Lunchtable TV Talk: The Leftovers


You know how it is when you get all fired up to do something, and if you don’t strike while the iron is hot, the impetus to act dissipates or entirely disappears? Specific topics in writing are like that for me. I can’t count the times I have collected notes and links to articles that inspired or informed my thinking but then don’t write what I want to write immediately. Soon the inspiration is gone, and anything I would write later on the subject is devoid of the passion and sometimes entirely of the point I wanted to make.

(This is a different problem from being inspired and researching and drawing in a lot of information from a lot of sources, only to lose all the gathered information in one horrible technology crash. This also happened recently. Rest assured, I don’t think any of us is suffering or losing sleep over these articles I won’t be writing!)

I have already admitted to being a TV addict, half-watching copious amounts of the stuff while doing other things. Only giving it half my attention means that unless something is truly remarkable, I am not taking much away. I still, though, feel compelled to chronicle all this multitask erstwhile viewing, and if I don’t do it right away (either after watching a particular episode or finishing a season), I might as well not do it.

But here I am a few days after someone recommended the show The Leftovers to me. Usually I have already seen everything there is to see, so recommendations, while welcome, greet me as old news. The Leftovers is no exception. I watched it during its original run and was sometimes confounded, sometimes disturbed. I have no argument with the mostly powerful performances delivered by a large ensemble cast. But the fact that I almost remember nothing about the show, and a lot of its themes have been jumbled in my head with what I’ve seen in the disappointing US version of The Returned, makes me less than enthusiastic about recommending The Leftovers, even though I was drawn in at the time and will watch season two. Perhaps my TV addiction amounts to “too much of a good thing…”.