I've begun watching HBO's old series, Tales from the Crypt, which I hadn't watched since I was a little boy. My parents didn't like my obsession with horror as a kid, which probably only made me like it more. I had unmarked VHS copies of each of the A Nightmare on Elm Street movies that I kept under my bed and at one point, at the height of my role playing nerdom, I created a rpg of Friday the 13th. For some reasont hough my folks didn't really seem to have a problem with my watching Tales from the Crypt. I suppose that since it was on television and based on a comic book they themselves read as kids they must have assumed it was "safe."
The series is subversive, violent, campy, and hilarious. I wish there were something like it today that I could write for. Not every episode is a gem, but even at its worst the show is still pretty entertaining. Some, like the escape mental patient in a Santa suit episode I watched last night, manage the near impossible - to be both frightening and funny at the same time. In general, I think, you get one or the other but rarely both.
Anyway, I recommend it.
I also recommend The Atheism Tapes, which is currently streaming on Netflix. Put simply, The Atheism Tapes is a series of BBC produced conversations between Jonathan Miller and six prominent intellectuals who also happen to be non believers. (Of special interest to theater nerds, Arthur Miller is one of them!) Miller seems to really know his subjects and they each discuss in depth just exactly what their path to disbelief was.
It's no secret that I'm an atheist and anti-theist, but I think anybody would find these conversations stimulating.
Why don't we have TV this smart in America?