Hollywood vs. Reality: An Introduction

As a general rule, I avoid watching Hollywood’s dramatic interpretations of death investigation. I can only assume that physicians have similar issues if or when they watch hospital dramas. The exception to this rule is when I stumble on a crime drama while channel surfing or I’m simply looking for something amusing to watch. To say that writers and directors take liberties with reality is putting it mildly.

These inaccuracies must be the Hollywood equivalent of “anticipated casualties” when the sole intention of any program is to attract and retain viewers. Fortunately for me, these inaccuracies serve as a seemingly unlimited source of writing material for this site.

I plan to use these inaccuracies—and my subsequent issues—in what I anticipate to be a series of segments. I admit this series may be perceived as an extended rant filled with various soapbox issues, but the goal here is to deliver some insight. I certainly don’t expect anything I write here to change the face of television. I fully expect the modern-day crime drama to continue to be successful for years to come. After all, fiction has historically been easier to sell than non-fiction. I prefer the History Channel, but at last check it has yet to eclipse the networks in the prime time ratings.


2 Responses to “Hollywood vs. Reality: An Introduction”

  1. 1 Paula
    January 30, 2005 at 1:55 am

    As I anticipated when I got hooked on CSI and its sort, those in the business of crime scene investigation etc can poke holes in every episode. Your frustration with them is probably similar to mine (I’m an RN) when I watch medical shows–my husband requested I not watch ER after its first episode had me throwing a book at the TV. And don’t get me started on “Medical Investigation”–even my computer geek husband saw dozens of errors during the first episode (the only one I’ve been able to make it through–it’s a waste of my time). OTOH I know nurses who love ER and even General Hospital.
    So…I wonder what the percentages are between those in a field who love to watch Hollywood depictions of their professions and those who can’t stand it?

  2. 2 A Douglas
    January 30, 2005 at 12:50 pm

    I would guess that it’s a 50-50 proposition in my line of work, although most of those who do watch Hollywood renditions do so for amusement purposes only.

    I’ll admit it makes for good entertainment. Ratings prove that. The problem I have is that TV creates a large disparity in what families think we can do and what forensics can actually do. I’m planning an entry addressing that particular issue in the very near future, so stay tuned.

    Thanks for taking time to comment.

    A Douglas

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