I adore Talking Pictures TV. It’s a bastion of independent television, an treasure trove of oddities and wonders, and a place where I can watch a lot of bad movies.
It’s the kind of station where you can watch a 1960s’ kitchen-sink drama, a 1930s’ murder mystery, a 1950s’ giant radioactive insect B-movie, a five-minute film-reel of someone riding the Big Dipper at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, and then finish off with an 80s’ psychological horror, all in the span of a lazy Saturday afternoon and evening.
It’s where I saw Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Spellbound for the first time, as well as The Trollenberg Terror and Nomads. Not to mention regular rewatchings of The House on Haunted Hill and Beyond the Valley of the Dolls.
It also has one of the easiest-to-read online schedules I have ever seen. No need to navigate around complicated tables! No fancy scripting or barrages of advertising! Just clean, clear, and understandable listings I can go an entire month ahead and plan out what I want to record.
(I have a lot of movies from TPTV on my Tivo. I can quit any time. Really.)
I just don’t love it because it gives me a chance to catch movies I’ve heard about but have never seen. I also love it because it reminds me of my childhood, sitting around watching old movies on AMC or TCM or the local UHF channels, where you got weird local ads and weirder random films. Or the late late movies my dad would tape alongside Popeye cartoons and random music videos.
It’s obviously run with love, and it also has the only podcast I’ll listen to that runs over two hours per episode.
So there we go. You, me, and Talking Pictures TV.