Tuesday, September 09, 2008


I have guilty pleasures, yes. I admit it. The EW magazine, Madonna (scandalous), some reality shows (yes, I've tuned in to ANTM, embarrassing) and even some loud mouthed political radio shows, but..This is a huge confession.

Since I went through my high school years watching Kelley, Brandon, Dylan, and Brenda,

I thought I'd check out the newly revamped CW show: 90210. I had my wife DVR it while I was at the United Hillsong concert exactly a week ago today.

Am I the only one who wasted 120 minutes (thanks to DVR I could have fast forwarded through commercials, but another confession: I like them. Sick, I know) of my life watching 90210? If you did, will you admit it? Comment now. Now. I'm waiting.... (Please make me feel better). But please don't shame me.

If you didn't tune in, pat yourself on the back and be proud of yourself, if it's waiting in your TIVO-delete it.


9-0-2-1-NO. NO!

Heck no.

Why do I say, NO?

The extreme, super-spiritual answer:
How many more superficial, mean girl, one tree hill, clueless, gossip girl, OC, spin-offs do we need to deteriorate our culture and morally ruin the minds of teenagers, twenty-somethings, and possibly elementary aged kids who sneak peaks? Do we need more BAD role models in our culture that promote sexual promiscuity, deception, manipulation, cheating, pornogrpahy, disobeying parents, substance abuse, materialism, and vanity (all in the 1st installment of our West Beverly High crew) for our already struggling generation? Just another Hollywood attempt to get ratings by selling temporary satisfactions and glorifying the self-centered lifestyle. Couldn't we find more uplifting shows on the food network or Man Vs. Wild (or practically anything on the discovery channel). We all could spend our time doing better things, like learning to cook salmon, surviving in the wild, or hey reading our Bibles. Novel idea.

The thumbs down, Roger Ebert, "art critic" answer:
This attempt at revamping an iconic show that lasted ten seasons in the 90's is a risk...that failed hellatiously. The entire first episode was nothing but stereotypical characters and situations. The jocks, the drama queens, the substance users, the party girls, etc. Do we really need another show with teenagers showing off their private jets, lying about oral sex, and spending $800 on a dress (yes, these actually happened in the pilot episode). How about a show with award winning acting, real life situations that acknowledge and wrestle through issues and spotlight deep and witty characters like Juno?

The acting in 90210 was horrible, the writing was cliche, and overall the word CHEESY comes to mind. I'm so tired of bad TV. (If it wasn't for the WGA strike we'd have more episodes of LOST to watch!). Isn't the world tired of shows where people live immature, self-centered lives with no redeeming value what so ever? Uh, no. It's not. Cause we'll always be interested in watching this type of garbage.

Ok, maybe my angst comes from how possibly real to life this is for SOME PEOPLE. I know not everyone lives large like this, but I remember my high school experience and the masks I wore. I was desperately wanted acceptance and significance. And I also interact with many students both in high school and college that face the same challenges. And then my angst turns to sadness. I guess Solomon was right. There is nothing new under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1:9).

Same Zip Code
Same Drama
Just different people.

Maybe the frustration comes from sinful desires and the wake up call to reality (thanks to the Holy Spirit's prompting). If I (or we) was honest, I'd admit living in this fantasy. Come on, right? That's what sucks us in to these guilty pleasures. Wouldn't it be great if life was like Hollywood? Always look zit free in the newest designer clothes, drive great convertible cars, live in mansions the size of Disneyland, get anything you wanted, sleep around with anyone and everyone with no fear of STDS, party it up, and have it "all work out" within an hour slot on TV. But when we combat lies with truth we are smarter than that. We know #1-that this isn't reality (everyone wakes up with bad hair and breath) and #2-there's real pain and deep consequences to living life like this. And TV rarely exposes or deals with these. We know that God's design calls for us to live a life that has purpose beyond our our fleshly desires. We know that relationships are hard work and honesty must be a foundation. God's word calls us to DENY OURSELVES and pick up our cross and follow Jesus (Luke 9:23-27). We are called to lose our life and forfeit comfort. Most of us are better off, more safe, more healthy, and more satisfied by living lives according to God's truth especially when we find it a joy and not a burden. Unfortunately, Hollywood will never make a TV show about that. (For your listening pleasure listen to SUPERCHICK'S TV LAND). (Another song I like is Vicky Beeching's: Created).

So, what about you? What tabloid do you read, reality show, or utterly pointless TV drama do you watch, (or secretly wish you did)? How do you handle the messages from the media regarding appearance, sex, relationships, marriage, stuff, etc?

Once you confess we'll all start a support group...or else a production company


Candice said...

i confess. we dvr'd and watched last week. guilty pleasure is about right...and though I'd never recommend to another High School student to watch, I'd be a hypocrite and probably watch - knowing that this is, of course, not real life and far too stereotypical to be believable. i'll probably get out of watching it...it will lose its novelty....
but i'm down for the production company and will gladly volunteer my acting abilities ;).

elise said...

have you ever read "a return to modesty" by wendy shalit?

it's a good study of our culture in respect to the messages we receive about sex and relationships and modesty.

it's great.