Towards the end of July, a curious ad began popping up on Time-Warner Cable stations in New York. “CBS is giving New York a big black eye,” read the on-screen text, “demanding an outrageous price for WCBS-TV.” Yes, in what may be the finest real-life example of the old saying about the pot and the kettle, Time-Warner Cable is livid over a company overcharging for television service. That’s their turf! And thus began the Great TWC/CBS War of 2013, now lumbering into its second month, with the cable company blacking out CBS affiliates and Showtime for over three million customers in New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Pittsburgh, and Detroit. Earlier this week, Time framed the battle as “the end of TV as we know it,” and that’s not just click-baiting headline hyperbole. Cable subscribers are already cutting cords with the enthusiasm of new dads in the delivery room; what they’re overpaying for from cable companies they can get cheaper and easier online. Still, wouldn’t it be in these corporate behemoths’ best interest to act a little less… what’s the word… assholey? … Read More
The proverb that a child’s mind is like a sponge can be as much a source of wonder as of vexation. Unlike primetime sitcoms and hour-long dramas on HBO, viewers tend to agree that children’s television must be driven by a higher purpose, and must deliver the right message. As a result, even when the programming seems lighthearted and beyond the reach of politics, the debate about kids TV can verge on bitter acrimony, whether it’s a show about neighborhood kids who love to share (“socialist propaganda”) or a hero who delivers the benefits of civilization to his fellow elephants (“promotes colonialism”). Concerned parents and uninvolved critics have always had something to say about the culture kids are exposed to. After the jump, inspired by the news that a Russian kids’ show was pulled off the air after a joke about Putin’s divorce, are a few controversies that have arisen in recent memory. … Read More
Flavorwire is celebrating Memorial Day with The Year in TV, a series of features on the 2012-13 TV season, which ends this month.
Confession: my best friend is a Sherlock Holmes superfan. She has merch. She’s read all the books. She’s written a cycle of (really great) poems based on his legend. I, meanwhile, have read a few of the adventures, seen a few of the Granada episodes, and find Sherlock in all his incarnations — as Robert Downey Jr., as Benedict Cumberbatch, as Johnny Lee Miller — mightily cute. Earlier this year, I was the Watson to my friend’s Holmes at a Sherlock Holmes charity ball, where I met several other superfans. No one had very nice things to say about Elementary. … Read More