Quotes: Viewers Are Goldfish

"We're in the boredom-killing business."
Howard Beale, Network

"I think television in general — and movies in general — were paced at a slightly more leisurely pace years ago. Whether itís peopleís attention spans or they talk about the MTV Generation orÖ whatever it might be. Shows are a lot faster now. You took a lot of time in telling a story back then. I look at even old movies — in Bullitt, the old Steve McQueen movie, thereís a whole scene of him parking his car."
Chris Black

"What's that number again?"
— (Stock phrase of any radio commercial)

In writing a screenplay for a movie, be sure to include plenty of action.
WRONG: To be, or not to be.
RIGHT: LOOK OUT! GIANT RADIOACTIVE SQUIRRELS!
Dave Barry, "Grammar: De Letter of De Law"

"...as Andy Warhol so wisely observed, people will always prefer to look at something than nothing; between plain wall and flickering commercial, the eyes will have the second. As hearth and fire were once center to the home or lair so now the television set is the center of modern man's being, all points of the room converge upon its presence and the eyes watches even as the mind dozes, much as our ancestors narcotized themselves with fire."

"The continuity of the show is completely haphazard. Itís haphazard by design...are aiming towards the person that is grabbing a beer, and isnít really paying attention, and is walking out of the room every ten minutes and coming back and sitting down; all you are going to do is dumb down the show."

Jay: The Co-Holdeers of the Hardcore Championship break out a large sheet of plywood covered in barbed wire, which excites the crowd — but the insatiable cunts still chant, "WE WANT FIRE" a few seconds later.
V1: [groans] Yeah. I mean, they haven't even done the spot! Let them do it, and then if it doesn't appease ya, then you can chant. But Jesus Christ. Let them do their match.
OSW Review on ECW One Night Stand 2006, Ep. 39

"If McDonald's only served one item—the McMystery Meal—and you never knew whether you were going to get a hamburger, chicken nuggets, a fish sandwich, or whatever, few would dare to purchase it.

WCW pay-per-views were like McMystery Meals: you never knew what you were going to get. WCW never bothered to run down their cards on TV, fearing that fans would switch over to
Raw while they were doing this. Ironically, they'd then complain that nobody was buying their PPVs."
R. D. Reynolds and Bryan Alvarez, The Death of WCW

"I actually prefer it when some things aren't explicitly spelled out, highlighted and then recited by Chloe like some barely tolerable form of Vogon poetry...Smallville is not a show that often trusts its audience; this almost felt like I was being patted on the head and given a cookie."
Julian Finn on Smallville, "Hostage"

"This was the year TV critics finally realized that having a lot of dialogue does not equal having good dialogue. ZOMG SO MANY WORDS HOW DOES SORKIN DO IT?"
Drew Magary, "The 25 Least Influential People of 2012"

"By modern standards, sitting still to watch something for two hours is a legitimate effort. I know this because I feel the same way whenever I personally watch a whole movie or prestige TV show now, too. Iím like, ďWow, I finished True Detective. And I didnít even check my phone once! Good job, me!Ē Iíve seen people put DVD box sets of The Wire up on a shelf, and I promise you that they deliberately made it prominent."
Deadspin, "One Day We'll Be Too Lazy to Watch Football"

"There's a very important song, 'When Love Is Gone,' that fully fleshes out the story between Scrooge and his former love, Belle. It also provided greater insight as to when Scrooge's transformation from inspired chap to cold and heartless finally took its toll, but Disney execs felt it wouldn't appeal to children and decided it needed to be axed... Once introduced to the masses on home video, the sequence was highly regarded and praised for improving the film."

Spoony: What is that? The third gratuitous use of slo-mo so far?
Pat: My mind was having trouble registering that it was bullet shells being dropped out of that gun. I thought for a second that it might be Cadbury cream eggs.

Chris: Does Uwe Boll know the guy from Memento? Is that who he thinks his target audience is?
Matt': Maybe he just knows the effects of his movies.
—Chris Sims and Matt Wilson on Bloodrayne

"Jeffrey Katzenberg, then chairman of Walt Disney Studios, didn't want the song to be a part of the movie's world because he thought kids would find it boring. He arrived at that conclusion after a kid in the test audience spilled his popcorn during the scene, which to Katzenberg meant that the sequence was so mind-numbingly dull, it actually caused the child's higher motor functions to commit suicide."

"Johnny finally rides off, his horse going nuts because of some strange noise overhead, and dumping him by a plastic dragon, causing Johnny to have a flashback to a scene that, I'm not joking, was less than two minutes ago. I know you don't want your audience to forget things, but damn, give us some credit."

James Voysover: Coming up, in "The Gift Shop Sketch", part three...
Shopkeeper: How about this woolen dog?
James Voysover: The shopkeeper makes a suggestion.
Shopkeeper: How about this woolen dog?
James Voysover: But what will Brian's reaction be?
Brian: I'm looking for a gift for my aunt.
James Voysover: But what sort?
Shopkeeper: How about this woolen dog?
James Voysover: We already know the shopkeeper says that, but what does Brian, who's...
Brian: —looking for a gift for my aunt.
James Voysover: ...say before that?
Brian: Well, the sort of gift that if it were a quote, it would be apposite.
Shopkeeper: Hmm. How about this woolen dog?
James Voysover: Does the shopkeeper have a woolen dog? Will Brian like it? Find out in part four of "The Gift Shop Sketch"!

"Oh yeah, she has tuberculosis. Too bad the movie reminds us of that every time Satine does anything."