In this witty and candid perspective on American television, the Pulitzer Prize–winning critic Howard Rosenberg traces a disturbing pattern: TV's relentless pursuit of the mundane in its seeming quest to dumb-down America. And, he writes, it may be succeeding. How else to interpret the onslaught of look-alike, deceptively titled "reality" shows that have transformed much of prime time into a cratered moonscape? The longer mediocrity endures, Mr. Rosenberg advises, the greater the chance we will become permanently desensitized to it—and seduced by it—making third-rate the standard. He finds occasional heroes but more often rogues. Many of his essays in Not So Prime Time relate to television news, which the author charges has failed dismally in its shrilly self-proclaimed role as a Bethlehem star of enlightenment, its influence continuing to widen in circles that value tabloid over truth. He finds it hard to say, in fact, whether there is more "reality" in Survivor or in a typical newscast on CNN, the Fox News Channel, or MSNBC. News and entertainment now mingle on TV as intimately as singles snorting up together at a cocktail party, becoming interchangeable, with newscasts cross-dressing as theater, and vice versa. Not So Prime Time records how this has happened—not overnight; the crud has been creeping forward for years. Oh the horror.
About Howard Rosenberg
See more books from this Author
Published July 14, 2004
by Ivan R. Dee.
Political & Social Sciences, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography.