to watch or not

I’ve been feeling excited about exploring archaeology and history online with documentaries Nick and I have found on YouTube but at the same time I’m feeling uneasy about watching so much visual material lately. I stopped watching television a bunch of years ago, around when I left working for CBC Television. I’d been so angry and frustrated with feeling how much manipulation goes on when putting visuals together with music and sound. I hated when I could see the obvious clues…I’m supposed to cry here, feel cheated there, be frozen with terror somewhere else, and even though I could see I was meant to feel those things, I felt them anyway, in spite of myself. I didn’t like crying at the improbable happy end of an intense story. I didn’t like feeling fooled.

And now, after more than 10 years, I find myself interested in these fact-based documentaries and wondering again about how much I’m not being told, and how much I’m being led to believe. There’s no question but that I can understand and enjoy an awful lot of information presented this way. It’s faster than reading a book and often more vivid. And what’s wrong with enjoying oneself while learning? Knowing how much can be left on the cutting room floor, though, I often go searching on the internet afterwards for more information, but I usually find it’s not as instantly exciting. But maybe that’s because the subject is not one of my true, deep interests. I lack the necessary surrounding information to provide the story. I’m not sure. We’ve been enjoying watching the various series that Francesca Stavrakopoulou and Neil Oliver have been working on, and I guess I’ll keep on watching until I figure out why not.

#documentary #television #entertainment #manipulation


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