The worst thing to happen to British cinema: Flat screen TVs.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

I’ve noticed people saying they cannot understand British dialogue on TVs anymore. And therefore don’t like watching Black Mirror or things of that sort. The likely culprit is our now ever-flatter TV screens.

As people demand thinner and thinner TVs there is less room in the TV for speakers. Therefore manufacturers have had to do crazy things like have the speakers pointed down or, like on my mom’s TV, pointed backwards.

Of course this can be alleviated by buying a sound system, or even just a decent soundbar. Or wearing headphones. But old habits die hard, and I think Americans just sink their whole budget into the screen and don’t worry about sound. Or their spouse objects to “the clutter”.

A free option is enabling subtitles, which I think native English speakers are even less likely to do. Because this prohibits checking your phone.

As such Americans increasingly don’t understand what’s going on on British shows and blame the British screenwriters. Whereas if they paid close attention to the dialogue — because they have subtitles enabled or better sound — they’d realize that the plot does indeed make sense.