The Changing Face of Television

The Changing Face of Television

The way we watch television has changed a lot, even in the past two or three years.  That’s pretty much what the writer’s strike is all about.  But that’s not what I’m talking about here.  I’m talking about TV from the consumers’ end.

Growing up in Los Angeles, we had the three networks, ABC, CBS and NBC.  We also had four independent stations, KTLA (channel 5), KCAL (channel 9), KTTV (Now FOX, channel 11), KCOP (channel 13) and the PBS station (channel 28).  Television stayed the same for decades.

Then in the 90’s, Paramount launched its own network as did Warner Brothers.  Paramount died, and the WB became the CW.

Then came cable television – that’s a whole lot more complicated than I want to get into right now.  Suffice to say that the advantage of cable channels was that it opened up the market to niche interests.  Remember waking up to Saturday morning cartoons?  Now you could have cartoons 24/7 on Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and The HUB/Discovery Kids.  Sci Fi nerds like me got the Sci Fi channel (now SYFY because they couldn’t copywrite Sci Fi).

About fifteen years, ago we got Dish Network.  We loved our Dish Network because we could get the New York feed as well as the Los Angeles feed, which meant we could start watching the Toonami anime block on Cartoon Network at 9:00 pm instead of midnight on Fridays.

But cable got expensive, then internet go expensive, so we dropped all that for…wait for it…

Netflix started a new service. Instead of renting movies to you by mail, they started streaming over the internet.  Then they started creating original content.  Then the studios got the idea they could do the same thing.  Disney had decades of family movies, cartoons and tv shows in their catalog.  So, if you want family entertainment, subscribe to Disney+.  And then they bought Pixar, Lucasfilm, Marvel, the Muppets and 20th Century Fox.  So, if you like Star Wars, subscribe to Disney+.  Of course, if you like Star Trek, subscribe to Paramount+.

We have both.

But wait, there’s more!

If you have a smart TV, there are a whole bunch of free streaming services you can subscribe to.  Generally, they run older shows, but a lot of them have original content as well.

On Tubi, we have been watching “Red Dwarf” from the BBC, and watching a lot of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson shows like the original, “Thunderbirds”, and the new, “Thunderbirds are Go”, “Stingray” and “Fireball XL5”.

Crackle has anime like “One Piece” and “Naruto”.  A lot of these free services have anime.  You just have to go through them to find the anime you want.

And Freevee has everything from “Rowen and Martin’s Laugh-In” from the 60’s to “Lexx” from Canada.

So, in a way, we’re back to where we started.  We have the majors with original content like Disney+, Paramount+, HBO Max and Amazon Prime, and the minors with reruns like Tubi, Crackle and Freevee.

And in the meantime, sales of DVDs came and went.



172nd blog completed.

First Steampunk novel:  74406 words.  <– Past 74,000.  Goal:  80,000.

Second Steampunk novel: 783 words.

Second Steampunk screenplay:  157 pages.

First Steampunk screenplay:  Need to update with notes from the novelization.

Third Steampunk screenplay:  38 pages.

“Dennis has always been fond of custard.  Usually, he gets the Bird’s Custard Powder from Gelsons.

Although the English like their custard more liquidy – all you Dr. Who fans think fish fingers and custard.  To get a more pudding consistency, Dennis doubles the powder and sugar in the recipe on the canister.

Then Dennis found this homemade custard on Facebook,

This was good, but maybe not quite as good as the Bird’s Custard.  Perhaps a little experimenting with adding some more sugar.  Worth another try.  But now Dennis just discovered a recipe for Amish Baked Custard.  I guess I know what the next dessert experiment is going to be.” – Vincent Reinhart

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