The joy of the TV series box set

On any given morning of the week, the talk among reporters in this particular newsroom will work it s way round to the box set or tv series of the moment.

We tend, on reflecting on the evening before, to dissect the latest BBC or Sky phenomenon and unofficially rate them in our own way, usually with language which wouldn’t make it into the paper. I heard a former Derry Journal editor describe ‘Game of Thrones’ as “soft porn for intellectuals” on Thursday morning. I’m not a Game of Thrones fan myself but I’ve been totally gripped by BBC’s ‘The Fall’ over the last few weeks.

Most of us, in the ‘thirty something with children’ bracket, will identify with the feeling of absolute joy at discovering a new tv series.

A friend who’s due to have her second baby in the next few weeks jokingly told me the other day that her husband had decided this would be their ‘West Wing’ baby, their first child had been born and enjoyed her early weeks against the backdrop of the Soprano’s.

Anyone who’s known the joy of childbirth will also know that the only thing there is any energy whatsoever for in the weeks which follow, are watching tv. When you have something great to watch, it’s a huge bonus.

Most of us at the point in our lives where we’re holding down jobs and having just about enough to pay the mortgage know too what a victory it is to really get into a series where all you have to post 9pm when babies are in bed is hit select on the Sky Plus remote and have episode after episode of entertainment at your fingertips. I know I am not alone in this enthusiasm for the series link button.

There are no ads, no interruptions, and no time constraints. This is the automatic washing machine of my generation. It has revolutionised our lives.

Living south of the Border where everything is more expensive and to have a night out costs about a third of the average weekly wage, we’re particulary fond of a decent television drama.

In the boom times we went to the cinema, we had meals out, we had nights out, we had foreign holidays. Now, we have box sets, and we swap them with the same enthusiasm we shared for stickers during our childhoods in the eighties.

We actually dread them coming to an end. That of course means we must seek out another more than mediocre series for consumption.

Himself and myself have just finished watching ‘Extras’ the genius work of Ricky Gervais.

Gervais of course doesn’t do the flogging of dead horses and goes out on a high with one or two seasons. He really didn’t consider that we might depend on that genius to cure our midweek blues. After all, a good tv series is the social saviour of the working parent.