Monday, January 10, 2005

Here's the best thing so far to come up when I did a Google search for "topless squirrels": the Roadkill Museum. (Hey, it's a lot better than the Janitor on Scrubs killing and stuffing his own Squirrel Army.)

Speaking of Scrubs (which reminds me just a bit too much of our grad school program), here are a few TV shows which you may be surprised (or horrified) that I like. I know I'm horrified as well as surprised. Also keep in mind that I don't have cable, so this is all viewed* via rabbit ears on a very small screen.

Dr. Phil: Y'know, I really apologize, but I do sometimes like this show. (Although I'm bored by the weight loss episodes, of course.) Some of my more-behavioral colleagues are upset that this show gives the impression that someone can be "cured" in half an hour (instead of the weeks and months that the interventions really take offscreen). However, I have approved of a lot of his interventions. Furthermore, I like the way in which he confronts people with unpleasant truths about themselves in a straightforward, open manner that says "We're friends here, but you gotta stop doing A or B, because it leads to X." I also like that he does therapy in a way that makes it seem more accessible to "average" guys, who are the ones we find staying away from therapy in droves, drinking, and driving their wives into it.

Nanny 911: For similar reasons. This is basically family therapy, with really basic, simple, behavioral interventions. However, as the women are not therapists but nannies, I do notice that they are a lot more judgmental and personal in the way they approach the confrontation. (I.e., we would be skinned alive if we dared to roll our eyes at something a client said or did!) Still, the show does a good job of showing the reason why I don't specialize in children: parents want their "naughty" kids "fixed", while they want to maintain the environment and behaviors that are causing their kids' misbehavior in the first place. (Also shows how parents completely misunderstand the behavioral basis and the whole point of "Time Out" and therefore misuse it, then claim that "we tried that and it doesn't work with our kid".)

Medium: It sounds terrible, but I like Patricia Arquette. Also, I like supernatural-y shows as well as detective shows. So there you have it. I have always had a soft spot for weird shows like this (Remember Millennium, with Lance Henriksen? Or even Profiler, with that woman with the maddening eye-quirks?)

Boston Legal: Now, how can I dislike a show that features James T. Kirk of the Starship Enterprise as well as Chief Security Officer Odo of Deep Space Nine, now as attorneys?! (But Shatner is actually acting in this one.) It has some of the quirkiness that dumb Ally McBeal had, without all that infuriating borderline-personality anorexic-manhunt teen-girl BS. (Now, also includes Candice Bergen for added grownup appeal!)

Charmed: No redeeming quality whatsoever. I have no excuse for myself here. I just like shows with "magickal" stuff in. (And I like to fantasize on days of overwork that if I just showered and put on some makeup, I could look sort of like that, too. ) You would think I'd like Buffy for similar reasons, but have instead had a hard time getting into it. I think I prefer the sisterhood aspect of Charmed.

Okay, now the truly guilty one--Blind Date: (Don't confuse this with Elimidate, which in my opinion is simply a staged catfight and they might as well just do it in Jell-o.) But I am interested to see what weird things people do and don't like about each other in a face-to-face context. (I especially liked a recent episode in which a woman tried to get her date to act like a vampire, since vampires turn her on, and another episode in which a very religious woman tried to read the Bible to her date in the hot tub, and then angrily accused him of lusting after her instead of listening since she was wearing a bikini.)

And of course, reruns of X-Files.

Ones you probably won't be too surprised that I watch:

Canadian Air Farce: Canadian TV rocks. Especially Canadian comedy. Thank heavens I get TVO (Ontario) since I'm in Michigan.

Heartbeat: I know, but I can't help it. I'm all involved with the characters now, even though they are from the '70s. It's new to me!

Rosemary & Thyme: The name of the show is terribly affected of course, but I like the lady detectives. (Add to my list of ever-so-brief British detective series.)

Frasier: Again, little redeeming quality, though it makes me feel temporarily highbrow if I get the jokes.

Oh, pretty much anything Nova or otherwise on TVO or PBS . (Except for Lawrence Welk.)


*[When do I have time to watch TV? Well ... I don't usually "watch" it so much as have it on while I'm working, especially late at night. (Feels like someone else is also awake, so it keeps me awake, too.) This association has grown so strong that now it's difficult for me to simply put on a movie and watch it, unless I'm also working. Also, serious TV is hard for me to watch, because my brain is already fried, so it's best if it's something that is very fluffy and can be ignored for most of the program. Once I graduate, I'll get back to TV that I have to work to understand.] So it's not like I sit around waiting for any of these to come on, (or even know what day of the week they're on, to be honest) but I do occasionally watch them when it turns out they're on.


Andrew said...

We too have only "rabbit ears," which is good because I definitely have the propensity to be a weapons-grade couch potato. If I got a big plazma screen TV and the Dish Network, I'd soon have the physique of a sumo wrestler and the pallor of Casper the Friendly Ghost. Blech! With NFL football (or "meatball" if you prefer) drawing to a close, my TV viewing will soon be reduced to ONLY guilty pleasures:

* "Star Trek Enterprise": Yes, it's not very good. But it doesn't insult my intelligence, plus it has space ships and babes!

* "Andromeda": Sometimes I WANT to have my intelligence insulted, plus it has space ships and babes! I've always thought that Star Trek would be greatly improved if the characters could get the damned sanctimonious sticks out of their righteous asses. "Andromeda" does that to a certain extent, but a bit too much. Still, "Andromeda" has a "Xena: Warrior Princess in Outer Space" tounge-in-cheek attitude that appeals to me. Argotnaut hates it. It's an aquired taste, admittedly. Consider it my "Charmed" (which of course has witchcraft and babes!)

* Most mystery/science/documentary programming on PBS.

* I, too, like "Blind Date Not Elimidate." But it's always on at 2am or sometime when only shift workers, insomniacs and grad students are awake.

liz said...

Andromeda: "Kevin Sorbo, your mullet is long and glorious. Only you can save the universe!"

Andrew said...

Now to be fair, he lost the mullet after "Hercules." At least he doesn't deliver half his lines with his back to the camera like Scott Bakula -- that drives me NUTS! What, do the producers have to dub half Bakula's dialogue later because he's snickering?