Pop culture reflects life. It is a way for writers and actors to put their own experiences on display, to create art from them and to perhaps be emotionally enriched. We can watch TV, for example, and see our own lives reflected in them. The bad bosses, the awkward dates, and some good moments too. There are episodes about Thanksgiving, weddings, you name it. You know what is another thing that happens in TV quite often? Summer has arrived, and it is hot as hell. You’d better believe that TV knows its way around a heat wave.
How could it not? And that’s only partially because the television industry is based in LA, where summers gets super hot. Sometimes episodes are all about a heat wave, or about it being too hot. Sometimes it’s a secondary story, or just a thing in the background. It happens in sitcoms, dramas, and cartoons. It gets hot in the summer, and sometimes it is just too damn hot for most people. All we want to do is sit inside, perhaps with air conditioning on, and watch TV. Fittingly enough, we can then watch TV episodes about the very thing we’re living through.
Heat waves have hit The Simpsons on multiple occasions. Homer Simpson steals Flanders’ air conditioner or the family gets a pool. There’s an episode of Seinfeld where Jerry plans to get an air conditioning unit for his window just because his girlfriend wants one. When a heat wave happens, being outside can be uncomfortable. Hell, being inside can be uncomfortable. Sitcoms and dramas are often built on conflict and obstacles. A heat wave can be that obstacle. I mean, to go to the world of movies quickly, Do the Right Thing hinges on how hot it is outside. It posits that the heat is what helps cause all the chaos.
We are in the dead of summer. It is not a time where there is a lot of new television. It is a time when, in the past, many of us would go to the movies, sometimes just because they have AC. We can’t do that right now. What we can do is stay home – and we should really be staying home – and watch TV. Frankly, I don’t mind an episode about a heat wave, even when it’s hot. Of course, if that isn’t for you, maybe watch a Christmas episode. Take your mind off the heat with a little snow and Santa.