When it comes to television shows, my long-standing pet peeve is when the characters handle a coffee cup and it is abundantly clear that there is no liquid in the cup. The way they hold it, or pass it off to someone else, is so carefree.
In real life, those cups have some weight to them and they aren’t handled with such nonchalance. Also, spillage! There is a gentleness required. Regular people aren’t tilting full cups at a 45 degree angle while talking.
Watch for it the next time you see a coffee cup in a TV show. Even look for how a character carries one of those drink holder cartons, that holds up to four drinks, and how they hand out each drink.
I could write 1000 more words about this, but I’ll spare you the headache and just write about something else.
Lately, I’ve been noticing some television shows incorporating COVID-19 into their fictional storylines.
I think I first noticed it when FBI: Most Wanted returned with new episodes late last year. Characters were wearing masks…and then they weren’t. It felt like the masks were there for a few scenes, just to acknowledge the current state of the world, and then they went back to “normal”.
In recent episodes, I still see some characters wearing masks, but it’s at odds times, and it’s normally just one person.
Meanwhile, over on New Amsterdam, the whole show is now centred around the pandemic, which I guess makes sense because the show’s main setting is a hospital. Again, the mask wearing by characters is inconsistent.
It confuses me because it’s a…hospital.
And then the show, A Million Little Things returned this past Thursday and they are also tackling the pandemic, only they are picking things up a couple of days before the world shut down last year.
So, I guess the entire season will have viewers reliving exactly what they experienced for the last twelve months. Yay?
Look, I understand television shows feeling the need to cover real world issues and shine a light on certain things. I realize how difficult it would be for a medical show like, New Amsterdam, to just come back and do regular episodes about non-pandemic-y things.
As a matter of fact, they were scheduled to air an episode called, “Pandemic” last year, two weeks after the World Health Organization declared a pandemic. Of course, they did not air that episode.
So, I get it. Their show was always about shining a light on the Health Care industry, so doing anything but incorporating the pandemic into their storylines would’ve felt wrong.
For the other shows that are kind of acknowledging the pandemic (but not really), I don’t like it. It is like PTSD hitting me over the head.
Plus, I don’t understand the point of characters wearing masks for a couple of scenes, only to ditch them for the rest of the episode. What’s the point?
I get it, it’s a television show and having characters in masks for 42 minutes isn’t the most ideal scenario. I certainly don’t want that. So, why do it at all?
I’m sure that answer lies somewhere inside a boardroom at a television network’s headquarters.
When I watch these shows, I never think of them as happening in real time. I’m not watching an episode in December and wondering why the characters aren’t battling a snow storm every other day.
The Blacklist is an example of a show that returned and, as far as I can tell, hasn’t acknowledged the pandemic as part of their storylines. That show is happening in its own space-time continuum, which I am perfectly fine with.
They created a fictional world and are staying in it.
I am curious to see what A Million Little Things does in the coming episodes because it really looks like we’re going to be living through the pandemic, from Day 1, all over again.
Perhaps, I am in the minority. Perhaps, people actually want to see this?
Personally, reliving the pandemic through the lens of a television show is giving me conniptions.
That being said, I will watch every episode because I have a hard time giving up on shows. Once I start watching a series and am into it, I can’t bring myself to quit. I am too curious to find out how everything plays out.
That’s what I tell myself. That’s a blog post for another day.
Anyway, that’s all I wanted to say today. Should I bookend this post with another pet peeve? All right, I will.
What’s the deal with (now I sound like Jerry Seinfeld) extras always hustling and bustling in the background of scenes? Every show turns into a university campus, with people going in eighteen different directions.
That’s not my pet peeve though. My pet peeve is that there aren’t enough (or any) extras walking around while staring at their phone, or sitting on a bench, endlessly scrolling. Shows still give off the impression that most people aren’t obsessed with a tiny screen in front of their face.
It’s cute. And archaic.
I swear, I need to be hired by a television production team and given the job title, “Director of How People Act in Real Life”.
I’ll stop now and think of a title for this post.
Thanks for reading!
Do you mind if television shows incorporate the pandemic into their storylines? Is it necessary? Do you have any pet peeves when it comes to television?