How Trump the Vulgar Boosted the Hallmark Channel

♠ Posted by Emmanuel in at 8/23/2017 03:06:00 PM
The Hallmark Channel is everything Trump's America is not: civil, polite, and uplifting.
Despite his improbable appeal to certain segments of the American electorate--you'll have to point them out to me since I can't find any sensible reason why--I'll bet they would agree that Donald Trump is a walking obscenity. Insulting anyone and everyone--people of color, people of other faiths, foreigners, white people who don't agree with him and so on--he arguably sets new lows for public discourse. His exceedingly crass manner has dragged American public discourse and the rest of the world's views of the United States into the gutter.

However, there is a bright side. Sort of. Given the putrid state of American life, wouldn't it be nice to go to a place of civility, kindness, and people lifting each other up instead of tearing them down? Well, there is such a place. It's called "The Hallmark Channel." Personally, I do not watch it because the story lines are exactly the opposite of what Trump sees. Instead of American Carnage, it's American Fluff. Neither is quite an accurate portrayal of North American reality, but hey, when you have too much of the former, I guess people pine for the latter. That is, a bygone era that's largely conjured suits more and more people:
It’s been called feel-good fluff by both critics and viewers alike, but the fact of the matter is Hallmark Channel, with its sugary sweet TV movies and shows, is currently one of the highest-rated TV channels in the United States.  Shows like Chesapeake Shores (starring Jesse Metcalfe) and saccharinely titled movies like A Dash of Love and Love at First Bark provide the mindless, wholesome entertainment people are turning to in Donald Trump’s America[...]
So what’s the deal here? Why are people flocking so heavily to Hallmark?

“It makes sense that in an era of war and political conflict, people turn to their TVs for feel-good escapism,” said Amber Dowling, TV critic and former president of the Television Critics Association. “Historically that’s been true over the years, and has usually led to an increase in production on family comedies and stories. Hallmark churns this type of programming out, so they’re able to easily fit that current appetite.”

Indeed, it’s true: Hallmark shows and movies, for the most part, are squeaky clean. No swears, no sex, closed-mouth kisses, and enforced “family values” can go a long way when the rest of TV is a melange of excessive violence and sex. Many contemporary TV shows try to go the other way, towards whatever forbidden button needs pushing. Hallmark and channels like it are salves, oases away from the chaos of network and cable TV. It’s no surprise its tagline is “The heart of TV.”

Trump's America is not a happy place, and people need to escape somewhere:

“The environment is undeniably contentious,” said Bill Abbott, chief executive of Crown Media, which owns Hallmark. “We are a place you can go and feel good. We intentionally branded ourselves as the happy place.” While Hallmark’s ratings have been going up consistently over the last few years, it’s gotten a noticeable bump since late 2015, when the latest presidential election cycle started. 
 I'll bet you the owners of this channel are secretly wishing for the continued reign of Trump. Just as cable news channels keep blasting him but wish he remains in office to get more viewers, so do the owners of the feelgood, happy ending channel wish for the endless torrent of misery that is the Trump administration. 

Heaven help us all.