AS the Olympics nears its close, many Britons say the tournament has inspired them to experience more television.
Fuelled by a spectacular British medal tally, it is hoped that the Olympics could trigger a renaissance in television viewing, with millions who were entranced by Team GB exploring the other entertainments the medium has to offer.
A spokesman for the British Television Viewing Council said: “At the start of the Olympics, a lot of people were cynical. Did they want to watch that much television, for a whole fortnight? Wouldn’t they rather be on the internet?
“Soon though they forgot their hang-ups and just got into it. Now they’re ready to discover more television, like Hell’s Kitchen USA, Thelma’s Gypsy Girls and the show where people have funny-shaped warts growing on their genitals.
“We also hope to be doing more work in schools, taking tellies in to show kids and organising daily two-hour viewing periods.”
Olympics fan Roy Hobbs said: “Watching Chris Hoy win gold, I was gripped but this overwhelmed sensation of the brilliance of television. It was a spiritual feeling, almost frightening in its intensity.
“When I was younger I used to watch a lot of telly. Rockford Files, Quincy, the weather. But in recent years I’ve gotten more into games consoles and fiddling with my smartphone.
“What’s great about telly is it gets the whole family together, sitting in rapt attention while perhaps eating some crisps. I want to be able to pass that passion on to my kids.”
Office manager Nikki Hollis said: “Whether it’s Usain Bolt taking gold, or Peter Andre buying a new car in an ITV2 documentary, with telly it’s like you’re really there, in the moment.
“Now I’ve got that television feeling, I never want to lose it.”