What is it with TV shows about food? I recently got a digital converter from my cable company (so I could keep viewing a couple of the PBS stations I like on my ancient TV), and it seems I can now get a whole bunch of new channels, including the Food Network.
After giving up on the Food Network when it got so mass-market commercial a number of years ago, I zeroed right in on it this time since I now write about food. I figured I should take an interest.
To my surprise, I find the programming boring. And repetitious. Very boring and very repetitious. First of all, between Food Network and a couple other stations, most of the food shows seem to be about cakes. Making elaborate theme cakes, and very carefully moving them from place to place, is the gist of it, it seems. Is this a genre? Make a cake and move it?
And often they show one installment of a series after another for, literally, a whole afternoon or evening. There are lots and lots of repeats. No budget for new programming I guess? No interest in, say, actually teaching people how to cook in their homes?
There also seems to be multiple shows featuring men and women with very light bleached hair, cut in a spiky style. Are they related? Is that a food thing? (I don’t hate the look, by the way.) Since the cakes and the bleached spiky hair run together, I’m not sure if these are separate shows or one and the same, since I rarely linger more than a moment on this dull (except for the hair) fare.
When it’s not cakes, it’s a cooking contest – Iron Chef, Top Chef, and so forth. Also not so interesting, as it turns out, especially for an entire evening. Or sagas about fast food and diners or some talking head’s favorite junk food or snack. (That would be a lot more compelling if any of those places were around the corner from me and deliivered.)
Are these shows really about food or are they reality TV posing as food shows? Whatever, this is not interesting programming, and between that and all the repeats, I find it astonishing that Scripps, which owns the Food Network, is actually launching yet another network, the Cooking Channel, soon. Seriously? We need more of this?
Meanwhile, now Comcast tells me it’s a mistake that I get all these channels, and they’re going to pull them if I don’t pony up double my current bill each month. Be my guest. Lidia, here I come!