New TV!

This next step in Project Home Rejuvenation is that Mia and I have bought a new TV. It’s flat. It’s LED. It’s big and shows HD.

What that really meant, I found out a few nights ago. The apartment was pitch black, Mia was at work and Blixa asleep. I played the intro from LOTR 2, which is a really good HD experience – Gandalf is hurled off a cliff and fights a fiery demon on the way down, which in itself would be cool and I’d surely love that shit if I’d never met my friends other than online while role-playing, but it looked great in a way: I could separate the hairs in said guy’s nostrils while the scene was pure action and he tried to stab Rush Limbaugh the demon – but what, really, does it entail?

As the camera pans, everything flows smoothly on the TV. Too smoothly: oh Lord, there’s no stuttering whatsoever! Actually, it felt like playing a new computer-game on a new, powerful computer and suddenly, as you gaze into the screen to play, everything feels more real than reality itself. Having owned a fat TV until now, I’m used to a certain level of blurriness but 1080p just takes all that away; that’s nerd-speak for really-really-high-definition.

I actually realised I could see neck-hair on people as lights came out. Watching a bit of “The Matrix” – another choice based on the facts that it was available and 1080p – made me examine the surroundings, the furrows in people’s faces and such, rather than watch the film itself.

I’m not sure this is a good or bad thing. Probably getting used to it…I guess. It’s all just a new way of watching film and TV for me. It’s weird but I like it in some ways.

Watching non-HD stuff on the new TV also takes getting used to. You get a kind of ghosty effect, people walking and leaving millisecond trails behind. Their contours don’t seem lucid unless they stand still. It’s like your spanking new TV gives you a sense of being wasted.

Now, a few days after having bought the new thing, I’m used to watching episodes of “Gossip Girl” from DVD and the characters move without stuttering but are a little glowy, making it all a bit “The Bold And The Beautiful” to me. Mia thinks it’s like watching a documentary film, and I agree with that too: I feel like it’s high-quality, but could be shot by my neighbour.

Watching films in HD also makes them less cinematic, and more home-made. Some of them, at least. I just watched the Jason Bourne-trilogy in HD. The surroundings in London and Paris that I’ve seen in real life shocked me by seeming just as real through the TV, which is not what I’m used to. I wasn’t really sure if that’s what I wanted!

HD makes dialogue and plot come through more for me, as there are no visual larger-than-life effect there, as opposed to how a fat TV made everything feel. To me, anyway. I’m sure this sounds like I’ve gone bonkers, but what I’m trying to tell you is that fat TV made films seem like films, while HD is more like I’ve-filmed-this-myself (maybe without using special effects).

Can’t wait to see a really old, grainy black-and-white film in 1080p, which feels like the equivalent of buying a really expensive camera
to go take pictures as though you were using a disposable camera: money wasted. Or could it be great?

It’s all confusing and new, but I’m getting used to it. And it feels great to have a TV in the house that takes up much less space. It’s getting time to buy new furniture for it to sit on. Blixa is sad though, as she was so used to sit on the fat old TV. She still tries to climb the new one, and when she ends up on top, she sits there wobbling unsafely. We’ll see what she substitutes that with…

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