Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Can TV Make You Cry?

I read in The Times last week that watching the Antiques Roadshow makes Ed Balls cry.  What, bully-boy Balls?  Surely not.  This led me to ponder the effect of other soaps on the emotions.

I'm rapidly reaching the stage where watching old re-runs of "Friends" is liable to make me cry.

Now the golden girls and boys  are receding farther into the depths of history, well, the last century, anyway.    "Golden boys and girls all must, like chimney sweepers come to dust..."

The guys have all aged terribly, and look, well, old.  The girls, at some cost, have maintained their appearance of 10 years ago.  Reputedly, Jen has had work done on at least three major areas of her body, and that excludes skin and hair colour.  Sadly, both Jen and Courtney have a broken marriage behind them.  CC managed to give birth, but Jen is showing signs of increasing desperation in the husband and baby departments.

It's the innocence, though, that creates the pathos of those early episodes.  The actors were as young as their characters, and none knew what lay ahead.  Beautiful girls thought that it was the norm of life to have young men hanging on their every word, and behaving like lap-dogs.  Little did they know that this was just a short-lived phase in life, and that it would get harder.  Little did they know, when they threw tantrums or displayed unbelievable insensitivity and self-centredness, that eventually, these behavioural characteristics would only bring refusals and obstruction, not the desired goal of their own way.  The bank of tolerance gets spent up.

I find it hard to analyse what makes me want to cry. Is it because I have just about exhausted the bank of tolerance, but find myself still hanging in there?  Is it because much of the credit is due to my long-suffering husband?

Is it because my life hasn't shaped up that badly, after all, though not an international star?  Or is it because that golden time is even further back in my past than it is for the cast of "Friends"?


  1. I can't criticise - I get misty eyed at TV ads these days!

  2. I cried at every episode of "Little House on the Prairie", and I was only ten. That was just the beginning of my weepy career with media. I cried all the way through "Bridges of Madison County" (the book) (and the film). The Oreo commercial where the dad waits up for his daughter to come home? At least two wads of Kleenex to get through that one. Don't even get me started with "Legends of the Fall" or "Out of Africa"...

    HUGE weeper, me.

    Also, can't listen to the national anthem of South Africa without bawling, Dolly Parton's "I Will Always Love You", or "Amazing Grace" on the bagpipes.

  3. Oh yes, Little House on the Prairie made me cry. And music. I cried when the X-Factor winners sang "Silent Night" last weekend.