In a conversation with a friend this morning, the topic of watching TV shows came up. My friend felt a but bad about watching shows such as Grey’s Anatomy and Lost, feeling like it was wasting time that could be used for walking in the woods, or reading a book. My response was that I think these TV shows serve the purpose of including us in the daily dramas of a community. We desire to watch these shows when we’re desiring more of a sense of beng a part of a community, which includes all these little sub stories and character dramas that we get from TV shows.
This is similar to my view of films, which are our modern equivalent of the tribal oral story teller. We evolved over countless ages with myths, legends, and stories, all told orally. Today, we are missing that, and in its place, we have film. Film offers us our creation myths, our social teachings, a sense of who we are within our society, role models, a guiding principles.