Showtime recently premiered a new series about the seven deadly sins. For those of you not in the know, these include lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy, and pride. As evidenced by the show’s first episode on gluttony, these sins can get pretty heavy (pun intended). And I for one do not have it in me to worry about one more serious issue. So I’ve decided that when it comes to this whole eternal damnation thing, I’ll just keep a positive attitude. As David Bowie sings in Labyrinth…“It’s only forever, not long at all.”
Although I’ve decided not to dwell on the seven deadly sins, and the very graphic punishments that are described for each, the concept is very catchy—hence the movie Se7en, the new TV show, and the fact that these sins have been talked about for hundreds of years. So I started to think about a lighter, less scary version. A version where if you commit one of these sins, you’re annoying, but you get to skip the fire and brimstone. So without further ado, I present the seven deadly sins of television:
- Skepticism: Executives who have no faith in shows and cancel them before they’ve had a chance to build an audience. To the executives who canceled The Secret Circle and Carnivàle, shame on you.
- Spoilage: People who tell you what happened in an episode before you’ve had a chance to watch it. Between recording shows and streaming content online, we’re not all on the same page — at the same time — anymore…so keep your trap shut.
- Pride: People who brag about not owning a television (you’re not better than I am!). Maybe I’m using my TV to watch Stephen Hawking lectures or TED Talks. I mean I’m not, but I could.
- Sullenness: Actors who take themselves too seriously. Look, not to take anything away from your “craft”, but let’s keep it real.
- Talkers: People who talk during my stories. I care very much about the thoughts and feelings of my loved ones…just not while I’m watching Mad Men.
- Greed: TV shows that run too long. Having a hit show must be amazing; between the adoring fans and crazy amounts of money, no one can blame you for wanting the show to last forever…but it can’t.
- Lust: Actors who date their costars. Writers work really hard to create fictional worlds filled with complicated relationships, and I invest a lot of energy into caring about those relationships. So please don’t spoil the illusion. (This goes double for costars who play siblings on their show.)
There you have it, the seven deadly sins of television. Now go forth, and share your wisdom with others. And maybe, just maybe, one day we will live in a world where everyone proudly owns a television and people only talk during commercials.