May 7, 2003

All New

Have you noticed that television networks have taken to describing upcoming episodes of their shows as “all new”? (For example, “an all new ER.”) What does that mean? Have we unknowingly been watching programs containing stock footage and scenes aired previously, that is, shows only partly new? Perhaps “all new” is supposed to mean “new to everyone,” a distinction necessitated by NBC’s introduction of the slogan “If you haven’t seen it, it’s new to you” of a few years back.

Actually, “all” is probably just a meaningless intensifier dreamed up by some PR type trying to be original. That “all new” episode of ER no doubt uses the same actors playing the same characters on the same sets as earlier ones and is produced by the same people and filmed by the same crew. All new? Hardly!

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