I love letting media affect my emotions. I laugh aloud at comedies, I feel embarrassed when fictional people make faux pas and I scream when something unexpectedly pops up in a scary movie. But most of all, I love to cry. I’m moved to tears, then I realize I’m crying over something fictional and the realization of that pathetic truth usually makes me cry harder. Strangely though, of all the emotions I readily and willingly display as a result of good media, I usually don’t cry over anything but TV.

I’ve never cried at a play. None of Shakespeare’s tragedies, none of the modern plays commenting on social decay have made me shed a tear. I watch my friends bawl at chick flicks and think to myself “you’re crying at this?” I have even tried to cry with music. After a rough day, I plop down at my computer, put my headphones on and try to cry to Radiohead’s “Nude” and have never succeeded. I turn the TV to the right show and I instantly need a box of tissues.

I cried no fewer than seven times the first time I watched the hour-long “Doctor Who” episode “Vincent and the Doctor.” It was just so happy and beautiful! I cry in anticipation each time I watch “The West Wing” season two premiere, season two finale and season three finale. I’ll probably later regret admitting that I’ve cried at the end of “Modern Family.” Hell, even a few episodes of “How I Met Your Mother” have touched my heart enough that I couldn’t contain my tears.

Maybe it’s a little weird that I’ve cried during a few episodes of “Glee” and that I watched “Crazy Heart” in theaters, stone-faced. Don’t get me wrong, I thought “Crazy Heart” was sad, but it didn’t make me cry. Maybe I could’ve cried at Maggie Gyllenhall’s and Jeff Bridges’s performances, but the constant knowledge that I was surrounded by strangers kept me from letting my emotions run wild.

I generally don’t watch TV with other people, but I definitely don’t watch TV dramas with other people. I lead the life of a busy college student and watch TV when I get to it, so most of my television viewing happens late at night. When I’m exhausted, lying in my bed, falling asleep to the soft glow of the TV screen and I know that none of my friends can make fun of me, it’s easy to cry when Kurt Hummel hits the high note.

Sometimes those late nights in front of the TV lead to me watching a movie or two. You’d think the isolation of my apartment would allow me to spill some tears when watching a movie, but no. When watching “Titanic” on TBS, I don’t cry when Jack tries to hold on to Rose in the icy Atlantic Ocean. I cry for the characters in my TV shows because I know them. I’ve been with them for episode upon episode and season upon season. I’ve seen “Titanic” five or six times, but Rose and Jack always develop the same way, and I never learn any more about them. The events and characters in my shows have the room to change and evolve, whereas plays and movies are always the same. Even when I’m re-watching an episode, the events and characters have more context and backstory, and therefore I’m more affected when something devastating or uplifting happens.

TV allows for a more personal connection than film or theater. You don’t have to make the trek to the theater, or sit in uncomfortable chairs in order to get lost in a TV show. You don’t even have to leave your house to rent or buy a DVD. And you can be as involved as you want. Watch casually or religiously. TV accommodates you.

And that accommodation and personalization allows me to completely unwind while watching a TV show. So though I’m sure I’ll be mocked relentlessly for admitting how emotional I get while watching TV, I’ll just pop in the season three finale of “The West Wing” and weep at the impact of awesome TV.

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