What explains the pointlessness of most published TV criticism is that television has become immune to charges that it lacks any meaningful connection to the world outside it. It’s not that charges of nonconnection have become untrue. It’s that any such connection has become otiose. Television used to point beyond itself. Those of us born in like the sixties were trained to look where it pointed, usually at version of “real life” made prettier, sweeter, better by succumbing to a product or temptation. Today’s audience is way better trained, and TV has discarded what’s not needed. A dog, if you point at something, will look only at your finger.

E Unibus Pluram: Television and U.S. Fiction, David Foster Wallace

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