In recent times, I've been using sub-titles to help follow programmes. I'm not losing my hearing, but I have lost some top end, so sub-titles are really good for me.
I've been watching dozens of 'The Big Bang Theory' episodes but yesterday I came across something that I've never come across before. In one episode, instead of sub-titles, it had a sort of vocal commentary. Near the beggining, the guys are sitting around having a discussion, when Howard took his mobile out of his pocket. A female voice, with an English accent, chipped in saying, "Howard takes his mobile from his pocket". Soon after that there was another one. I stopped watching it at that point.
I assume it's for visually impaired people, who can hear everything but can't see things like Howard taking a phone out of his pocket. But there's no setting in the system for visually impaired people, so where did that come from? Is it just that they aired the wrong version of that episode? If so, out of curiosity, where are those versions aired?
So that's what audio description is. I've never even turned it on to see what it does. However, whilst that is audio description that's actually playing, there is an error with the episode because audio description is OFF and yet I still hear it. Sub-titles are ON, but, uniquely for The Big Bang Theory, that episode doesn't say that it has sub-titles. It also doesn't say that doesn't have sub-titles. It doesn't say anything about them. It's a faulty episode.
You aren't alone in hearing the background music in some programmes make dialogue difficult to follow. It's been happening for some years now, and everyone finds it the same. The makers of those programmes really ought to learn how to make them. Better still, they ought to get totally different jobs, so that other people can make programmes that people can follow.
ETA: TBBT is being shown on E4 (ch.106). I don't (and won't) subscribe to Netflix either.
I also think that background music is awful, and really does not add anything to the programme, infact it often takes something away, completely unnecessary and extremely annoying. I had to buy a sound bar as in many programmes it was quite impossible to hear any spoken word. Even now there are some programmes where the sound quality of the spoken word is very poor, then subtitles are your only option if you want to watch that particular programme.
Not the correct forum for this I know but I feel better for a good winge.