympics here too as I hate watching those…seriously, you take away my good comedies for this? Horse dancing, ice skating, and luge? What the heck is luge anyways? And don’t even get me started on curling. Ugh! Canada, come on! Pushing a metal tea kettle with a broom is NOT a sport.

There you go….do you hate me now? Can we no longer be friends? I’m sorry. I’m just being as honest as I can be about who I am and what I like and don’t like. I know people out there might be wondering about other things so let me know….what pop culture phenomenons would you like to know about? Doctor Who perhaps? Hunger Games? Cheesy 80’s Movies? (The answer to that last one is YES, I’ve seen them all)

Published inMoviesTelevision


  1. Mad Men took some getting used to; I, too, watched for the hairstyles and clothing. Eventually I fell in love with Joan Holloway (I even have her Barbie doll!). I have not yet watched the last season, though. It's a slow-moving show and sometimes very depressing, so I don't feel pressured to watch it (it can be exhausting).

    Harry Potter….well, you won't get around the snake thing in the rest of the books, which is a shame. She's one of the best writers of our time. She does have a new, non-HP book out. Maybe you should try it instead?

    I detest "reality" t.v., especially American Idol and its ilk. Those shows aren't looking for talent; they're looking for a product to sell. Did you see the article about Harry Connick, Jr. as a guest mentor? His discomfort with it describes our own (as legitimate artists).

    Go ahead and give your opinions on The Hunger Games, though. I'm interested to see them. 🙂

  2. Ok, I'll look into JK's non-HP book. Like I said, she's an excellent writer, it's just the talking to snakes thing. Maybe if Little Man starts reading them, I'll try again.

    I have not seen the Harry Connick, Jr. article but it sounds fascinating. I have many cabaret friends and almost all of them watch some variation of American Idol (or The Voice, or America's Got Talent, etc.) and I just don't get it – maybe it's a, look at how much better we are than them, thing – which I do get. HA

    I adored the Hunger Games books, the movie – not so much (they changed SO MUCH) – but Catching Fire (book 2) is my favorite of the three so I'm hoping the movie is better…..I don't have much hope, but I will see it. If only for the guy playing the half-naked Finnick. Yummy! Maybe when Catching Fire comes out, I'll do a little compare and contrast between books/movies and my impression….off to Evernote to jot that idea down before it leaves my head.

  3. Andrea Ploscowe Andrea Ploscowe

    Mad Men got me because in many ways, Don Draper was my dad, minus the cheating on my Mom. At least in the first and second seasons. He worked in creative for advertising companies on Madison Avenue, and the show suggested ways in which the character might evolve in ways similar to the evolution my dad went through in the late 60s and early 70s.

    The season closer of the first season focused on KODAK and slides, which touched on Rochester and my father, whose gorgeous photography was recorded on slides that he showed on his Kodak Carousel. Since the show started I've eaten my heart out at not being able to talk to my Dad about it. I would have loved to hear what he thought about everything covered in the show. It was his career, cultural and geographical area and era.

    Harry Potter, I'm with you all the way. It never captured me, but I'm not into fantasy stuff — witches and magic and trolls and all that crap. Same thing with "Game of Thrones" — Zilch, nada.

    Sopranos — Hey, you're not into Gangster stories the same as I'm not into magical fantasy stuff.

    American Idol and reality TV: With you all the way. As far as I'm concerned, every second spent watching that crap erodes one's IQ.

    Sports and the Olympics — Okay, I guess I can relate this to my not being into Hockey or Curling. Hockey's too fast for me to see what the heck is going on. Curling is too slow for me to care. Soccer — Like watching paint dry…and I used to play. You feel that way about all sports. There are many that I enjoy, but I think it's because I appreciate the kind of virtuosity necessary to excel in it…and the difficulty required. Virtuosity turns me on, so I love gymnastics and figure-skating (also the dancing grace and power of those sports).

    The only defense I'd like to give of Mad Men and the Sopranos is that they have really intelligent, snappy scripts. I'm a sucker for well-written dialogue…that makes you think and gives you insight and/or a thrill. I think both those shows excelled in that area, and that is why I liked both so much.

    To each his own. I love you no matter what, so we'll find something else to groove to together. There's so much in the world to enjoy, right?

What are your thoughts?

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