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TV Shows Comments


By Gary F. Zeolla

Periodically I will post a comments about TV shows I watched on my Facebook page. These are always from a Christian perspective. But for those who are not friends with me on Facebook, I figured I might as well also post them here. I am posting comments retroactively from the past year, and will post new comments when I make them.

“Ironside” was a 1967–1975 NBC television series that starred Raymond Burr as a paraplegic detective. I only vaguely remember it. But what from I remember, it was a relatively family friendly show, with only mild violence and little sex. Ironside himself was a middle-aged, somewhat chubby white guy, with a rough, but not unpleasant personality.

Well, NBC is remaking “Ironside.” The premier is next Wednesday, but it was already available on my cable company’s “OnDemand” service. So I tried watching it last night. But the new series is nothing like the original.

First Ironside is being played by Blair Unhderwood. He’s middle-aged, but a rather muscular black guy with a violent personality. And in the opening scene, he uses that muscle to torture a suspect to reveal where he hid a kidnapped girl. Happy ending in that they found the girl, but the “interrogation” was very brutal and definitely police brutality. The show then had several more very violent scenes. Then Ironside engages in a rather explicit sex scene with his girlfriend. That was when I shut it off.

Why is it, every time TV today remakes an older TV series, they completely change the nature of the main character, and add in lots of violence and sex that was not in the original? Bottom line, I most definitely do not recommend this remake.

With watching so much of the Olympics (see TV Sports Comments), I hadn’t been watching much regular TV of late. So last night I just got around to watching the pilot for “Star-Crossed” that aired a couple of weeks ago. It’s a new sci-fi series on The CW set in 2024. The most interesting part is seeing what the producers think technology will be like in ten years.

 But one disturbing thing though was they showed a high school class reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. And they very noticeably omitted the words “under God.” I guess the producers are assuming that in ten years the atheists will have won and gotten those important words removed from the Pledge, or maybe they’re promoting the idea. Either way, very-disheartening, but it is the direction this country is going.

I have been watching several TV series on ABC Family Channel. The reason I’ve been doing so is they have shows that are not about cops, lawyers, or doctors, like just about every scripted series on every other network. But I am now swearing off all shows on the network. The reason is, the promotion of immorality has just gotten to be too much: teenage sex, homosexuality, teenagers lying to parents, teenagers trying to handle adult issues without involving adults, criminal behavior by teenagers, teenagers lying to each other, bullying each other, breaking hearts, all with total disregard for the feelings of their peers.

If I were a parent I would block this network. It teaches impressionable teenagers values that are completely contrary to Christian values. I know series on other networks can be just as immoral, but what makes this network so egregious is it has the name “family” in its name but is anything but family-friendly, and its shows are directed towards teenagers.

I know, I should just swear off TV in general, but due to my health problems, I have no choice but to lie down and rest and watch TV for far more than I care to admit. But that is why I have been posting about how anxious I am for the baseball season to start. Once it does, I’ll have lots of truly family friendly and exciting TV to watch for the next six months, or if things go the way for the Pirates I hope they do, the next seven months!

Is it wrong for a Law Enforcement Officer (LEO) to go undercover? Think about it, to do so requires the LEO to lie about who he is, his occupation, his background, everything about himself, along with lying about the reasons for where he is and what he is doing. And if it’s a female LEO, she will very often dress and act in a sexually provocative manner in order to “distract” a male suspect, making it more likely for him to make a mistake, so the LEOs will have cause to arrest him.

So the question is, is it wrong to lie, deceive, and use sexuality to attain a greater good?

I’m asking this as this is basically the storyline in the Book of Judith, one of the “extra” books found in Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Bibles as compared to Jewish and Protestant Bibles. Judith is described as being a “devout” women, yet she goes undercover and engages in such behaviors to try to deliver Jerusalem from being sacked by Nebuchadnezzar’s army.

I’m making this comparison as this week, as I have been translating Judith, I just happened to watch the March 30, 2014 episode of “The Mentalist” (titled “Violets”). In it, Patrick Jane and his FBI unit engage in a sting operation to catch a gang of art thieves, one of which is also a murder. To do so, requires the entire unit to go undercover (including the two female agents) and to act in the manner described. And the similarities between this episode and Judith are striking.

These are the type of questions that need to be answered in deciding on whether these “extra” books are inspired by God or not, and thus whether they should or should not be included in the Bible. But to make such a decision requires actually reading the books. That is why I am translating these books, in order to provide a literal, modern-day English translation of these books, as such does not currently exist. For more about my translation of the Old Testament and Apocrypha, see ALT: Old Testament.

Another TV series bites the dust. This time it’s “Parenthood.” I liked the series as it was about “ordinary people,” and not just cops, lawyers, and doctors. But this season it seemed like all these ordinary people cared about was sex, sex, and sex (pre-marital and extra-marital), so I almost stopped watching it a while ago.

Then in the Season Finale, “Haddie” came back from college, with a female friend in tow. I kind of knew what was coming, but I gave it a couple of minutes to be sure, then shut it off. I didn’t want to watch yet another TV episode about a teenager “coming out” to his or her parents. So I deleted the episode and the series recording. So frustrating.

“It Takes a Church” is a new series starting tonight on GSN after the American Bible Challenge. It’s a dating show, which I don’t normally watch. But this one has a twist: a single person’s church plays matchmaker for him or her. That might be interesting, so I will at least watch the first episode. I want to support a secular network that is trying out producing Christian shows.

These comments are continued at TV Shows Comments: 2015.


The above messages were first posted on my Facebook page on the indicated dates
and then were posted on this Web site.

Ethics, Spirituality, Christian Life
Ethics, Spirituality, Christian Life: TV and Movies

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