So much more scan lines

2008-08-29 13:57
Wow Chris! Did you think about
this all by yourself? It's just the
same old drivel rehashed in a new article.
Let me see if I can get your winning
formula straight...

Step 1: The setting (Your living
room, the local grocery store, some public gathering place, etc.
Step 2: Your own quirky take on the specific scenario you find yourself in.
Step 3: (drum roll please) Hit the white South African with the 'guilty, racist bastard bat'.
Does that about cut it?
Maybe I should apply for a job at I think I have this journalist thing down pat.

It’s been a slow week, so I’m just going to go ahead and count this as my first piece of serious literary criticism. Hooray! OK, so it’s amateurish and its logic falls flat faster that a toddler with elephantitis on a unicycle, but it’s still an effort. So just for fun, I’ve decided to clearly label the three distinct steps I repeatedly use in the hopes of turning all my readers into Satan-worshipping communists. Here goes:

Step 1: The setting
My parents’ house last week. If I don’t visit them for a few weeks, my mother phones to complain.
"For all you know, we could have been lying here dead for weeks," she scolds.
"Oh, no, I’m sure someone would have phoned," I reply.

They’re chuffed with their new HDTV-ready home entertainment system. A monolithic LCD screen dominates the living room. Six speakers stand ready to unleash a can of tinnitus on my eardrums if an actor so much as coughs off-screen, because although sound quality in the new format remains unchanged, the golden rule of upgrading anything is that one almost always leads to another. I see my inheritance grow wings and fly out the window.

My father is watching a softball match between China and Australia, because the Olympics channel is the only one he can find with an HD signal. We’re not really watching the game on television – we’re watching the actual television. Who cares what’s on?

The novelty of this new technology is far more entertaining than the stupid softball match. I’d bet good money that most people in the country watching the softball match were sitting with a new TV manual in their laps.

Step 2: My quirky take HDTV is basically just like normal TV, only more expensive. Sure, the picture is a lot sharper – big freaking whoopee. But when it comes to DSTV programming, we have to ask ourselves: how sharp do we need our picture really?

How clearly do I really want to see Derek Watts’ crow’s feet as he launches yet another turgid wad of mediocrity into the upturned face of suburbia? How many scan lines will it take to convince me that High School Musical: Spotlight South Africa isn’t the malignant effluvia of anti-art succubae here to rob the world of all that is good? Or is the new format’s real purpose just to make the adverts more effective? Let’s consider that possibility for a moment before we part with the hard-earned fruits of our socio-economic plunder.

Who, while watching DSTV five years ago was thinking, “You know, this satellite TV thing is great, but you know what we really need? More scan lines!”

Nope. We were thinking, "You know, this satellite TV thing is great, but you know what we really need? TV programmes that don’t totally suck balls!"

Because right now, with their current programming, introducing the HD format to DSTV is like sprinkling glitter on a dog turd.

Step 3: Hit the white South African with the 'guilty, racist bastard bat'
I find you guilty of watching crap television and I sentence you to more crap television. May your god have mercy on your soul.

- Chris McEvoy

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