I don’t have a television. It’s my daughter’s fault. I’d warned her that if we had another argument about turning the telly off, I’d get rid of it. She argued; I called the neighbours. After they’d taken my temperature, they took away the television, as well as the recordable DVD player and the thousand remote controls I never got the hang of in the first place (good luck with that, guys!) My daughter has yet to forgive me, but let’s face it, if you possess a computer connected to a broadband network, there’s not too many reasons to grieve: all of the networks are showing their wares in cyberspace, even if the commercial ones show that irritating, non-fastforwardable ad at the beginning. One downside: unless you get recommendations from others, you end up missing out on some cracker shows, simply because you’re not aware of their existence.
So I’ve belatedly become a fan of Beautiful People (thanks Liz!) and Glee (yes, I was already switched on to Mad Men, thanks to Michael). I adore tv that has witty dialogue and a serious edge (Six Feet Under’s earlier series being the best example of both). Glee veers pretty close to cheese sometimes, and Beautiful People to slapstick, but they are redeemed by the utter gorgeousness of the characters, even the hideous ones. I also love the way both series deal with the hard yards involved in creative endeavours – and the w*nkers and poseurs who occasionally, and generally temporarily, flourish in artsy environments (the Tracey Emin pisstake on BP was brilliant).
The reason I’ve actually had some time to indulge in screen is because I’ve had a week off the dayjob to talk to kids at Churchlands Senior High School and Penrhos College, and to finish rewriting V Girls. I really enjoyed being back in schools again, observing the different atmosphere each one creates, the way teachers interact with their students and vice versa, and the social order that is visible even to a visiting writer. And oh, how I loved the cerese couches at Penhros – even though they so entirely matched my top that if I’d sat down, I would have vanished (as A.J. so rightly pointed out).
Back to rewriting (sigh). Oh, but wait – isn’t there an episode of Glee I’ve missed? Then I’ll turn it off. I promise.