“Murder” Shows

I like to watch “murder shows.” (At least that is what quanta calls them.) These are fictional shows like Law and Order, CIS and Murder She Wrote, as well as real-life shows like American Justice, City Confidential and Cold Case Files. I’m not sure why I like to watch them. I don’t like blood; I think killing people is wrong; and seeing someone victimized is just awful. Yet, for some reason, I am completely drawn in by these shows.

Yesterday afternoon I was sitting on the sofa, typing away on my laptop, watching Detective Beat on A&E. While listen to two detectives trying to discover the identity of a body, I was surfing the web looking at Wiccan websites and my cat was snuggling next to me begging for a head scratch. Then it came to me: Why am I watching a show like this? What does it add to my life? I know people are killed all over the world, often for stupid reasons. I’m aware of that, so why am I constantly watching shows about it. I’m on a news fast to get away from stuff like this, so why watch TV shows about?

I wonder if I can grow spiritual and learn about myself if I am obsessed with watching “murder shows.” What do they add to my life? Could my time be better spent doing something else? I think so.

  1. I’ll confess to being quite fond of Law and Order myself. One thing that I have to add to the deeper question though is this: while there are always better things to do than pure recreation, you sometimes have to take the time to relax the mind.

    Think of it this way: does a body-builder lift weights all the time? Both living the ultra-fit life and leading a spiritual life are lifestyle choices, ones that require complete devotion. But, just as a body-builder doesn’t exercise all the time, and occasionally indulges in a bit of chocolate ice cream, you shouldn’t feel guilty for watching a bit of Law and Order.

    As with all things, moderation is key. Too much silly TV, just like too much chocolate ice cream, is a bad thing. But the consumption, in and of itself, can’t be considered bad.

  2. Ah, but I didn’t say TV in and of itself was bad. I just think watching those “murder” shows is a bit counterproductive for me right now. That’s not to say I’m not going to watch The Simpsons, Trading Spaces, Antiques Roadshow or some good educational TV now and then (okay, daily).

    I get depressed watching shows (fiction or non) where someone is murdered. I know it happens, and I’m not trying to hide from it, but I don’t think it makes good entertainment for me anymore, even if the murder is caught in under sixty minutes.