One of the few things I respect about mainstream TV is how utterly shallow and addictive it is. In many ways it’s like crack: it doesn’t pretend that it’s good for you but it gets you to where you want to go way more effectively than tofu or wheatgrass juice or organic dolphin-friendly tuna caught with rod and line. Sometimes it achieves high artistic standards too, but this is usually a fluke, which happens despite the medium rather than because of it. TV isn’t like film or opera or theatre or sculpture or any of that poncy stuff. Its main job is to get you out of it as quickly as possible — an opiate for the masses.
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