/ media

Be careful what you wish for

“Safari 3000”, starring David Carradine & Stockard Channing; one and a half stars. This is what TiVo thinks I like to watch. Lemme tell ya the plot: “An ex-Hollywood stunt driver enters an African rally with a woman from a magazine as his navigator”.

Apparently, TiVo thinks I’m an idiot.

You see, as you watch shows that TiVo has recorded, you can rate them with your remote control by giving them from one to three thumbs up or down, all from the comfort of your couch. The idea is that TiVo keeps track of the shows you elect to record and the ratings you give them, so that TiVo can then go out into the void of Television Land and find upcoming shows that seem to be similar to those you like, compiling them into a list. You can view these TiVo suggestions at any time. Tonight I had myself a look at the suggestions list and this Safari 3000 business caught my eye. After reading the description, I figured it was the combination of my recording some aviation-related programs as well as tagging an upcoming “Insomniac” episode that led TiVo to think I’m some sort of risk-taking dimwit that likes to look at boobs and drink beer. This is not true. I’m really not much of a risk-taker.

All along I had wondered how this cute little box would interpret our ratings and selections. At the beginning, TiVo kept recording all this home & garden stuff because Brenda watched HGTV for a while. But last weekend, Brenda was in tech rehearsals working long hours; hours I spent looking at boobs and drinking beer, apparently. In actuality, I watched a lot of aviation shows, as I usually do when I have the idiot box to myself. TiVo was paying attention. Here are a few more selections from the TiVo Hit Parade, lovingly created just for me:

Rage and Honor II: Hostile Takeover
She Spies
Iron Eagle II
Speed 2: Cruise Control
A Small Town in Texas (you know, the movie starring Timothy Bottoms, where he plays an “ex-con (who) comes home to his girlfriend and seeks automotive revenge on the sheriff”? I didn’t think so.)

TiVo actually believes that my thirst for action is so intense that it spans language barriers, because it also suggested I record “Escape de Nueva York”, which everyone knows was dirigda por John Carpenter. Don’t get me wrong; I love this movie, for its Bad Movie Appeal and Adrienne Barbeau’s boobs. Hell, hearing Kurt Russell hiss “call me Snake” at Lee Van Cleef, in Spanish, actually sounds like real entertainment. But I fear what will happen to our suggestions list if I dare to watch. What will my TiVo think?

I had read about this phenomenon prior to getting a TiVo; now it’s happened to me. Be careful with that wish list, folks.