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The 7 Most Annoying People To Watch TV With
March 14, 2014 9:45 PM   Subscribe


 
Pcft, I can think at least seven more annoying people, the wannabe MSTie, the guy who is on his phone for the best part ( not even tweeting, just bored), the Moralist who thinks all depictions of things in the show are endorsements of the thing, the guy who literally nods off halfway in and then insists they DID NOT and any gaps are due to bad writing, and my personal peeve I live with ..the person who takes bad stories way, way too seriously so watching a bad show like RUINS THIER WEEK and they'll be stone faced eating a sandwhich a day later and then turn to you and say "YOU KNOW WHAT, THAT SHOW WAS REALLY BAD." "yeah it sucked." "I MEAN I CAN'T BELIVE IT, I WASTED A WHOLE HOUR IN THAT.". "yeah it was pretty bad." "WHY ISN'T THE. CREATOR IN JAIL, FOR THEFT, OF TIME."
posted by The Whelk at 9:52 PM on March 14 [42 favorites]


Missing one, my mom's specialty, the one who gets up and wanders around for huge chunks of the show then sits down at the end for the wrapup and complains it doesn't make any sense. She used to want to watch Monk with me, then would sit through the opening, get up and wander around through half the middle where he puts the pieces together, then flop back down in time for the summation and go "I DON'T GET HOW HE KNOWS ALL THIS THAT DOESN'T EVEN MAKE SENSE."
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 9:53 PM on March 14 [40 favorites]


8. My Roommate
posted by XhaustedProphet at 9:59 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


For some reason this list doesn't include Roger.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:59 PM on March 14 [1 favorite]


No, no, you forgot the worst of all, The Narrator.

"Don't go in there! No, don't go innnnnn!"
"Oh look he's going to find out what happened to her now"
"Oh no! She's dead! *gasp*"
posted by Joh at 9:59 PM on March 14 [7 favorites]


I don't get it. That's just the same woman seven times.
posted by hydrophonic at 10:02 PM on March 14 [73 favorites]


I kind of like the narrator, they're watching at least.

The explainer is fucking annoying "oh! Cause he's the killer!""it's funny cause he fell!""Oh I don't think we like her!"

Maybe two sides of the same coin.
posted by The Whelk at 10:03 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


I have four friends who live together and they apparently all watched Breaking Bad together. Three of them are from Albuquerque. I feel bad for the remaining one because I'm pretty sure he had to sit through however many hours there are in that show with "That's right by my house!" every few minutes.
posted by NoraReed at 10:07 PM on March 14 [5 favorites]


It's fun to watch Hannibal with me cause I just make Werid faces and tiny controlled screaming noises until the commercial breaks.
posted by The Whelk at 10:09 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


I'm The Skeptic. "Oh come on, that could never happen."
posted by desjardins at 10:19 PM on March 14 [11 favorites]


My partner is the newb. I am the overreactor. I guess watching TV with both of us must be a special kind of hell.
posted by medusa at 10:19 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


IT'S NOT OVERREACTING, I'M JUST KIND OF INTENSE.

(quit sucking already, Doctor Who)
posted by Space Kitty at 10:20 PM on March 14 [7 favorites]


I'm the worst to watch with in my house because I'll gasp, "NO, CARL! DON'T WALK BACKWARDS" and my previously-shushed family members will take that as a cue that they can start talking about what's going on but then they talk over dialog and I shush them again, all grouchy-like, and then they get mad because "hey, you talked!"...but I think it's because they don't understand my calculated ability to NOT TALK WHEN THERE IS DIALOG.
Seriously though, nothing bad better ever happen to Carl.
posted by chococat at 10:21 PM on March 14 [10 favorites]


What is it when you turn to other people in the middle of the show and say, "That's interesting, because the motif of the teacup suggesting domesticity is actually inverted here into something more like Conrad's 'Call to Adventure.'"

I call myself an English Major.
posted by Scattercat at 10:21 PM on March 14 [25 favorites]


I'm also The Geographer.

"The trees are all wrong for that altitude."
"There's no way this was filmed in Portland. Look at the street patterns."
"What? They drove from Idaho to South Dakota in 5 hours? Please."
posted by desjardins at 10:22 PM on March 14 [45 favorites]


How about "the person that keeps looking at the other viewer whenever anything interesting happens to make sure that person is enjoying it properly?" That's me.
posted by rouftop at 10:22 PM on March 14 [98 favorites]


Scattercat, I long learned to keep all those things ON THE INSIDE AND ON THE INTERNET.

Also THE PERSON WHO KNOWS ABOUT TV PRODUCTION, watching Supernatural reruns and not constantly mentioning the mighty misty pine footrests of ...South Dakota. Or noticing those three sets they have. Or repeated costumes. Whatever.

Granted I once took a three hour trip to visit the exterior location of Buffy's house soooooo..
posted by The Whelk at 10:25 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


I'm admittedly the person who eagerly wants to point out the differences of the tv show/movie and the book it's based off of (like GoT). Seriously, no one cares. Shut up self.
posted by littlesq at 10:31 PM on March 14 [6 favorites]


Watching movies with my fellow, we're often watching something he's seen before, because I grew up without a TV and never went to the movies and am pretty much pop culture ignorant, and he's trying to educate me.

"OMG and this part that's coming up is so awesome!"

"Oh yeah, I love this part so much!"

"You've got to watch this part!"

"This next part is so great!"
posted by mollymayhem at 10:32 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


As I have confessed here before, I am a spoiler addict, and while I rarely blurt out what is going to happen ("He's gonna die now!") I have been guilty of anticipating Big Events by chanting "Here it comes... here it comes... here it comes..." Yes, my ex-wife noted the similarity to having sex...
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:36 PM on March 14 [5 favorites]


17. The Industry Professional

"don't watch TV. make it."
posted by philip-random at 10:37 PM on March 14


I once really pissed someone off by pointing out that, in the movie The Sphere, when they reveal that they were miscommunicating with the titular sphere and it had been saying "Harry" when they thought it meant "Jerry", that would imply all J and E letters in the keyboard-to-sphere mapping were wrong. So all other typed messages to and from the sphere should swap J for H and E for A ... Rendering them gibberish.
posted by axiom at 11:00 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


What about the person who watches the show every week but doesn't know what any character is named
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 11:02 PM on March 14 [10 favorites]


I'm the terrible, terrible person who can no longer wait for credits like a normal geek. I reach for my phone at least once during most shows if I have an attack of Hey It's That Guy or if I have to suffer more than a microsecond of unsatisfied curiosity.
posted by maudlin at 11:03 PM on March 14 [19 favorites]


I'm so much of an Overreactor that it's impossible to actually watch tv with me. I just leave the room at the first heightening of dramatic tension. My movie examples are 1) walking out of Gattaca to sit in the theater lobby and worry about when Ethan Hawke's character was going to get caught 2) never having finished Rushmore (despite trying three times) because omg when is Jason Schwartzman going to get in trouble.
posted by spamandkimchi at 11:03 PM on March 14 [12 favorites]


Is this something I'd need a couch to understand?
posted by LogicalDash at 11:18 PM on March 14 [3 favorites]


18. The person who uses your cat's litter box instead of the toilet.

19. The person who keeps bleeding everywhere after you stab them.

20. The rotting corpse.

21. The person who keeps burning the house down.

Maybe I need to watch TV alone.
posted by poe at 11:24 PM on March 14 [18 favorites]


Poe I think that's what should be on TV, not the other way around.
posted by sieve a bull at 11:43 PM on March 14


My wife is every single one of these except S.O. Sigh.
posted by xammerboy at 11:49 PM on March 14 [1 favorite]


"What? They drove from Idaho to South Dakota in 5 hours? Please."

Whats that you say? The tiny country hamlet of Sioux Falls is not located between and mere hours away from Idaho, the Twin Cities AND Portland?
posted by fshgrl at 11:50 PM on March 14 [2 favorites]


I once really pissed someone off by pointing out that, in the movie The Sphere, when they reveal that they were miscommunicating with the titular sphere and it had been saying "Harry" when they thought it meant "Jerry", that would imply all J and E letters in the keyboard-to-sphere mapping were wrong. So all other typed messages to and from the sphere should swap J for H and E for A ... Rendering them gibberish.

As far as the book goes, the mistake wasn't in the original transmission, but the human interpretation -- the part of the coded text that stated the name was (unconsciously?) garbled by Harry himself, in his pencil-and-paper translation. The entity never repeated its name -- in fact, Harry went out of his way to derail any attempts to request a full name, as the captain had demanded. All further references to the name "Jerry" came from the human crew.

Finding a copy online, I see the movie replaced the handwritten translation with a whizbang computer program, but keeps Harry's foreshadowing refusal to clarify the name. More to the point, the code (and the blink-and-you'll-miss-it shot of the program zipping through it, @60:42) shows it actually decodes "HARRY" while typing out "JERRY." So it's still implying that Harry tampered with the translation, just by subtly tweaking the program instead of writing down the wrong letters.
posted by Rhaomi at 11:51 PM on March 14 [5 favorites]


Here's one I don't see covered: the Identifier.

My SO: Look! That guy on the right! He was a regular on, what was that show?
Me: What difference does it make?
SO: Oh, come on! And that girl, she was in the commercial where they're swimming--
Me: Could be. Can we watch now please?
SO: It is her, but she's had work done. I hardly recognized her.
Me: (leaves to watch other TV)
posted by kinnakeet at 11:56 PM on March 14 [25 favorites]


it's not so much watching TV - but discussing TV.

So - did you see Breaking Bad finale? Brilliant yeah?

Well, I don't actually watch TV.

I hate those people, they always deliver that line in as if they have reached a higher moral plain.

Next day or so you overhear them in the lunchroom. Yeah, Biggest loser has really changed my life.
posted by mattoxic at 12:14 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


Oh god, kinnakeet, that is totally me. It's fine at home because I can pause it and look it up on IMDB or check at commercial, but it drives me CRAZY in movies.

Until I watched a show that he was a regular on, though, it was usually Mark Sheppard.
posted by NoraReed at 12:25 AM on March 15 [6 favorites]


Also, the Surpriser, who refuses to ruin the delight they're sure you'll feel by sharing any information about the genre, cast, or length of the show. You're just supposed to trust them.
posted by cotton dress sock at 12:44 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]




I must confess, NoraReed, I have a habit of identifying the really obscure supporting players in older films, usually in a muttered undertone. "There's Mary Wickes, love her... oooh Chill Wills! Eric Blore is my absolute favorite... can't go wrong with Elisha Cook Jr." I try not to be intrusive, though.
posted by kinnakeet at 1:12 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


The Torontoist. The person who recognizes the stand-in for most American cities.

"Oh look, it's Toronto!"
"Actually it's set in Boston."
"So they remodeled Boston to look like Toronto! And hey, it's Toronto again!"
"It's Brooklyn!"
"Must be Toronto's Little Brooklyn."
posted by happyroach at 1:17 AM on March 15 [23 favorites]


My current status is the person who laughs at most jokes on TV. Not because they're that funny, but to signal that I got the joke.

I'm hoping that this problem fixes itself.
posted by frimble at 1:41 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


They forgot the "Let's turn everything they say into sexual innuendo" person.

Which is me. Most of the time.

"*snort* Yeah, you're gonna solve the crime. You're gonna solve the crime of his ass!"

(But c'mon "I prefer to use my hands"? This is me flailing in delight.)
posted by Katemonkey at 1:42 AM on March 15 [6 favorites]


#8: The cat who keeps demanding your refill the food bowl 'cause they can see the bottom of it in one spot.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:31 AM on March 15 [27 favorites]


I confess: I also do the Identifier thing. It's exacerbated as my SO struggles to recognise anyone from show to show. For example she's watched the whole of the West Wing through about 8 times but won't recognise Martin Sheen in something else. I try to just look people up surreptitiously on imdb on my nexus more but I imagine I am still a pain.

On the other hand, my SO's actual sin is to assume just because she sees films as throwaway then others do too. If I have spent most of three hours watching Once upon a Time in the West while she is out pursuing her hobby I think its pretty reasonable to expect not to have to chat through the last 5 minutes.
posted by biffa at 3:34 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


We've gotten this far into the thread and nobody has said "I guess you would have to watch TV to understand this."

You people disappoint me.
posted by HuronBob at 3:54 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


I guess you need a computer and internet connection to understand whatever the hell HuronBob is talking about.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:56 AM on March 15 [14 favorites]


As a co-viewer, I'm usually pretty mellow verging on nondescript, but there's this one series that used to be awesome and then went to the dogs that turns me into grumpy, whiny, insufferable complainer. "Yeah, like she would do this. Completely psychologically impossible". "He is a crossbow guy, so when he has fired his bolt, all he can use is still a crossbow. What is it, an RPG?" "How am I supposed to remain attached to the characters after they've turned them into a bunch of idiots?" "Aaaaaand... surprise corpse! Jeez, they stopped caring about this series long ago." "I am SO done with this episode! [turns to the monitor, for a minute.]"
posted by hat_eater at 3:57 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


The cat who keeps demanding your refill the food bowl 'cause they can see the bottom of it in one spot.

And then doesn't eat any of it.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:58 AM on March 15 [10 favorites]


#12 My Dad, Trivia King

"IMDB trivia -- they filmed this crowd scene with only 20 extras. They used CGI."

"On the director's commentary she says they filmed the outdoor bits three months after the indoor scene. It's pretty obvious -- look, there, weather changes."

"There's a really great in-joke coming up, you see, there was this lawyer called Steve and the director thought he was like a shark --hey, where are you going?"

...away from you so I can dial back my MURDER THOUGHTS
posted by NoiselessPenguin at 4:31 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


Good lord. Even reading this thread is somehow increasing my blood pressure.

I apparently have strong opinions about people who talk during shows.
posted by kyrademon at 5:01 AM on March 15


#47. The guy who gives a comprehensive plot analysis after five minutes into the show, including a called spoiler of whodunnit then complains about the hackness of most hour long TV drama writing, pointing to various scenes and statements as 'showing the gun in the first act'.

I try to sit really quietly, but sometimes predictable writing kills me.

With that, I was entertained for the whole hour this past week with Elementary - which is probably the least formulaic crime drama put out by CBS.... yes, with a character that has existed since 1887 - this is CBS's least formulaic crime drama.
posted by Nanukthedog at 5:15 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


Here's one I don't see covered: the Identifier.

yeah, that's both me and my husband so at least we entertain each other.

My husband is also a newb AND a nitpicker. Especially a nitpicker. We had a huge fight after the end of Breaking Bad because he wouldn't let me enjoy the emotional payoff, instead choosing to point out every one of the plot implausibilities. I KNOW, all right? I don't care, because Jesse's safe.
posted by gaspode at 5:29 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


They forgot The Stewer Who Finds Fault With How Everyone Watches Television!
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 5:35 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


What about the person who watches the show every week but doesn't know what any character is named

Oh that's me. But it's OK I'm like that with real life people too
posted by ook at 5:43 AM on March 15 [6 favorites]


Me, too, ook! I am absolutely terrible at names, and that doesn't stop when TV becomes involved. I have shows which I've loved, but any conversation with my wife goes like, "I thought it was totally out character when what's-his-name, the tattoo guy, was talking to, uh, the bald guy...you know, the bearded one...about the guy who looks like your brother's friend, whats-his-name."
posted by Bugbread at 5:58 AM on March 15 [6 favorites]


Really, gaspode... I'm just ending season 3 and you just spoiled the whole damn thing....
posted by HuronBob at 6:07 AM on March 15 [10 favorites]


Darth Vader is Luke's dad.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:16 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


I feel like The Crafter should be on there somewhere. It annoys my guy friends when I knit, but I'm paying attention, really! One friend took it to mean that I was too bored.
posted by Calzephyr at 6:35 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


Also, the Surpriser, who refuses to ruin the delight they're sure you'll feel by sharing any information about the genre, cast, or length of the show.

The missus is some inverse variation of this and we hold very different attitudes when it comes to spoilers. Whenever watching a show on DVD, she will carefully read each episode's summary in full before watching it and then blurt out any revelations -- "Oh my god! Paul gets killed in this one!" regardless of whether or not I want this knowledge (hint: I don't).

On the other hand, I am some variation of The Judge because we likewise differ on how many episodes of anything are enjoyable at one sitting. Infamously, the day we discovered Community, she watched the first 32 episodes at one go. Anyone who has met me knows I am a man of considerable laziness, but after about three hours of sitting, I have to get up and do something. (Of course the flip side of this is that I grew up in a city with a very limited range of movies so in 1985, say, rather than go see Police Academy 2 and The Goonies, I would take day trip into Toronto for a movie crawl of Brazil and The Quiet Earth and Dreamchild. She cannot grasp how I could see three different movies in one day. Irony.)
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:38 AM on March 15


If you don't talk during the show, what is the point of watching it together?
posted by LogicalDash at 6:46 AM on March 15 [11 favorites]


To see the same material at the same time, so it's equally fresh on your minds, so that when it's time for a commercial break, or the show ends, you can start talking about it with the exact same knowledge and the same mental place.
posted by Bugbread at 6:48 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


> "If you don't talk during the show, what is the point of watching it together?"

You are, I take it, unfamiliar with the concept of "cuddling"?
posted by kyrademon at 6:55 AM on March 15 [10 favorites]


I am the Designer.
"Like half the stuff in that room came from the children's section at Ikea. Also it's exactly the same stuff as the other kid's room in the last episode, but rearranged"*
"Wow, that newel post is awesome!"
"This house makes no architectural sense, no one would build a house like that"
"That's the same drinking glass the other guy has in his apartment"

Seriously though, Lucky Number Slevin: best wallpapers of any movie ever.

* Law & Order I am looking at you.
posted by Adridne at 6:55 AM on March 15 [9 favorites]


What about the guy who notices prop details and wonders about product placement? As in, while watching Orange is the New Black, "We're 13 episodes in and every single time they show anyone drinking a beer it's Northern Tier IPA. Does everyone in this show like the same beer?" Or, in season 3 or 4 of Weeds, "SURE this is a dinky bar in small-town Montana, that's why the bartender only has bottles of Stone IPA, the same beer they drank in California and Canada (and Michigan and in NYC in later episodes)..."

Come to think of it maybe Jenji Kohan just really likes IPA.

Besides, it was fun to roll my eyes at the scenic foothills in the background of the one shot supposedly showing Minor Character on his way to Detroit Metro airport. Seriously scene scouts are you even trying?
posted by caution live frogs at 7:14 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


I'm the guy who predicts the outcome 15 minutes in - "he saves the cat using X because Y". I'm very irritating.

Gaspode - you ruined Breaking Bad for me too, I was 3 episodes from the end and had heretofore avoided spoilers dammit!
posted by arcticseal at 7:14 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


Adrine:

I am the same way, seriously obsessed with the wall paper in Kate and Allies apartment after a binge
posted by PinkMoose at 7:22 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


I'm probably terrible to watch with; I always try to guess it out and name the "that guy/girl" actors who appear as guest stars
posted by NiteMayr at 7:26 AM on March 15




No mention of the anarchist relative who wants to tell you how you're a stooge of the corporatocracy for supporting professional sports while you try to watch the football game on Thanksgiving?
posted by octothorpe at 7:33 AM on March 15 [5 favorites]


ricochet biscuit, this is what I mean:

"Get ready for this. You're gonna love it."
"Great! What is it?"
"You're just going to love it."
"I'm sure I will, just, kind of roughly, what am I in for?"
"You'll see."
"Is it a comedy, a drama, what?"
"Shh."
"I just -"
"WHY DO YOU RUIN EVERYTHING GOOD???"

An ex, obviously. But it was doomed, because I'm an Explainer/Identifier, or I used to be when I had the patience to watch a thing all the way through. Now I'm Ghostride The Whip's mom.
posted by cotton dress sock at 7:34 AM on March 15


Guys, she doesn't mean Jessie the character. He is slowly tortured until he finds a way a kill himself. She meant the Opie Hitler character played by Jessie Plemmons. That dude skates out with millions in cash and a hot older girlfriend.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 7:35 AM on March 15 [12 favorites]


#54 The Intentional Misinformer. "This must be that really dark episode where Barney stumbles upon evidence of a serial killer in Mayberry and Sheriff Taylor starts drinking heavily as he finally starts emotionally dealing with the loss of his wife."
posted by Pater Aletheias at 7:39 AM on March 15 [11 favorites]


I liked Smallville's "fuck reality" approach to location shots. The majestic forests of Kansas! The towering mountain ranges of Kansas! The gorges of Kansas! The 'hey at least it's canon' metropolis of Kansas!
posted by ook at 7:42 AM on March 15 [6 favorites]


This is all relative. If you're not talking during The Bachelor and you're not on your phone, but you are instead paying careful attention to it, I am worried about you. But if you're talking during something important and suspenseful, I am worried FOR you if you are watching with me. It depends on the show.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 7:50 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


Gaspode - you ruined Breaking Bad for me too

In sincerely hope you're joking because this is a really shitty way to call someone out if not.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 7:51 AM on March 15


What about the person who watches the show every week but doesn't know what any character is named

I'm sorry. I try really hard, but I just can't remember the real name of Smash LampJaw or whether Fitz is the nerdy guy or the geeky girl.
posted by entropicamericana at 7:56 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


How about the Continuity guy....

"look, did you see that... in the last shot his hair was up, now it's down!!! "
posted by HuronBob at 8:00 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


What about the person who watches the show every week but doesn't know what any character is named

I don't know anybody's name. I've seen every episode of Game of Thrones but I doubt that I can name a single character.
posted by octothorpe at 8:04 AM on March 15


I'm the Overly Incredulous Watcher. I never see twists and turns coming, for whatever reason. "Oh my god, Vader is his father?!" "HE's Keyser Soze?!" "Wait, THAT CHARACTER ISN'T REALLY DEAD?!" "Bruce Willis IS dead?!" No idea why, I never do that when I read books, but for some reason my brain compels me to take everything on tv/in movies at face value.

(And yes, I remember essentially nothing about Lucky Number Slevin except that it had the best wallpaper of any movie I've ever seen. Years later it still sticks in my mind for that reason.)
posted by skycrashesdown at 8:07 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


Jesus Christ Gaspode, why don't you just tell everyone that Rust finds hope and becomes the Yellow King after shooting Marty?!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:08 AM on March 15 [7 favorites]


Yeah, gaspode, and that bit where Aloysius discovers the purple whip, what the hell?
posted by h00py at 8:15 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


In sincerely hope you're joking because this is a really shitty way to call someone out if not

It was a spoiler for me too (we're still in the middle of season 5 because it's not bingeable -- we need a week or two to recover after each episode) but I'll survive. Somehow I'll find the strength.

Jesus Christ Gaspode, why don't you just tell everyone that Rust finds hope and becomes the Yellow King after shooting Marty?!

Is that what happened? I read it on the plane the other day but some jokester apparently overwrote the second half of the e-book with part of some random book about the French Revolution
posted by ook at 8:20 AM on March 15


I gave up watching anything with anyone a long time ago. Watching stuff is NOT a social activity. Hell, any activity where the most accepted behaviour is sitting next to someone you supposedly enjoy interacting with and staring silently at some other third thing is in fact aggressively asocial. "Let's go see a movie" = "Let's go somewhere I can pretend you don't exist."

(quit sucking already, Doctor Who)

There's wishful thinking, and then there's outright delusion. It never didn't suck, and it never won't. DTMFA.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:29 AM on March 15


Really, gaspode... I'm just ending season 3 and you just spoiled the whole damn thing....

I read that as Jesus, and it made me want to watch Breaking Bad.
posted by GenjiandProust at 8:34 AM on March 15


I'm so much of an Overreactor that it's impossible to actually watch tv with me. I just leave the room at the first heightening of dramatic tension. My movie examples are 1) walking out of Gattaca to sit in the theater lobby and worry about when Ethan Hawke's character was going to get caught 2) never having finished Rushmore (despite trying three times) because omg when is Jason Schwartzman going to get in trouble.

I thought I was the only one.
posted by Aizkolari at 8:35 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


For those of you interested in watching other people watching TV the UK has this fascinating programme on at the moment called Gogglebox which can be absolutely riveting. It's like the next stage on from The Royle Family.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 8:36 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


My mom will tell you the surprise twist at the end of the movie, extrapolated from a fifteen second teaser trailer.
posted by BrotherCaine at 8:43 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


I don't know anybody's name. I've seen every episode of Game of Thrones but I doubt that I can name a single character.

My SO, an otherwise smart man, can never keep names straight, so any discussion of GoT is all about Evil Dad, Jerk Blonde, Smug Blonde, Evil Blonde, Scheming Redhead, Gay Knight, Tiny Violent Girl, Dragon Lady, Drunk Dwarf, Irish Mom, Cute Confused Man, and Hodor.
posted by The Whelk at 8:52 AM on March 15 [19 favorites]


My mom will tell you the surprise twist at the end of the movie, extrapolated from a fifteen second teaser trailer.

I want to see this as a game show. It could be called "Spoilers," and it would be like "Name That Tune," but with movies. Episodes would last between 90 minutes and 8 hours, and mostly consist of footage of the competitors staring at TVs and muttering to themselves.
posted by GenjiandProust at 8:52 AM on March 15 [5 favorites]


Joking. I'm not that precious that it's spoilt the ending for me.
posted by arcticseal at 8:52 AM on March 15


We need to incorporate movie theater rules when watching television at home.

No talking.

No texting.

No babies.
posted by cazoo at 8:53 AM on March 15


My most hated? The T.V.Troper. Because they never fucking stop reducing everything to those stupid cliches, and they expect you to be happy they let you in on the secret.

No, I don't went to know that the Magnificent Bastard is going to get the Dark Action Girl to do a Heel Face Turn as part of his Xanatos Gambit. You're not doing insightful analysis, so just shut the fuck up already.
posted by happyroach at 8:53 AM on March 15 [5 favorites]


Somebody tried to make me watch that show Heroes once, so I ended up doing that Ghostride the Whip's mom thing for several episodes until I ragequit during a scene where I discovered that the one white guy with the eyebrows was actually three different white guys with the eyebrows and nothing made any sense.

I would now recognize Zachary Quinto as a discrete entity, but I'm still not going to watch that dumb show about the white guys with the eyebrows.
posted by ernielundquist at 8:54 AM on March 15


... and Hodor.

Oh well, I do know Hodor. So I guess that's one.
posted by octothorpe at 9:21 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


No, I don't went to know that the Magnificent Bastard is going to get the Dark Action Girl to do a Heel Face Turn as part of his Xanatos Gambit.

Okay, it's a little bit of a tangent, but you just reminded me of something I found one of the MOST IRRITATING THINGS EVER IN THE HISTORY OF ANYTHING. See, back in the day when the MMORPG City of Heroes was a thing (and may it rest in peace), there was a part of the game that would let the players create missions and small story arcs that everyone else could play. It was an amazingly cool feature, and I cranked out one or two stories myself.

On the game's forums, there were ongoing threads where people would review the user-created missions. Most of the reviews were okay, and fairly well-written--niche MMORPGs tend to attract a reasonably literate bunch--but there was one guy.

One. Guy.

One guy who treated TVTropes as the goddamned Laws of Storytelling. Every single one of his reviews read like the sentence of yours that I quoted, only he was serious. Around the two hundredth time I read the phrase "Idiot Ball" in one of his reviews, I started wanting to shove his face into a wood chipper.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 9:29 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


my SO's actual sin is to assume just because she sees films as throwaway then others do too. If I have spent most of three hours watching Once upon a Time in the West while she is out pursuing her hobby I think its pretty reasonable to expect not to have to chat through the last 5 minutes.

I’m several of these things, according to my wife, and now I come to the blatantly obvious realization that it’s because I just don’t get into TV that much or take it seriously. It’s not that I think all TV shows suck, it just seems that these days the good ones require a big commitment I’m just not willing to make.

Talk during a movie though and I will ask you to leave. Yes, I know you live here too.

My wife is somewhat of a TV fanatic though, so there is friction. I need to quit being a jerk.
posted by bongo_x at 9:58 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


FWIW I'm somewhere between The Identifier and The Liar.

One time my friend came to visit me in Hatfield (ropey New Town outside London where I was at Uni). While we were watching the Robert De Niro film Jacknife I told him that it was was filmed in Hatfield and went to great length to point out certain locations in the film that were nearby (the woods, that place by the railtrack) but that had obviously not been filmed anywhere within 4000 miles from where we were sat.

It took a couple of years for him to figure it out.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 10:20 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


I can definitely be a nit-picker but the strength of my wrath varies depending on how much I like the show. It has been pointed out by my wife that I am more often a jerk watching her shows than mine and I had the wisdom to not exacerbate the dispute by holding that my shows were superior.

My wife can name only a handful of characters from even her most favorite shows yet she is a fervent Identifier. That results into statements like this. "Oh you know who that is, she plays what's her name on that one show that you like but then it all went to hell". The only Game of Thrones characters that she can name are Sansa, Arya, Joffrey, Jon Snow, and of course...Hodor.
posted by Ber at 10:28 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


You know, say what you will about Hodor, but the man stays on message and maintains his brand.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:00 AM on March 15 [34 favorites]


This is basically making me want to resume the binge-watching of Revolutionary Girl Utena I was doing the other week. I put it on hold because my SO was interested in watching some with me, but I didn't want to (a) go back and watch the first 12 eps again or (b) watch ep 13+ with The Noob. Especially because 13 is where the first plot arc wraps up.

In addition to being The Noob for this series, my SO is also the TVTropes Guy*. So there is that to deal with. Mostly, to be honest, by being the Visual Storytelling Professional who will say things like "Wow, they're really doing as little animation as possible this episode. Are they blowing this ep's budget on the fight at the end, or on another ep entirely?". (Often mistaken for, or the evolved form of, the Nitpicker.)

yeah, I think I'm going to sit down and watch some more Utena now. And blog about it.

* Though I'm going to defend that one; he's also my occasional co-writer, and I have seen the power of being able to say "this bit is totally turning into this trope, do I want it to take that route, subvert that route, or veer off in a different direction". TVTropes gives you a whole bunch of finely-categorized boxes in which to put parts of a narrative, and a language for talking about them. If you think that everything has to exactly follow the tropes, you are troping wrong.
posted by egypturnash at 11:33 AM on March 15 [3 favorites]


chococat: "family members will take that as a cue that they can start talking about what's going on but then they talk over dialog and I shush them again, all grouchy-like, and then they get mad because "hey, you talked!"...but I think it's because they don't understand my calculated ability to NOT TALK WHEN THERE IS DIALOG."

If my husband and I ever get divorced, THIS WILL BE WHY. He does not get that you can only talk in the holes!

He's also the OVER-Explainer. I get up to go take care of the kids or something and I come back and say, "What just happened?" And instead of "Bears kicked on fourth and long but Green Bay fumbled the return, Bears ball again" or "The Queen found out about the King's adultery and got pissed, she has a knife" he starts summarizing in a point-by-point play-by-play FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE SHOW OR GAME. It's like a disease. I'm like, "Yes, I was here for that. I was here for that. I WAS HERE FOR THAT. I just want to know what happened in the last 90 seconds!"

I am The Forgetter. "Oooooh, I bet the butler did it." "We saw this episode two weeks ago." "No we didn't, I've never seen this before." "Yes we did, it's not the butler, it's the guy with the mustache, remember?" "OH GREAT WAY TO SPOIL IT FOR ME!" I can never, ever remember having seen an episode of ANY crime procedural before (except the Law & Order where Marcia Gay Harden pleads the 5th, that one I remember, but only because of Marcia Gay Harden) so they're all thrillingly new to me even on fifth viewing. It drives my husband NUTS.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:34 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


I am the Overreactor, but only when a scene involves food. The other day, I was watching an episode of Mawaru Penguindrum with mr. needled, and I gasped and clutched my head in horror when I saw one of the penguins swallowing a very large amount of umeboshi - "Oh no! The sourness! That poor penguin!" All this for some magical invisible cartoon penguin character. Meanwhile. I don't bat an eyelash for outrageous cartoon violence inflicted on human characters. Getting back to food, when I see characters eating delicious looking food I start whining about wanting to eat that food. This gets really bad when I am watching k-drama with their very many scenes of people eating all kinds of delicious Korean food that I can't just go out to get at the ungodly times of the day (night?) I am watching k-drama.

Is there a category for the TV viewer who grumbles and complains about how bad the show is and how they hate all the characters, but continues watching to the bitter end because they have to find out how the plot points get resolved? I do this when watching anime (hello all 24 episodes of Valvrave the Liberator) and k-drama. In contrast I find it easy to stop watching U.S. TV shows that annoy me.
posted by needled at 11:37 AM on March 15 [1 favorite]


My mom predicts the end of every Law and Order episode out loud, to the whole room, 10 minutes in. And then she spends the rest of the episode sighing and rolling her eyes.

Extra infuriatingly, she is usually correct. I've never met anyone as good at spoiling TV shows that they have never even watched.
posted by en forme de poire at 11:56 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


In my ideal universe I'm able to never miss a beat of a tv show while never ceasing the lively conversation about every little thing about it at the same time. I'm a blast, lemme tell you.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:58 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


Is there a category for the TV viewer who grumbles and complains about how bad the show is and how they hate all the characters, but continues watching to the bitter end because they have to find out how the plot points get resolved? I do this when watching anime (hello all 24 episodes of Valvrave the Liberator) and k-drama. In contrast I find it easy to stop watching U.S. TV shows that annoy me.

A lot of people, myself included, were that way with Dexter. I think we learned our lesson.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:59 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


I've heard it's gotten a little better, but I know that compulsively hate-watching The Walking Dead is definitely a thing.
posted by Navelgazer at 12:03 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


hate-watching - that's a great term!
posted by needled at 12:06 PM on March 15


Sorry, I am the worst person in the world to try to watch TV with. "Wouldn't you rather play cards?" "What happened at work today?" "Oh, look, the cat wants to play fetch." "Is it going to be over soon?" "I just don't know how anybody can sit and watch that stuff all evening."

Yep, people have been known to lock me out of the room.
posted by BlueHorse at 12:08 PM on March 15 [3 favorites]


No mention of the anarchist relative who wants to tell you how you're a stooge of the corporatocracy for supporting professional sports while you try to watch the football game on Thanksgiving?

This is usually my twitter feed during football season, a bunch of smug nerds trying desperately to draw attention to themselves by making bad jokes about sportsball and talking about what idiots we are for watching something inundated with corporate sponsorships while they, being rugged outsider individualists, are only buying every DVD box set, action figure, t-shirt, collectible, and video game of their favorite show.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 12:14 PM on March 15 [4 favorites]


My boyfriend and I have a fundamental incompatibility when it comes to TV. I have a very difficult time following visual storylines partly because I'm easily distracted, so when I'm watching something, I AM WATCHING SOMETHING. I need to pay close attention. Fortunately, all the TV I watch is pauseable, so if someone comes around nattering at me, I'll just pause it until they simmer down. The pointedness of my pausing varies, depending on how egregious the interruption is. It took me almost two hours last night to get through a single 50 minute show I was trying to watch.

He, on the other hand, is a background noise guy. When he walks into the house, the first thing he does is turn on the TV, and only then will he start puttering around doing other stuff. It's always on, whether he's watching or not.

Oddly, though, I am a huge predictor and I am really good at it. Maybe because I do pay such close attention to the storytelling. I swear this is true: I completely accurately predicted the big surprise ending to the movie The Baby, including not only the detailed explanation, but the actual reveal shot. I swear I had never seen it or even heard of the movie before that, although I'm not sure the people who were there believed me. I probably wouldn't have. I generally try not to shout things like that out unless they're really, really good.

But because I can't always tell when my boyfriend is actually watching something vs. just having it on as background noise, I'm pretty liberal about doing it with his shows.

I don't know how much that gets on his nerves, but after what he did last night, I hope it's a lot.
posted by ernielundquist at 12:38 PM on March 15


I will absolutely cop to being the Social Mediator. And you know what? I do it because it's fun, so screw you guys. SOB!

I'm just kidding. When I watch TV with other people, I always keep my phone in my pocket. I may stroke it lovingly from time to time when no one is looking, but in the pocket it stays.

(I had a blast last night livetweeting the West Coast feed with my Hannibal-related roleplay account. The more you tweet with the #HANNIBAL tag, the better the show does! Oh god someone please stop me. DON'T STOP ME I LOVE IT.)
posted by ErikaB at 12:50 PM on March 15


The Whelk: Your SO is my SO, except probably not really.

I am the opposite of Newb when we watch the Game of Thrones---we watch with a mutual friend, neither my SO nor friend have read the books, I have, they know I have, so I have had to learn how to be the Iron Poker Face. I'm sure that got irritating at points too, especially when they would sometimes glance at me to see if they could figure out what was coming. Nope.

I'm still waiting for my Oscar in the mail for my performance throughout the entire Red Wedding episode, but no dice.

(More seriously: I know I have the tendency and ability to be The Predictor, especially when it comes to cliched writing. I have not been able to overcome the urge in the past and have blurted out what I knew was coming. I'm working on it.)
posted by seyirci at 12:50 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


My SO, an otherwise smart man, can never keep names straight, so any discussion of GoT is all about Evil Dad, Jerk Blonde, Smug Blonde, Evil Blonde, Scheming Redhead, Gay Knight, Tiny Violent Girl, Dragon Lady, Drunk Dwarf, Irish Mom, Cute Confused Man, and Hodor.

King Of The Guys! (previously)
posted by ActingTheGoat at 12:52 PM on March 15 [4 favorites]


Also a Predictor, partly from an interest in puzzles, and partly from a nearly unstoppable tendency to see TV (not so bad with movies) in metafictional terms--as in, "he must be involved somehow because he's a character actor I recognize, not the nameless extra he seems" or "they gave the mother an unusual amount of screen time, early, so she likely is the killer" or "they emphasized the love of pie, so likely the pie will be significant". Also, I have a hard time not sharing how smart I am about it with my SO, who is much more interested in watching than predicting. (We watch mostly crime shows together, as our other TV interests do not intersect).
Once I predicted the explanation of a crime show in the first few minutes, and SO turned to me and said "Yes, you are very smart. You just ruined it for me. How smart is that?"
I'm trying to be a better person...
posted by librosegretti at 12:57 PM on March 15 [13 favorites]


Once I predicted the explanation of a crime show in the first few minutes, and SO turned to me and said "Yes, you are very smart. You just ruined it for me. How smart is that?"

At which point it was useless to watch the episode so you went out and got ice-cream and rode the carousel?
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 1:13 PM on March 15


Once I predicted the explanation of a crime show in the first few minutes, and SO turned to me and said "Yes, you are very smart. You just ruined it for me. How smart is that?"

But s/he said it like Peter Falk in The Princess Bride, right?
posted by Navelgazer at 1:24 PM on March 15 [3 favorites]


I play games on my phone while I watch tv, otherwise I get restless and need to EAT ALL THE THINGS. At the end of episodes, I complain about how much I hate the show but then eagerly hate-watch it again the next time. I question the feasibility of events (so they go have sex in the back room and she comes out unsweaty, clothes neat, and hair primped? Yeah right). I predict what is going to happen next. I forget names and faces.

Watching tv with me is a riot.
posted by Night_owl at 1:44 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


At which point it was useless to watch the episode so you went out and got ice-cream and rode the carousel?

At which point I began to predict how long and how difficult it would be to make it up to SO, who, being a much more forgiving sort than I, did so quickly.
posted by librosegretti at 3:33 PM on March 15


How do you get people to assume comic form? I've tried to get people to do this but it never works. My apartment is littered the corpses of my failures.
posted by srboisvert at 3:51 PM on March 15 [3 favorites]


So my husband and I keep the closed captioning on no matter what we watch, because it means we can keep track of the plot and keep up our sarcastic commentary.

This irritates my father-in-law to no end, as he hates closed captioning. Except he still likes to make comments, so, instead, the TV has to be on deafeningly loud.

Every Christmas. Oh God, every Christmas, it's the same argument.
posted by Katemonkey at 4:04 PM on March 15 [3 favorites]


my mom's specialty, the one who gets up and wanders around for huge chunks of the show then sits down at the end for the wrapup and complains it doesn't make any sense

oooh my mom is just like that! She didn't get the matrix because she decided to put her pet bird to bed during the red/blue pill speech. I sometimes will lend her dvd's of films I think she'll like, and half the time she returns them saying she didn't really get the plot. I found it confusing because she is an extremely intelligent woman with a degree, who is a fan of complex literature. I think I may have gotten through to her about paying attention when watching movies - I compared it to skipping chapters of a book, which she would never do.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 4:21 PM on March 15 [1 favorite]


We've gotten this far into the thread and nobody has said "I guess you would have to watch TV to understand this."

There is so much good tv these days that that line doesn't work any more. It's akin to bragging that you don't have any books in your home.

I'm seeing a big difference between people who watch a show and people who just have the tv on.

I gave up watching anything with anyone a long time ago. Watching stuff is NOT a social activity.

au contraire, mon ami! There are shows that I share with certain friends, and we commit to not watching ahead without the other. It's fun to binge on a great show together.
posted by kanewai at 9:04 PM on March 15


He, on the other hand, is a background noise guy. When he walks into the house, the first thing he does is turn on the TV, and only then will he start puttering around doing other stuff. It's always on, whether he's watching or not.

"There are two kinds of people in this world: Those that enter a room and turn the television set on, and those that enter a room and turn the television set off." from The Manchurian Candidate.
posted by bongo_x at 9:46 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


People who WANT to watch the goddamn COMMERCIALS.
posted by JanetLand at 12:24 AM on March 16 [3 favorites]


no no no I refuse to believe that anyone wants to see the commercials.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 2:22 AM on March 16 [1 favorite]


I broke up with my fiance´ for many reasons, but the biggest red flag was that he thought quoting every single line from Arrested Development was wrong.

"Maeby, we're having a family meeting!"
posted by kinetic at 6:03 AM on March 16 [5 favorites]


I watch the commercials and Idgaf
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:41 AM on March 16


People who WANT to watch the goddamn COMMERCIALS.

I have a friend who watches ALL THE TRAILERS in front of a DVD. This meshes perfectly with DVD manufacturers' seeming lack of awareness that the thing might not be viewed the same month it is shipped to stores, so if I watch a flick with her today, we must sit through several minutes of promos for movies that we are told stridently are "only in theatres" -- Kung Fu Panda, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Slumdog Millionaire, etc.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 2:09 PM on March 16


My previous comment ("What? They drove from Idaho to South Dakota in 5 hours? Please.") was really bothering me so I decided to figure out how long it actually does take to drive from Idaho to South Dakota. The fastest route I found (according to Google) was 8 hours (via Wyoming). If you stick to the interstate and go through Montana, it's 11 hours. However, neither route accounts for landslides, avalanches or traffic jams caused by bison.
posted by desjardins at 6:51 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


A lot of people, myself included, were that way with Dexter. I think we learned our lesson.

Not only did I not learn my lesson, but I am anxiously awaiting the return of Under the Dome.

My god the ending to Dexter was terrible.
posted by malocchio at 10:14 AM on March 17 [5 favorites]


This reminds me of that one episode of Battlestar where I actually screamed at Baltar through the TV. Because that's how it works, apparently?

Guess I'm an overreactor. But just for that one episode. And I do not feel that I was overreacting at all.
posted by Sara C. at 12:37 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


Is there a category for the TV viewer who grumbles and complains about how bad the show is and how they hate all the characters, but continues watching to the bitter end because they have to find out how the plot points get resolved

That's not a category of viewers, it's a category of show. Lost, BSG, Dexter, True Blood, post-Sorkin West Wing, Mad Men, Fringe, Supernatural... I think all you need is a good first season and a lot of loose ends, and the hate-watchers will carry you through to syndication
posted by ook at 12:50 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]


Baltar brings out the worst in people. Especially Baltar.

Ook, please add Teen Wolf to that list.

Bonus points for shows that seem like they're going to do a good job of being progressive and having a cast with representatives from a lot of ethnicities and then they slowly whittle down everyone who isn't white over several seasons. Like Heroes.
posted by NoraReed at 11:24 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


I share many of these and loved this thread! I can maybe add a new one of my own.

I am the guy who scouts out really great shows to watch, gets my partner hooked on them, and after about two seasons can't bring himself to even start an episode due to a crippling emotional weight and dread of what might happen to the characters. My partner isn't as paralyzed but won't finish them on her own because they already became a together thing.

My downloads folder is full of guilty reminders and we wind up watching a lot of B movies and schlock.
posted by gilrain at 10:58 AM on March 18 [1 favorite]


never having finished Rushmore (despite trying three times) because omg when is Jason Schwartzman going to get in trouble.

This is also why I could never enjoy Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Ferris was just such an insufferable prick I couldn't fathom him as the protagonist. (Oddly, I liked Rushmore just fine.)

Bonus points for shows that seem like they're going to do a good job of being progressive and having a cast with representatives from a lot of ethnicities and then they slowly whittle down everyone who isn't white over several seasons.

This happens with gender balance sometimes, too. I'm thinking Spin City (allll the other women--like three or four of them?--disappeared after Heather Locklear showed up) and perhaps the poster child for bizarre casting trends, Weeds (from this to this).
posted by psoas at 1:06 PM on March 18 [2 favorites]


"they emphasized the love of pie, so likely the pie will be significant"

Well, thanks for ruining the ending of Twin Peaks for me.

Just kidding. Everyone knows the delicious pie killed Laura Palmer.
posted by littlesq at 3:44 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


Wow, psoas, they all even have the same color hair! Creepy.
posted by Night_owl at 7:37 PM on March 18


Teen Wolf is, I think, the ultimate in casual hate-watching now. Every single person seems to agree its gone from stupidly, gloriously shitty to straight up actually shitty and boring but none of them can seem to stop watching it.

(I cut and run on shows, they'll be there if I need them later but I don't need to see them right now I'm looking at you disappointing Supernatural season that has made me lose all interest and wait to catch it on Netflix like a year from now.)
posted by The Whelk at 10:09 PM on March 18


If you don't talk during the show, what is the point of watching it together?
posted by LogicalDash at 9:46 AM on March 15 [11 favorites +] [!]


To see the same material at the same time, so it's equally fresh on your minds, so that when it's time for a commercial break, or the show ends, you can start talking about it with the exact same knowledge and the same mental place.
posted by Bugbread at 9:48 AM on March 15 [4 favorites −] [!]


To add to this: when I was in a LDR with the woman I now live with, we used to occasionally go on movie dates: I would go see the 7:10 showing of whatever movie in my city and she would be at the 7:15 one in her city and we would call each other when we got home and talk about the flick.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:44 PM on March 27


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