Stop Saying TV Is Better Than Movies

Summary

Slate fires back against what writer David Haglund calls "a lazy argument." Back to Article

Comments

The Nothing

The Nothing

I finally went to the movies (been probably 3 years) to see the new Superman. Wow, with that shit they served up it'll be a long time before I bother again.

Jul 18 - 02:27 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Since you see movies every 3 years I doubt ANYONE gives a fuck what you think anyway.

Jul 18 - 09:59 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

I said WENT to the movies you jackass. Try a little reading comprehension.

Jul 19 - 12:52 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

touche. lol

Jul 19 - 04:46 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

It's a moot point. Just because you saw one film you didn't like you refuse to go to the theater? It makes no sense, as this would mean you missed quite a few decent films on the big screen. But we're sposed to believe you felt so robbed by Superman you won't go the the movies, it's your loss. Don't expect sympathy on a site for movie lovers.

Jul 19 - 06:06 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Never asked for sympathy, don't want or expect it. I simply made a comment about a film I found very disappointing. You responded without reason, just a nasty comment. You're an insult to the "movie lovers" you mention.

Jul 19 - 10:16 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

No, you are bashing movies in general, and using that film to generalize why it's not worth it to go to the theater. That's my reason for the comment.

Jul 20 - 04:25 AM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Okay, Val. I see your point. I think you're right - I am using one movie I thought to be shit to justify not seeing, in theaters, any others. But with the expense these days and whatnot, a stinker can unfortunately have that effect. But, again, I see your point. No way I could've known your point from your initial response, however.

Jul 21 - 07:38 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

I apologize for the comment, and will also concede movies in general aren't on par with what they used to be.

Jul 21 - 09:02 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

And I apologize for the "jackass" comment. It was a gut reaction. And I don't think you're an insult to movie lovers.

Jul 22 - 06:50 AM

Boss Loss

Merle Stanford

You thought you could score cool points by ripping on Man of Steel, but you have bigger problems making triennial pilgrimages out of your basement.

Jul 19 - 01:24 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Oh, the basement insult. That's original.

Jul 19 - 02:23 PM

dethburger

dethburger hates Flixster

They just re-released The Godfather on the big screen. Didn't see it? Not much of a movie buff then.

Jul 21 - 09:32 AM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Where'd that come from? I saw the Godfather at the Fox Theater in Detroit back in '92, and also saw it on VHS years prior to that. So, try again, I guess, if you're trying to insult me. By the way, being a fan of The Godfather doesn't make you a movie buff.

Jul 21 - 07:41 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

I understand your point but if you dont go to the movies that often i would probably scrutinize your choices better. The movie wasnt getting good reviews and if you a picky about movies then it wasnt probably a good choice

Jul 21 - 11:09 AM

The Nothing

The Nothing

You're right. I just disregarded reviews because I'm a big fan of Superman. And I was personally let down. Sorry that my dislike of the movie has offended so many here.

Jul 21 - 07:42 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

I think Movies have bigger stage to show off disappointment. Also movies tend to ignore there own genre to appeal to a wider audience. For every Big Sci FI Epic thats pretending to be SCI FI (Transformers, Star Trek Into Darkness) you have Television shows that are actually SCI FI (X-files, Lost, Warehouse 13, Star Trek, Orphan Black, Continueum, Doctor Who). It's the "WE NEED THIS MOVIE TO APPEAL TO EVERYONE THAT EXISTS" way of thinking thats making movies so unbearable. TV execs seem to want to appeal to an actual audience that exists which creates better story telling in that Genre. If Game of Thrones were a movie a Studio Exec would have said THIS Demographic isn't going to like this HOLY S%*T moment so lets replace it with Rob Stark taking off his shirt.

Also if anyone wants to argue that Star Trek into Darkness was a Sci Fi movie I'd be happy to read your points. I just don't see it. Running and Jumping solves everything ins't Sci-Fi. It's just not.

Jul 18 - 06:14 PM

John Karpowicz

John Karpowicz

Science fiction is a genre of fiction with imaginative content such as settings in the future, futuristic science and technology, space travel, parallel universes, aliens, and paranormal abilities. I think that about covers it.

Jul 19 - 01:55 AM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Right, I don't think Transformers covered any of that...Star Trek was in the future so there is the one Check. They said they had technology every once in a while but than wouldn't use it but I suppose the technology was still there. I see this new Kirk having a spoon next to his bowl but not using it to eat his cereal I suppose it would still be called breakfast.

Jul 20 - 06:22 AM

Dave Riehl Jr.

Dave Riehl Jr.

With shows like Breaking Bad, Mad Men and Boardwalk Empire, T.V. right now is better than going to the movies.

Jul 18 - 06:16 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Someone didn't read the article.

Jul 18 - 06:28 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

TV is boring.

Jul 18 - 10:00 PM

Dave Riehl Jr.

Dave Riehl Jr.

You two are boring trolls.

Jul 19 - 10:14 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'm just saying. All of those shows were addressed in the article.

Jul 19 - 12:48 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

And you are obviously easily entertained Dave, if cable shows are your thing. Not saying they are all bad but, certainly not as satisfying as a good movie.

Jul 19 - 06:08 PM

dethburger

dethburger hates Flixster

Not at all. Take "The Shield". As good as anything on the big screen. Why is it an either or proposition?

Jul 21 - 09:34 AM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Well it's not, but for the sake of the article itself we are debating it.

Jul 21 - 09:03 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Someone didn't read the article.

Jul 18 - 06:28 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

It is a lazy argument, becuase people shouldn't have to choose. TV is generally cheaper, and it looks it, with less production values and acting talent. HBO started to change that, and AMC has continued the trend. But if we were going by %s, there's still a whole lot of utter crap on TV. Hundreds of channels of it. Is this somehow forgiven because there's a dozen or so great shows every year? Likewise, if we;re talking about movies, if we broaden out the more creative stuff from overseas and indies and award fodder, etc, I suspect you'd end up with more per-hour entertainment than the per-week standard of TV. If you just wanted to limit the discussion to Hollywood output, then, well, I dunno. Is anyone still stupid enough to watch network TV?

Jul 18 - 06:33 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

TV shows will never replace the epic feel of a good movie. Never.

Jul 18 - 10:01 PM

infernaldude

Infernal Dude

Game of Thrones.

Jul 20 - 09:30 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Admittedly well done but, nah. It's a fantasy soap opera.

Jul 21 - 04:26 AM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Since you see movies every 3 years I doubt ANYONE gives a fuck what you think anyway.

Jul 18 - 09:59 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

I said WENT to the movies you jackass. Try a little reading comprehension.

Jul 19 - 12:52 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

touche. lol

Jul 19 - 04:46 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

It's a moot point. Just because you saw one film you didn't like you refuse to go to the theater? It makes no sense, as this would mean you missed quite a few decent films on the big screen. But we're sposed to believe you felt so robbed by Superman you won't go the the movies, it's your loss. Don't expect sympathy on a site for movie lovers.

Jul 19 - 06:06 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Never asked for sympathy, don't want or expect it. I simply made a comment about a film I found very disappointing. You responded without reason, just a nasty comment. You're an insult to the "movie lovers" you mention.

Jul 19 - 10:16 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

No, you are bashing movies in general, and using that film to generalize why it's not worth it to go to the theater. That's my reason for the comment.

Jul 20 - 04:25 AM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Okay, Val. I see your point. I think you're right - I am using one movie I thought to be shit to justify not seeing, in theaters, any others. But with the expense these days and whatnot, a stinker can unfortunately have that effect. But, again, I see your point. No way I could've known your point from your initial response, however.

Jul 21 - 07:38 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

I apologize for the comment, and will also concede movies in general aren't on par with what they used to be.

Jul 21 - 09:02 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

And I apologize for the "jackass" comment. It was a gut reaction. And I don't think you're an insult to movie lovers.

Jul 22 - 06:50 AM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

TV is boring.

Jul 18 - 10:00 PM

Dave Riehl Jr.

Dave Riehl Jr.

You two are boring trolls.

Jul 19 - 10:14 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'm just saying. All of those shows were addressed in the article.

Jul 19 - 12:48 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

And you are obviously easily entertained Dave, if cable shows are your thing. Not saying they are all bad but, certainly not as satisfying as a good movie.

Jul 19 - 06:08 PM

dethburger

dethburger hates Flixster

Not at all. Take "The Shield". As good as anything on the big screen. Why is it an either or proposition?

Jul 21 - 09:34 AM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Well it's not, but for the sake of the article itself we are debating it.

Jul 21 - 09:03 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

TV shows will never replace the epic feel of a good movie. Never.

Jul 18 - 10:01 PM

infernaldude

Infernal Dude

Game of Thrones.

Jul 20 - 09:30 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Admittedly well done but, nah. It's a fantasy soap opera.

Jul 21 - 04:26 AM

King  S.

King Simba

If we're going by quality, there's no comparison. I remember when I first switched from animated series to live action non-sitcom series. Even with some of the most acclaimed series I'd heard about, it took me a while to get used to stuff like weaker acting and dialogue, stiffer camera angles, cheaper look, etc than what you'd see in movies. This is not a slap to TV series, as they simply aren't given the capabilities that movies are. In the time it takes for a single movie to be made, two seasons worth of episodes will be produced. There's no way in a TV series to do 80 takes for a scene the way Fincher does so you can get it just right or to have the level of fluidity in the dialogue you would see in a Scorsese or Tarantino film.

They're two different mediums. Simply put. Comparisons between the two are pretty pointless.

I think what really causes people to claim that TV is better than movies is because with TV there's a stronger relationship between quality and popularity. A lot of the most popular shows are also the best made shows. In other words while people will know a lot of bad movie, with shows what they know will be the good stuff like Breaking Bad or Games of Thrones. This is because movies tend to rely a lot on hype. It's all about getting a massive opening weekend and then even if people don't like the film, it could still end up being a massive success. With TV series you can use hype to get you a lot of viewership with audiences on the pilot, but if it disappoints then it won't sustain that viewership for the rest of the season.

Jul 19 - 01:18 AM

CFM

'schak Attack

Damn King Simba! You on a roll dude! Again: Post of the Day.

Jul 19 - 09:27 AM

IrreducibleKoan

Sean Pak

THIS! I will paraphrase what you said because it's an important point worth repeating: with television, popularity tends to match up with quality. The most popular shows are the best, so television *seems* better to more people. For movies, the majority of the film-going public don't watch the best films, if they even know about them. All of my friends have seen Man of Steel. About 10% of them have seen Frances Ha.

Jul 19 - 09:24 PM

Rated NCC-1701

Rated NCC-1701

The comparison becomes more careless considering how the best films are usually viewed by a larger audience through televised means (home video, VOD, streaming). Where does moviegoing end and couchpotatoing begin?

Jul 19 - 11:41 PM

John Karpowicz

John Karpowicz

Science fiction is a genre of fiction with imaginative content such as settings in the future, futuristic science and technology, space travel, parallel universes, aliens, and paranormal abilities. I think that about covers it.

Jul 19 - 01:55 AM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Right, I don't think Transformers covered any of that...Star Trek was in the future so there is the one Check. They said they had technology every once in a while but than wouldn't use it but I suppose the technology was still there. I see this new Kirk having a spoon next to his bowl but not using it to eat his cereal I suppose it would still be called breakfast.

Jul 20 - 06:22 AM

CFM

'schak Attack

Damn King Simba! You on a roll dude! Again: Post of the Day.

Jul 19 - 09:27 AM

Dave Riehl Jr.

Dave Riehl Jr.

You two are boring trolls.

Jul 19 - 10:14 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'm just saying. All of those shows were addressed in the article.

Jul 19 - 12:48 PM

John Matrix

John Matrix

It is an incredibly lazy argument. Whenever I hear people make it, they usually compare the best of TV (smart, ambitious dramas like Breaking Bad)to the worst movies out at the moment(big budget Hollywood schlock like Man of Steel). It's such an unbelievably dumb, flawed argument that I can't believe professional critics make it and take it seriously. It's like saying comic books are better than novels because Watchmen is better than Fifty Shades of Grey.

Jul 19 - 10:49 AM

scifimark

scifi mark

I really enjoy tv shows that have a long story arc to them. I think one advantage that tv does have is that characters can really be fleshed out where in movies you are limited by time contraints. One of the disadvantages is when a tv show has been on for more than 3 years the shows sometimes fall into plot and continuity issues. Usually thats caused by writing changes. Usually most shows go through a lot of writers within the running. Ive never really compared the two because they are different media but each has its strengths and weaknesses.

Jul 19 - 12:13 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

You probably love Game of Thrones then, 5 books later and it still doesn't seem to have gone anywhere. Supposedly two more books on the way. Now that's a long story arc.

Jul 20 - 07:47 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

yea. lol. Its up there with harry potter and the dark tower.

Jul 21 - 11:07 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'm just saying. All of those shows were addressed in the article.

Jul 19 - 12:48 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

I said WENT to the movies you jackass. Try a little reading comprehension.

Jul 19 - 12:52 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

touche. lol

Jul 19 - 04:46 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

It's a moot point. Just because you saw one film you didn't like you refuse to go to the theater? It makes no sense, as this would mean you missed quite a few decent films on the big screen. But we're sposed to believe you felt so robbed by Superman you won't go the the movies, it's your loss. Don't expect sympathy on a site for movie lovers.

Jul 19 - 06:06 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Never asked for sympathy, don't want or expect it. I simply made a comment about a film I found very disappointing. You responded without reason, just a nasty comment. You're an insult to the "movie lovers" you mention.

Jul 19 - 10:16 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

No, you are bashing movies in general, and using that film to generalize why it's not worth it to go to the theater. That's my reason for the comment.

Jul 20 - 04:25 AM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Okay, Val. I see your point. I think you're right - I am using one movie I thought to be shit to justify not seeing, in theaters, any others. But with the expense these days and whatnot, a stinker can unfortunately have that effect. But, again, I see your point. No way I could've known your point from your initial response, however.

Jul 21 - 07:38 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

I apologize for the comment, and will also concede movies in general aren't on par with what they used to be.

Jul 21 - 09:02 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

And I apologize for the "jackass" comment. It was a gut reaction. And I don't think you're an insult to movie lovers.

Jul 22 - 06:50 AM

Boss Loss

Merle Stanford

You thought you could score cool points by ripping on Man of Steel, but you have bigger problems making triennial pilgrimages out of your basement.

Jul 19 - 01:24 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Oh, the basement insult. That's original.

Jul 19 - 02:23 PM

The Nothing

The Nothing

Oh, the basement insult. That's original.

Jul 19 - 02:23 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

touche. lol

Jul 19 - 04:46 PM

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