MEDIUM (March 21, 2016): HOW A TV SITCOM TRIGGERED THE DOWNFALL OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION

Photo by J. Delvalle/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Photo by J. Delvalle/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

 
 

THE ONE WHERE WE RETAIN OUR SANITY IN A STUPID WORLD

BY DAVID HOPKINS

want to discuss a popular TV show my wife and I have been binge-watching on Netflix. It’s the story of a family man, a man of science, a genius who fell in with the wrong crowd. He slowly descends into madness and desperation, led by his own egotism. With one mishap after another, he becomes a monster. I’m talking, of course, about Friends and its tragic hero, Ross Geller.

You may see it as a comedy, but I cannot laugh with you. To me, Friends signals a harsh embrace of anti-intellectualism in America, where a gifted and intelligent man is persecuted by his idiot compatriots. And even if you see it from my point of view, it doesn’t matter. The constant barrage of laughter from the live studio audience will remind us that our own reactions are unnecessary, redundant.

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