Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The History? Channel

When did the History Channel become appointment viewing for the Sarah Palin set?

It used to be that the History Channel was about, well, history. It was the favorite of every old man in America, and my husband when he couldn't find a re-run of Nova anywhere. The sexiest or most scandalous it got was shows about medieval weapons, or volcanoes that had buried towns and were threatening to do it again. Oh, and even those shows were narrated by someone with a boring British accent in order to make them seem less exciting.

My, how times have changed.

Now the most popular show on the network is "Pawn Stars" or, as Tara calls it, "White Trash Antiques Roadshow." Basically is has people coming into a Las Vegas pawn shop to sell family treasures to get money that will likely be gambled on the strip, or spent on drugs. Yes, many of the items have some historical significance, but that doesn't change the fact that the show is about desperate people trying to get a little bit of scratch, and the owner of the pawn shop only caring if he can make a buck.

Oh, and let's not forget about the other "historical artifacts" show on the network, "American Pickers." Tara hasn't come up with a nickname for this one, but I like to think of it as "Grifting Shut Ins Who Have Really Great Stuff, But Don't Know What They Have, Because They Are Shut Ins." I think you get the gist of the show now. These two guys go around the country finding people with valuable items in small towns, tell them the items are junk, buy them for nothing, and then sell them at auction and make a fortune. Not only is it perfect for the History Channel because of antiques, but because this is basically what the Europeans did to Native Americans, so it's showing how history repeats itself. Bonus.

Then, of course, there are the new shows on the channel that would have nothing to do with history if it weren't for the channel's new slogan "History happens every day." Hey, going by that theory you can pretty much put any reality show on the air. I'm hoping soon they will get around to cracked out midget hookers, but right now they are focusing on people who drive trucks in insane conditions in Canada, and Cajuns who hunt alligators and can't count to ten on their teeth. Now, I don't want to offend anyone, but I am going to go out on a limb and guess that neither group will make any real, lasting history past their final seasons. Yes, they may make family history, or history in their industries, but I doubt Meg or her children will be reading about them in text books. Really though, the way society is going, maybe text books won't exist in 20 or 40 years. Maybe someone will be able to write their doctoral thesis on "Swamp People: Season 1" -- and then sell it to a pawn shop for a couple bucks to buy glue for huffing.

Maybe the History Channel should start showing "Idiocracy." You know, just to give people a taste of what future "history" holds. They just need to splice in the election of President Palin.

12 comments:

Rob said...

You gotta love cable. You can never tell what you'll find by the name of the network.

Riot Kitty said...

My dad and brother (the 31-year-old, not the 14-year-old, who is more mature) are addicted to the Pawn Stars show. I had no idea that was on the history channel (don't have cable) - that is just sad.

Midwestern Mama Holly said...

Sarah Palin and her whole hee haw bunch gives me hives and makes me want to club a baby seal.

G said...

Even a President Palin would make more sense than the current one.

Then again, even a President Clinton would make more sense (and as a Republican, I might, repeat, might, actually vote for her).

Personall, I don't watch Pawn Stars but I do watch both American Pickers and Ice Road Truckers

However, if you really want good history shows, check out the Histroy International channel and the Military History channel.

LL Cool Joe said...

I don't watch tv anymore. Here in the UK we have so many friggin channels now, and still I find that there is nothing that's worth watching. I do watch the music channels sometimes just to keep up with current music.

Boonie S said...

This sounds gross. Makes blogging seem almost respectable.

All the best, Boonie

Granny Annie said...

We still watch THE HISTORY CHANNEL The other shows you mention do not appeal to us just by their name and so we don't bother. That is what I love about "choice" click, click, click.

justmakingourway said...

I'm so with you on this! It's like when MTV stopped showing videos and started having eight million episodes of Road Rules instead. Even my beloved Discovery Channel is going this route - American Loggers, Man, Woman, Wild (WTF?)and The Colony? Bleh. Also, any show they have on space or the Earth MUST contain the inevitable, "We're going to be hit by a huge asteroid!!!!" sensationalism. Lame.

wildology said...

Hahaha! Too True. I have never really thought about it. I did once watch the History of Sex on the History Channel. It was......interesting. :) Boooo to Palin.

Mandy said...

I have to admit to being sucked into American Pickers. It's like watching Hoarders only the hoarders have stuff that people want to buy.

Amanda said...

Personally, I am besmirched by the Nikki Sixx-wannabe bug killers. Oh wait, that is A&E, because there is nothing more artful than killing a slew of "critters" while dressed in Rob Halford's costuming castoffs.

Rassles said...

"Not only is it perfect for the History Channel because of antiques, but because this is basically what the Europeans did to Native Americans, so it's showing how history repeats itself. Bonus."

I am so glad I don't have cable anymore so I don't have to watch that shit go down.