Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Endless Commercial

A few Saturday nights ago, my boyfriend, Jim, and I watched "Saving Private Ryan" on TNT.
"More movie, less commercials" boasted the station's tagline. You mean "Fewer" I muttered upon noticing it, but two hours later, grammar was the least of my objections to the phrase.
The problem is, the only time you don’t see that tagline is DURING the commercials.

What this grossly misleading phrase really means: fewer commercials from the other guys, but one long, omnipresent commercial for the friendly station that's bringing you the movie–a station that insists on reminding you of its existence for every second of the film it's showing you.

Now whatever you might think about the merits of "Saving Private Ryan," it’s a movie that deserves better than to have its every frame branded with a broadcaster’s advertising.

TNT isn't the only station that does this. Recently, I watched enough of "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" to ascertain that E! is among those who routinely violate the cinematic integrity of the films they show by plastering logos on them for the entirely length of the broadcast.

Yet another reason to watch movies where they were designed to be shown–or at least on DVD.

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