I have been meaning to write about this topic for quite awhile. I find many things about watching the tube here interesting:

1. Programming
TV in our apartment is definitely slanted toward an Anglo viewer. We have History Channel, Discovery Channel, MTV and other things you would likely be familiar with. The difference is that these shows all have a distinctively Asian twist: History spends more time airing stuff on Asian historical events than European or Canadian ones. The Discovery Channel airs more shows on Travel and local flora and fauna than back home (obviously)

Also, America has imported some of its best, and some of its worst shows. CSI airs here at least twice a day for EACH spinoff show (awesome). Law & Order also airs daily (awesome-r), even Oprah is on daily, Family Guy, Seinfeld, and the Simpsons!

But there are also soooo many bad American shows that it is almost embarrassing: TNA Wresting airs ALL night EVERY Saturday, along with WWE and Smackdown – which might be the same thing…I have no idea. And ever wonder what happens to unsuccessful shows with only a season or two back home? Yep! They get picked up in Asia and shown ad nauseum. For example: Bionic Woman, Terminator: The Sarah Connors Story, Dirt, etc etc.

2. Commercials
I dont know what the laws are, but commercials here are completely different. They don’t advertise products, only other TV shows. Its strange, but much preferable, in my opinion.

Also, the skip a lot of commercials. Like every other commercial during Oprah is just skipped. They fade to black and then reappear instantly. So what do they do with the leftover time since they dont take up the full hour? you might ask. Simple…show clips from other shows! Other Oprah shows, clips from a movie, or a little interview with a Hollywood Starlet.

3. Random

They play the same shows on at the same time, every night. For example, they will play the whole season of Lost in 2 weeks. Cause a new episode is aired every day. Which is great, unless you are busy one night a week..then you’re totally confused! They do this with Amazing Race, Last Comic Standing and many other shows. So when they run out of new shows, they just take it off the air and replace it with something else! So you can never really bet on your fav show at all. So annoying!

4. Subtitles

If a show is in English, it is subtitled in Mandarin. After awhile you don’t even notice, but I have to wonder how they can possibly read all those characters so quickly!
If a show is in Japanese or any other language, it is subtitled in English. This is because most people here also speak English.

Overall, this is far too much analysis of television, and I’m kind of embarrassed for having written this at all.

But there you have it! Everything you wanted to know about TV in Singapore!