All NewHow does “all new” differ from simply “new”? On the eye of hell, there’s the occasional clip episode, in which the characters, stuck together in one place for one reason or another (snowed in, car broke down, nuclear holocaust) reminisce about all the fun ‘n’ special times they’ve had together. So they shoot a couple of scenes which serve to introduce clips from previous episodes. I suppose you could say that’s new, but not all new.

The problem is that those “new” episodes are clearly the minority, so it shouldn’t be necessary to tag anything new — really new — as “all new.” Besides, most of the time they’re not “all new.” How many “all new” episodes open with a quick reminder of what’s been going on so that the viewer can figure out what’s going on (it’s all so complicated!)? So what’s that? A not-new bit of the “all new” episode? Maybe they should call it “virtually all new” or “all new with the exception of a bit you can skip if you’re up to date on the story so far,” but they can’t really in good conscience call it “all new.”

Then again, these are the same people who will refer to a show as a “hit” before it’s had its premiere. How is that possible? Have they come up with their own definition of “hit,” kind of like the way the has seen fit to redefine “,” “war,” “patriot,” and “healthy forests.” Maybe if they like it, it’s a hit. “We really hit the nail on the head with , don’t you think?” “Oh, yes sir, ‘hit’ is the word.”

Car companies do the same thing. How many times have they announced the latest iteration of some model by telling us that they’ve “rebuilt it from the ground up, completely rethinking everything.” You have to wonder how many meetings they held before they decided it would have four wheels.

Is it really that big a deal for something to be new? Was the old version so god-awful that you won’t even consider looking at something unless you’re assured it’s new new new new? I’m reminded of that scene in in which Henry goes to dinner at Mary X’s house and meets her parents for the first time:

Mr. X: We’ve got chicken tonight. Strangest damn things. They’re man-made. Little damn things, smaller than my fist – but they’re new!…… I’m Bill.

Henry: Hello. I’m Henry.

Mrs. X: Henry’s at Lappell’s factory.

Mr. X: So, printin’s yer business, eh? Plumbin’s mine. Thirty years! I’ve watched this neighborhood change from pastures to the hell-hole it is now! I put every damn pipe in this town!

Mary X: Dad!..

Mrs. X: Bill…

Mr. X: People think pipes grow in their homes! Well they sure as hell don’t. Look at my knees! Look at my knees!

Mrs. X: Bill…

Mr. X: Are ya hungry?

Mrs. X: Bill…

And we know how well that worked out…

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