What, many poker diehards often wonder, is the point of Poker TV? Isn’t poker all about playing the game, as opposed to watching it? If that is the case, what possible value is there in having televised poker programs? If you are one of these thinkers then the ongoing spate of new poker programs must have you steaming, but the fact is they all serve a purpose and, in general, are very good for poker as a whole.
The Tournament Shows
Starting with the Big One, the World Series of Poker, and including the one that really made poker a TV spectator sport, the World Poker Tour, these shows cover the action in real life poker tournaments. These shows, like all poker programming, bring new people into the world of poker, which is to the good. In addition they help the newer players learn what tournament poker is all about, and give a lot of insight into the spicy world of poker pros as well.
The Celebrity Shows
Celebrity Poker Showdown and Hollywood Home Game were the first, quickly followed by E! Hollywood Hold’em and the like; these shows are part star-struck voyeurism and part poker. They are pure entertainment, although they play their part in getting people into the game as well. Occasionally some stars like Ben Affleck and Jennifer Tilly will surprise everyone and be very good at the game.
The Rest Of Them
From broadband Internet programs to TV’s cousin, radio shows and podcasts, there are plenty of new comers to poker media, and they offer value in every thing from following the tournament show format to targeting poker pros or offering advice.
The fact is that the flood of poker programs is good for the industry, and offers a lot of variety to all the different kinds of poker fans out there. And as any poker player looking at an open ended straight draw and a flush draw on the river with a huge pot at stake can tell you, choice is good.