The funny disease.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Hopelessly Lost

Anne Sweeney, President
ABC Entertainment
500 S. Buena Vista St
Burbank, CA 91521-4551

Dear Ms. Anne Sweeney,

Despite my better judgment, and the chronic stupidity of the characters on Lost, I continue to be a regular viewer. Last night I was watching, when a television pop-up ad obscured the lower inch of the picture on my TV screen. I was not fazed by this, because ABC and other stations have trained us well. In fact, I’m having trouble recalling what the advertisement was even for. Let’s say it was an ad for Crest Whitestrips.

Were you aware that two of the characters on Lost are Korean? And furthermore that they often speak Korean to each other, in what I can only assume is part of the script? In order for us to understand what they are saying, as the typical American most definitely does not speak Korean, the producers of Lost have included handy dandy subtitles in their show. Anyhow, this ad for Crest Whitestrips, (or what have you) ran during the show, right over the subtitles. It seems to me that somewhere down the line at ABC, someone is confused about the use of subtitles. Simply put, if they are obscured by advertising, subtitles don’t work. Of course, they also don’t work for the illiterate, but in that case the ad for Crest Whitestrips wouldn’t have worked, either. Let us hope that the person at ABC who is confused about the use of subtitles, is not also illiterate.

You may think that I am going to ask you to stop putting banner ads on your lovely television network, but rest assured that nothing could be further from the truth. It used to be I would sit through the filler on the ABC Network, and think to myself, “When will we get to the commercials?” Occasionally, a character would be holding a Coke or wearing North Face jacket, but that just could not sate my craving, nay my need, to be pummeled over the head with refrains insisting that I need a Ford Focus, a Budweiser and a Blockbuster rental or life is not worth living. And who doesn’t need to be told that they should be smarter, thinner and prettier, twenty-three times within a one-hour period? But thanks be to God, that someone with a blindingly brilliant intellect recognized that useless space at the bottom of the screen during television shows. It’s not as if your viewers were doing anything, like, I don’t know…watching their stories.

So, where does that leave subtitles? I think the solution is a simple script rewrite, killing off Sun and Jin, the Lost characters that speak Korean. Why should ABC have to pretend to be culturally aware? This is America, where I think our national motto should be (if it isn’t already): “It’s too late to pretend we care about anyone else now.” Lost has to keep people captivated with violence and death, anyhow. It’s safer than keeping people riveted to the screen with sex, what with the KGB, (excuse me) I mean, FCC out there. That’s a whole separate category of complaint letter, I’m sure.

Hopelessly Lost,
Cursed Tongue


Blogger Chuckles said...

That sucks. My only gripe is that show sure seems like even the writers don't know where it is going.

1/19/2006 3:02 PM

Blogger Sarah Letnes said...

I got that impression, too. I can't seem to stop watching, even though by the end of every episode, lately, I'm just annoyed.

1/20/2006 8:40 AM

Blogger KyuBall said...

ABC executives constantly battle with themselves by bringing good entertainment to the screen while simulateously fucking it up with annoying shit.

There have been many "mini" series that they've run that I had to wait until they came out on video to watch because ABC would constantly give away the cliff hanger BEFORE they'd go to commercial.

Almost everytime the show would get ready to go to a commercial break, there would be some plot point that was just about to be the hero is stuck in a life or death situation...commercial.

But...just before the commercial, they'd show a "bump" to keep you interested in coming back fromt the commercial...only it's the OUTCOME of the cliff hanger.

This drove me NUTS!!! It's like someone telling you plot points from a movie you haven't seen yet.

Shit...sorry for taking up so much space...I got on a roll. :)

1/20/2006 8:29 PM

Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

Sorry, but all TV has become crap. They play to the lowest common denominator, the mouth breathers (easy to spot on the road, they'll have a number three sticker on the back window). You can almost feel brain cells slashing their wrists in an attempt to make the pain go away as you watch.

The other problem is I pay for TV and then have to sit there while they try to sell me crap on what I believe is "my time". Even worse are the channels that just sell crap. The Satellite (and cable) companies always make a big deal out of how many channels you get, but fail to tell you most of them are shopping channels, Jesus Knows Best, or in Spanish. What fucking country do they think I live in?

I should cancel it all, but I need my CNN fix with the Stepford News girls (they are hot!!) who smile while they tell you how many soldiers were killed in Iraq. Pull the plug. That is the only way to go. If enough folks do that maybe the networks would give it up, or put on more Novellas…

1/22/2006 9:50 PM

Blogger Sarah Letnes said...

Kyu--the "bumps" make my husband so mad he feels the need to talk to the tv, consequently, they annoy me.

Phos--This morning I was watching CNN and one of the Stepford reporters had some kind of mole or piercing just below her eyebrow. It was driving me crazy!

1/23/2006 11:12 AM

Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

I am surprised she hasn;t been fired for being marred, like Disney used to fire dudes that grew moustaches or liked to park it in the rear.

1/23/2006 8:33 PM

Blogger the Alpha John said...

Cursed Tongue, Blog Author

Dear Ms. Cursed Tongue,

While our Jewish writers would love to write out two Yellow characters for whom they have trouble week in and week out writing dialog for, we feel this would end their current relationship with the Korean Deli owners they get their morning bagels and coffee from.

Rest assured, while we want you to know what the characters are saying to each other, we'd prefer you got rid of that yellow nasty going on in your grille.

If you would like to catch what you missed, we encourage you to download the episode you just watched from the iTunes music store and line both Apple's and our pocket with $1.99.

Hugs and kisses on all your pink parts,
Anne Sweeney, Corporate Tool

1/23/2006 10:27 PM

Anonymous Annie said...

Sun and Jin were just jawing about how much they miss those Crest Whitestrips they had back home in Seoul, so you can rest assured that you didn't miss much.

1/24/2006 8:14 AM

Blogger Sarah Letnes said...

It's not nasty or yellow. It's cheetos.

1/24/2006 9:26 PM


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