The Internet (broadly conceived) doesn’t distract me anymore like it used to. Sure, I still sometimes kill time by surfing from site to site and checking my email constantly and fiddling around on Facebook. But not like I used to. No, I have a new addiction: the series. It’s really a return to the old type of addictions I had when I was a kid and teenager, when I religiously watched television and was addicted to series of genre fantasy like Terry Brooks. (I largely didn’t follow series after I stopped watching television around 2001 until a friend got me hooked on House a few years ago.)
Much of May and half of June was devoted to watching the first five seasons of Lost, a show I had never seen but wanted to get into because I had heard so many good things and because a few of the seasons were co-written by Brian Vaughan, the writer of Y: The Last Man, which I fell in love with during spring term (and am working on a conference paper on). I thought I’d spend the next few weeks re-watching The X-files, which I adored as a teenager but didn’t get to see much of because my dad hated science fiction (I had a similar problem with Star Trek: TNG). However, a different series has distracted me: Ouran High School Host Club, an anime show about a host club at a privileged high school. A group of boys have a club where they host girls at their school, but things get interesting when a girl, who is mistaken for a boy, joins the club. So much gender anxiety in anime! My friend Keith suggested it, and I’m addicted. Today I went and bought the first volume of the comic it’s based off of.
And I’ve been buying comic books a bit too much recently: Ex Machina (also by Vaughan), Planetary (haven’t read this one yet), The Walking Dead, The Wasteland (note the trend in the posthuman and apocalyptic themes of some of these, if you’re familiar with them). But I’ve moved further from the surf-surf-surf of the Internet to serial distractions. I guess I’d rather surf along narratives and suspense than loosely associative links right now.