The End of Tellin’ The Vision

Posted: May 9, 2012 by Kim VDH in Uncategorized

To all of our fans,

We are sorry to inform you that after May 18 the blog will no longer be up and running.  Hopefully you have enjoyed all of our posts and learned something new or interesting about TV. Your comments and feedback have been greatly appreciated through out the course of the site’s history.  This blog couldn’t have happened without the dedication of both the fans and staff.

Your Bloggers,

Andrew, Pri, Sidney, Samantha, and Kim

COMMUNITY

Posted: May 9, 2012 by ahaffner in Andrew

If you haven’t seen this show, then get on it asap. The show follows a group of people from all walks of life who are originally united in a Spanish study group at their school, the hilariously ineffective Greendale Community College. Notable cast members abound here, with Joel McHale,  Chevy Chase, Leslie Chow (aka the Asian dude from the Hangover, Role Models, etc.) and Donald Glover, who moonlights as rapper Childish Gambino. It’s also written and produced by Dan Harmon, a Milwaukee native whose work is featured amongst some of the best comedies of our day. Memorable misadventures include: 2 campus-consuming paintball wars, 1 monkey named “Annie’s Boobs,” 1 crazed ex-student living in the air vents, 1 absurd dean, several, several movie references, and an insane glee club leader. The show is in its 3rd season now, and, as a view since the beginning, it’s been a trip to see the characters learn and grow as their relationships to each other, and their school, change. Hilarious and sometimes heartwarming, Community is an example of quality television.

SNL

Posted: May 7, 2012 by ahaffner in Andrew

For those who are unaware, SNL, or Saturday Night Live, is a late-night live sketch comedy show featured on NBC. On air since 1975, the show features a cast of actors, commonly drawn from improvisational comedy groups, who perform a series of sketches parodying pop culture, politics, and daily life. Pre-taped mock advertisements and, more recently, Digital Shorts, are also aired, all while a studio audience laughs at appropriate moments.

The show has seen cast members such as Michael Meyers, John Belushi, Eddie Murphy, Will Ferrell, Tina Fey, Amy Pohler, Dan Aykroyd, Chevy Chase, Billy Crystal, Adam Sandler, Chris Farley, David Spade, and…others. Several movies, including the Blues Brothers, Wayne’s World, and Night at the Roxbury were spawned from sketches, as was Dick in a Box, an Emmy winning song by Andy Samberg and his Lonely Island crew.

So, point is, the show’s a hit. No, sorry, that’s an understatement; despite how you may feel about the show in its current state, it’s a piece of truly iconic American television.

Andy Samberg killin it

THA NEWS

Posted: May 7, 2012 by ahaffner in Andrew

I don’t watch the news on TV very often, but when I do, it’s usually silenced at a gym or restaurant. Like much of my generation, and, I suspect, an increasing portion of those who came before us, I consume most of my news online; lately I’ve been getting more into reading newspapers, as I enjoy the feeling of superiority it gives me. But aside from this, televised news is a long-standing American tradition. From the days of Walter Cronkite and other classic newscasters, to today’s crop of highly partisan, squabbling news squads, we as a nation have valued our news.

Despite the encroachment of the Internet, cable news is still going strong. According to this survey by the Pew Research Center poll results about 57% of Americans reported that they typically watch the news every day. Meanwhile, a poll quoted by The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/jan/27/fox-news-most-popular reported that Fox news was, amazingly, the most trusted news source amongst those polled. Fox is noteworthy in its politically charged programming and targeting of a partisan niche audience, tactics that have driven up its ratings at the expense of long time rivals CNN and MSNBC.

As I said earlier, I don’t watch the news very frequently; I think it’s a little archaic, with its commercials and its set-in-stone list of stories that may not interest me. Many of the topics covered are human interest pieces with considerable shock or cuteness value, which only reminds me that the whole point of the show is to draw in as many viewers as possible. Televised news does occasionally provide us with some awesome clips; here is one of them.

TV and the Web!

Posted: May 6, 2012 by Priyanka in Pri

Morning bloggers! Today I wanted to talk about a few different TV network’s websites I found fascinating, ABC and CW. Not only can you stream full episodes, but today’s online TV world let’s you see extra footage and behind the scenes action on the show! Each website is different, representing the network and how it serves it’s viewers.

As I was browsing through ABC family’s website, www.abc.go.com, I came across some really cool things! The homepage was easy to navigate and the latest new shows were grandly presented! The shows themselves were separated into three different categories, “whats hot”, “daytime”, and “evening”. The shows that currently weren’t on air were also shown, integrated into these categories. I clicked on one of my favorite shows “Modern Family”. The page was filled with tons of access to everything, photos, videos, bios, and this cute virtual book called a “memory book”. It was an online scrapbook with all the episodes this season, filled with photos and captions and it even had some videos. I then found out there was a contest with the memory book. Fans would send in a funny family memory book page and then get voted on! I thought this idea was so unique, and never would’ve pictured this on a TV website!

After my ABC search, I went to the CW website, www.cwtv.com. I’m much more familiar with this website because almost all my shows that I watch are on here, so it’s super easy to stream them if I ever miss a week. What’s cool about the CW is that it integrates so many cool new gadgets in technology in their website. From Facebook to Pinterest boards, CW had so many options. I clicked on Gossip Girl, my favorite show on CW. Similar to ABC, I found links to meeting the cast, photos, videos and more. I even found a link to a blog for Gossip Girl that recapped all previous episodes. What I found really cool was that Gossip Girl had a Spotify channel! Spotify is a music station similar to Pandora, CW had put together all the music from season 4 of the show and made a music station for it! There was GG games, books, and more.

Both the sites had so much to offer fans. I think a lot of times these sites are overlooked and just used for streaming, but for die-hard fans of shows there are such cool links on the network’s websites. Do you guys agree? How many of you have never really looked through a TV website? The options are limitless!

Media Fluency is All Around

Posted: May 1, 2012 by snwolk in Samantha

Hey there bloggers.  Today I watched a hilarious clip on YouTube of Ellen DeGenerous attempting to do a reading of a book called ’50 Shades of Grey’ by E.L. James.  Because I don’t know if it would be appropriate to post on a blog for class, I instead recommend that those of you who have read or heard of the book go check it out. After getting over the hilarity of the clip itself, it occurred to me just how many media were taking place in this one clip.  I was watching a clip from television on the internet about a book.  Does that boggle anyone else’s mind?  As the semester comes to a close, I find myself continually thinking about things like this in my everyday life, something which is most definitely attributed to this class.  I was wondering if this has happened to anyone else. While I am always entertained with the content around me, I can’t help but notice aspects of social media and media fluency all around.  Specifically with TV, I have seen several commercials that end with a picture with a Facebook or Twitter button or a voice saying “check us out on Facebook.”  Additionally, there are now television shows today about video games and video games that incorporate television shows.  There are websites that are dedicated to different TV programs or characters from shows that include blog posts about fans’ favorite episodes, plot lines they want changed, or their preferred love triangles.  There is no longer such thing as separate media, they have all converged together, are intertwined, and, at this point, can’t exist or succeed without each other.  What do you think that says about our culture today?  Was this inevitable?

Let’s Get ‘Real’.

Posted: April 27, 2012 by Sidney in Sidney

Reality Television has been around since the beginnings of TV but has only recently become extremely popular. We all recognize Jersey Shore and the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills as “reality shows”, but this category is home to many of other types of shows. From game shows like Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune to adventure-type shows like Survivor, Man vs. Wild, and Fear Factor, the reality TV genre is much more expansive than you may believe.

Reality TV exploded in the 2000s with the introduction of Big Brother, American Idol, Survivor, and more. Some of these shows have even spurred a global reaction creating similar shows all around the world; American Idol, America’s Next Top Model, Survivor, Dancing with the Stars, The Apprentice, and Fear Factor. The huge increase in viewership was probably due to the fact that shows like this had never been so ‘relatable’ or ‘entertaining’ before! Reality shows can be split into groups even further: those that feature a special living environment (Survivor, Amazing Race, The Real World, Jersey Shore, etc.), those that focus on celebrities’ lives (Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Gene Simmons Family Jewels, The Simple Life, etc.), and those that focus on professional activities (Deadliest Catch, Man vs. Wild, Miami Ink, The Bounty Hunter, etc.). With so many types of reality programs available today, it is no surprise that it is one of the most popular genres on TV right now.

Several channels on TV are considered specifically reality channels – TLC, Animal Planet, Discovery Channel, Bravo – while others include, but are not limited to, reality programs – MTV, VH1, CW, E!. Just this year, several new reality shows were introduced to the line-up and have made huge impacts in popularity. The most popular reality shows of 2012 (from most popular to least) are as follows: The Voice, American Idol, Duck Dynasty, America’s Next Top Model, Jersey Shore, Survivor, Dancing with the Stars, MythBusters, The Apprentice, and Punk’d.

Though there are always new reality shows being released, I found it interesting that so many of these reality programs have been in the running for several years! American Idol is on its tenth year, America’s Next Top Model is on its ninth, and Survivor is now on its twelfth (does anyone still watch this?!)! I wonder what it is about these shows that they are still being actively produced year after year. What do you think it is? Do you still watch American Idol religiously like you might have the first few seasons? Or is it all getting a little repetitive? I personally still enjoy many of these shows but I do think a few are starting to grow a little old and definitely repetitive.

Also, how do you feel about reality shows being titled ‘reality‘ shows?! Is what these shows are portraying the real deal or are the characters in the shows being fed lines and situations to enhance the entertainment quality? This may not be the case with every program out there, but it is definitely a possibility in Jersey Shore, the Real World, and Real Housewives. What do you think?

Leave a comment! Thanks for reading! :)

Sidney