CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- In keeping with the theme of the day, I'll take this Thursday's column to give thanks for my TV. Not my actual TV set, per se, although I am thankful for that, but more for some of the things about TV for which I am grateful.
For instance, I am thankful for sitcoms that make me laugh, like "Parks and Recreation," "Up All Night" and "Modern Family." (That's not a complete list, by the way - just my top three.)
I am thankful that "Chuck" was granted a stay of execution so it could be wrapped up appropriately instead of being forced to end on a season-turned-series finale cliffhanger.
I am thankful for "Breaking Bad," the best show on TV, and for "The Walking Dead," another great show that's worthy of sharing the "Breaking Bad" timeslot. (It will disappear temporarily from there, though, with a midseason finale at 9 p.m. Sunday, preceded by a season marathon at 2:30 p.m.).
As a subset of this, I am thankful to "Breaking Bad" for creating and growing the roles of Jesse, played to perfection by Aaron Paul, and Gus, played by a sublimely evil Giancarlo Esposito. Ditto "The Walking Dead," for unleashing Norman Reedus as Daryl, a role he was born to play.
I am thankful for the USA Network. Although some of its older shows don't rank as high on my list of favorites as they used to, and I'm not crazy about some of the new additions, it is still the most consistently enjoyable network around.
Above all of these, I'm thankful for my DVR because, without it, I would miss most of the shows I just mentioned.
I put off getting DVR for a really long time. "I have a VCR that works just fine," I said. "Why should I pay even more for my cable than I already do?" I said.
Now that I have it, though, I will never give it up. It is worth every penny that it adds to my monthly bill.
I love that I can elect to record whole seasons on it. This way, I don't have to worry if I'm late or gone when my shows are on or if their timeslots or airdates get shifted around.
I also love that I can watch my recorded shows in whatever order I want, as opposed to the order they're recorded like on a VCR. I'm a big fan of having mini-marathons whenever I get a few episodes of shows stored up.
Most of all, I love that I can fast forward through commercials on it. That has completely spoiled me.
When I do watch shows as scheduled or on Suddenlink's On Demand and fast forwarding isn't an option, I've got one last thing I am very thankful for -- my remote's mute button.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
Thanksgiving weekend marathons
Starred (*) networks are Amy's recommendations.
A&E:"The First 48," 8 a.m. Thursday; "Storage Wars," 7 a.m. Friday and 7 p.m. Saturday; "Criminal Minds," 5 p.m. Sunday.
Animal Planet: "Hillbilly Handfishin,'" 9 a.m., and "Tanked," 5 p.m. Thursday; "I Shouldn't Be Alive," 9 a.m., and "Fatal Attractions," 5 p.m. Friday.
*BBC: "Star Trek: The Next Generation," 8 a.m. Thursday; "Top Gear," 8 a.m. Friday; "Battlestar Galactica," 6 a.m. Saturday; "Kitchen Nightmares," 6 a.m. Sunday.
*BET: "My Wife and Kids," 8 a.m., and "Reed Between the Lines," 5 p.m. Thursday; "The Parkers," 8 a.m. Friday; "Everybody Hates Chris," 9 a.m. Saturday; "The Bernie Mac Show," 10 a.m. Sunday.
Bravo: "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills," noon Thursday and 9:30 a.m. Saturday; "The Millionaire Matchmaker," 11 a.m. Friday; "The Real Housewives of Atlanta," 10 a.m. Sunday.
*Cartoon Network: "Tom and Jerry," 9 a.m. today.
Comedy Central: "Tosh.0," 6:30 p.m. Saturday.
Discovery: "American Guns"/"Sons of Guns," 9 a.m. Thursday; "Gold Rush: Alaska"/"Gold Rush," 9 a.m. Friday; "Deadliest Catch," 11 a.m. Saturday.
Disney XD: "Kickin' It," 11 a.m. and "My Babysitter's a Vampire," 7 p.m. today; "Kick Buttowski: Suburban Daredevil," 5 p.m. Friday.
Hallmark: Christmas movies, 3 p.m. Friday until 10 a.m. Monday.