Books are not superior to films or television. Of course, books can contain a good deal of information that cannot be translated via films or television. On the flip side, ask yourself what would affect you more–reading about a murder or actually seeing one take place before you? Good films and television create realistic portrayals of various scenarios. We emotionally and mentally react to these portrayals despite the fact that we know we are watching actors with a production crew in front of them. Camera angles, scores, and special effects add the details that we need for emotional and mental involvement.
We all must process the information that films, television, and books possess. As for reading, this requires a lot more effort on our part and includes a “pause” before digesting this information. In a film or television show, we hear a loud knock at the door and we get surprised. With a book, we have to read that there is a loud knock at the door and process this “surprise” with a pause. Using our own imaginations is wonderful but the screams, shrills, and intense emotions elicited in movie theaters do not transpire when reading words on pages.
As far as “substance” goes, I admit that you have to do a lot of panning in films and television before you come across gold. I can honestly state that the gold I have come across was well worth the search.