TV…What is it good for?!?


It’s well known that once you become a parent that you also begin to watch more cartoons than you did prior to children. Or at least you now watch cartoons that are more child friendly. Maybe, who knows?

My point is, cartoons.

While watching Loud House, Doc McStuffins, Sofia the First, etc. I’ve noticed a theme. They all teach lessons.

Be a good person.

Be truthful.

Share with others.

Learn to see things from a different perspective.

Forgive people.

Accept people.

The lists goes on and on. Great lessons taught in a simple way. Which got me thinking…at what point does that change?

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Once the kiddo is asleep I watch shows I like, shows that have a more adult theme. Archer, Arrow, Flash, Supergirl, Doctor Who, etc. These shows have awesome plots, complex characters but also a seedy under belly.

They all teach us that we can’t trust each other! Gone are the lessons of loving your fellow man. Now you have to make sure they aren’t going to stab you in the back, steal your job, or destroy your life.

When does it become acceptable that we expect this behavior from others? Do we expect this? Are we able to separate fact from fiction? Sometimes it’s hard to tell.

Office politics for example; if you don’t play, can you keep your job or prosper? Mean girls grow into mean women and make life miserable for those they deem unworthy or less than. They manipulate situations and people to their benefit. Very rarely have I seen them held responsible for their actions. It’s only when they become over confident that they sometimes meet karma.

I’ve noticed when I am watching these shows with my daughter that I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop with the “conflict” of the episode resolved. When it wraps up with a lesson and a hug I’m confused. My experience with TV content tells me that nothing can be resolved without major drama. This includes comedies and family shows!

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In thinking about this subject more and more it occurs to me that these programming options exist and continue to thrive because the majority of us can’t get enough. We want the drama, we want the backstabbing, and we want to see others suffer. It’s a sad, hard fact. These shows wouldn’t exist if they weren’t being watched.

So I’ve made a choice. I will only watch things that inspire or teach me something. When I tell people I don’t do drama, I want that to be true. This will having positive lasting effects if my theories are correct. We are what we watch, eat, believe, etc. If I want to keep an optimistic outlook I must make the effort.

That isn’t to say I’ll completely restrict myself. I still will watch the local news. They will keep me informed, along with my reading. I don’t need to watch cable news. I don’t want to watch cable news. It’s all about ratings and sensationalism anyways. It isn’t about informing the public. It’s about getting people to hate others who don’t agree with them.

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