The Guardian‘s Vicky Frost thinks 3D television might not do well because the cardboard glasses you have to wear look goofy. And because strapping those red-and-blue suckers onto your face is a pain. And, yes, she’s right on both counts. But I think the main reason 3D TV won’t do well is because–even if we develop the technology to enjoy 3D TV without the glasses–it’s just not necessary.
These days, pretty much everything we can possibly imagine, we can create. So of course we’re going to try out new digital methods in storytelling, especially if there’s money to be made and there are television studio executives behind it. But just how much innovation is too much? At what point does technology stop giving us opportunities and instead start becoming a distraction?
I’m all for innovation. I like reading microfiction on Twitter, and I like unconventional things like miniature micro-music mixtape magazines. And even though I prefer paperbound books at this point in my life, I think digital readers like the Kindle and the Nook are dead useful, and once the technology becomes more affordable, I’ll probably jump on the bandwagon. I can also see how 3D cinema might be a good idea, because film is a slightly different and more flexible medium.
But 3D TV just seems so gimmicky to me. And more importantly, gratuitous. Do I really need to see the three-dimensional, ravaged body of Detectives Benson and Stabler’s most recent rape victim on Law & Order: SVU? Or would the jokes on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia be any funnier each week in 3D? (Although I will admit: shows like Glee would be much more introducing to watch in 3D, purely for the choreography…but then again, musical dramedies aren’t the norm on television.)
Maybe I’m missing something here. Maybe this is a sort of black-and-white-versus-color-television situation–you don’t think it’s necessary, until you get it and then wonder how you ever lived without it. But is this really the case with 3D TV? And if it is, what’s next? Will I be able to touch the sets? Smell a character’s perfume? Taste what they’re eating for breakfast? And remind me again: how would any of this actually improve the story?
I could ramble on about this, but instead I’d rather hear from you: what do you think of 3D TV? Do you think there really is a point at which technology begins to overshadow the art it’s supposed to complement?