Over the past month, I’ve taken to watching an occasional cheesy, feel-good movie on a certain well-known television channel. While I don’t spend a lot of time watching tv, every now and then, I turn on this channel just to get my “fix” with one of their very predictable movies.
Christmas is a good time to tune in because they have a number of good holiday movies, and they repeat them often enough that if you miss a good part, you can catch up the next day.
Needless to say, when my kids came home from Christmas with their father, I had been watching these movies, and I continued to watch when they were home. Initially, the kids would pick on me—and on the movies—relentlessly. But then my daughter warmed up. Even though she still had lots of complaints about the acting, the predictable story lines, the staged settings, etc., she could see some of the good points, as well. Perhaps she even liked the feel-good ending of all these movies….
The other night, as she and I watched a new movie, W began to comment on all of the problems he noticed.
“That’s some great acting there,” he commented in a tone that dripped with sarcasm.
“We don’t expect great acting,” I informed him. “Just a cheesy, feel-good movie.”
“I bet I can tell you how it’s gonna end,” he continued.
“So can I,” I replied. “That woman right there,” I pointed to the screen, “Is going to end up with the guy in that last scene. And… I knew that in the first five minutes of the movie.”
“You know,” he ventured. “I think I’m going to start a new channel. My channel will entertain viewers with movies where nothing turns out right and nothing ends up all nice and tidy. The guy and the girl will never get together.”
“You’re not likely to get many people to watch,” I informed him, though in the back of my mind, I considered whether this was true.
“They’d all be first time watchers,” he informed me. “They would think they were getting a movie with a nice, happy ending, but nothing would turn out well in the end.”
“And they’d all be so shocked by the ending, no one would watch a second time,” I informed him. However, I later realized that people might watch again just because they wouldn’t believe that all the movies would end badly. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized there might just be a niche market for this type of programming.
Creating these movies might not be a good strategy to reel in the viewers like me, but train wreck tv is a thing. It’s generally a reality tv thing, but who’s to say these same viewers might not want to watch a movie every now and then? I think he might be on to something.