Aug 6, 2017
Maybe Hindsight Isn’t Really 20-20 After All . . .
In which the afterthought cancellation of Hindsight makes me question my entire relationship with VH-1.
Let me start by saying I completely understand that me and my three best friends may very well have been the only people on the planet who actually watched Hindsight, a VH-1 series about a woman who accidentally travels (in an elevator, naturally) back to 1995, where she is inexplicably given the opportunity to relive and, hopefully, right the wrongs of her 20s.
I understand this so well, in fact, that when the series concluded its first season back in February, I was fully reconciled to its inevitable cancellation. I told myself that, while I may never know where Becca Brady ended up after her cliff-hanging second trip in the time-traveling elevator . . .
. . . after she screwed things up and alienated her best friend, Lolly, ONCE AGAIN, by porking that hot guy from The 100, exactly like she did the first time . . .
. . . it was OK . . . because, you know, I still had my health and stuff.
But then, press releases were issued sometime in early March that the series had actually been RENEWED despite only having four viewers (i.e., my three best friends and me, see explanation above), and I was ECSTATIC!
Hindsight’s surprising Season 2 pickup gave me hope that, in this new age of On Demand / Streamed / DVR’ed television (where each individual is, in effect, their own television executive), television shows that aren’t particularly popular could still potentially be renewed, just because they are unexpectedly good . . . because they have something interesting/oddly insightful to say about the decisions we make in life, and regrets, and just being young and dumb and living in the moment and/or a victim of cruel fate. I was also hopeful that I could continue to build my ever growing 90s music catalog and hear again that awesome song by U2 that played in the final moments of what ended up being the series finale, Numb. Because, damn, that sh*t was goooooood!
But then, this past week, VH-1 CHANGED ITS MIND.
It decided that it and Hindsight just weren’t that good together, after all, and therefore should see other people. And, by that, I mean that VH-1 would continue to date other floozies, and Hindsight would be destined to suffer a long and lonely spinsterhood, watching Golden Girls reruns in its basement with cats . . . lots and lots of cats.
And this harsh, unemotional decision . . . made by a TV network recently put under the helm of a new executive . . . caused me to question my entire relationship with VH-1, a network I’ve secretly been enjoying since my time in the womb or thereabouts.
We had a pretty good thing going for a while there, VH-1 and I . . .
He was the bad influence boyfriend who was fairly attractive but super slutty, not too bright, and with no conceivable future, apart from possibly jail or a life as a sexy gas station attendant.
And I was the good girl, looking for an escape from my humdrum existence of watching TV shows that were usually generally fairly well-received by the public.
Just like that third glass of wine . . . or a bag of Hershey’s miniatures . . . or staying up past 2 a.m. on a school night . . . VH-1 is the significant other that you instinctively know is bad for you, but, man, does he seem like a really good idea at the time!
In secret, I rendezvoused with VH-1 (always alone in my home, and always really late at night, when I knew there was no chance of anyone stopping by unexpectedly and catching us en flagrante). I gorged on Pop-up Video, Behind the Music, and Storytellers, all of which gave me useless facts about music that I’d use to impress my friends at parties . . . even though I’d have to lie and say I got the information from somewhere else . . . like Wikipedia, or something.
I had once marathoned the entire I Love the 90s series, leaving my couch only for bathroom breaks, and the occasional handful of Froot Loops, all the way from Pretty Woman (1990) to The Blair Witch Project (1999).
I even occasionally experimented with Celebreality shows like Tough Love, Rock of Love, and other terrible shows with Love in their titles. (Because VH-1 is nothing if not creative when naming its series). However, in my defense, I was inebriated at the time. (As in, whenever I watched Celebreality on VH-1, I was always at least a little bit tipsy, and therefore entirely not responsible for my actions.)
Through all this, VH-1, though not necessarily intellectually stimulating, and definitely not monogamous, was refreshingly loyal and discreet, never blabbing about our dalliances. VH-1 was always around whenever I needed a quick fix, which I appreciated. Plus, he never got sore or jealous when I regularly kicked him to the curb for better programming.
I wasn’t in love with VH-1, but I trusted him . . . at least until last week, when he canceled Hindsight, despite promising me he wouldn’t, thereby taking my precious trust and crushing it under his foot like a stale cigarette.
Is nothing sacred anymore, VH-1? Not even tawdry relationships with bad television networks that, once and a while, stumble onto a series idea that’s actually decent?
Was our entire relationship a lie? All those hours we spent together, in the dark, hoping like heck that no one would find us? Did you even care about me at all?
You know, VH-1, if hindsight was, in fact, 20-20, and I got a chance to climb back into that elevator to MY past, I’d change the channel to MTV. Just saying!