How Television Shows Affect Your Psyche: A Study Beyond ‘How I Met Your Mother’

This is your brain on TV

  • Are you all alone? Wallowing in a combination of self-pity and a puddle of your own tears? Unsure if true love even exists? It’s okay, it’s all TV’s fault.

    New York Magazine led us to a study from the Psychology of Popular Media Culture that pretty much found that if you watch sitcoms like How I Met Your Mother, it affects your ability to love. In fact, watching Ted Mosby be the friend you constantly say “Oh shut the fuck up, Ted” to for nine seasons gives you a cynical outlook on love itself.

    Now, personally, the LOLthemothersdead ending of How I Met Your Mother did in fact affect my ability to trust ever again, so the study might be on to something. To make the lives of those over at the Psychology of Popular Media Culture‘s lives a little easier, I took a look at some other popular TV shows, and what areas of your mind they might irreparably destroy influence.

  • Breaking Bad can have a negative influence on your family relations, most notably with your father. Is your dad in the Beer League Softball Team and ignoring your tears because buck up, you pansy business, or the EMPIRE BUSINESS?

  • True Blood can change your views on healthy sexual relationships. You'll soon be asking yourself, "Why isn't my sex reminiscent of soft-core porn?" Eventually, you'll wonder why your love-making isn't random, passionate, and mostly done at super-fast vampire speeds. (Maybe not that last one. Zing)

  • Watching 24 impacts the part of your brain that tells you that everyone is NOT a terrorist. Quite conversely, you'll think EVERYONE is a terrorist. You're going to want to get an answer out of them now, any means necessary, because there isn't a lot of time, DAMMIT!

  • People all over the world have been watching the 2014 FIFA World Cup, but did you know it could affect the way you feel pain? Watch too much and soon every little iota of pain will be amplified by 10,000. Guy casually bumped into you on the subway? You're going to be on the ground, clutching your ankle. Stubbed toe? Stop the game and get the paramedics out here, stat.

  • Watching Orange is the New Black might just fool you into thinking you would be okay in prison. Warning: you would not be okay in prison.

  • Watching The Walking Dead may have strong effects on your desire to have children, because fuck Carl that's why.

  • Game of Thrones will make you question, um, every single facet of life. Don't become too attached to anyone, because chances are they will suffer and die. Don't expect life to be just like the books," because sometimes "HBO" is going to switch it up on you (that's a metaphor). Don't rule out any love interest, whether it be your sister, your cousin, a real prostitute, a woman posing as a prostitute but actually a wildling from the North, whatever! It is possible to find love in a headless place. Just like on Game of Thrones.