I blame MTV. They are the culprits in this nonsense. In 1992, MTV aired The Real World, a jambalaya of young people from across America, living together in a gigantic apartment.
This is the true story… of seven strangers… picked to live in a house…work together and have their lives taped… to find out what happens… when people stop being polite… and start getting real…The Real World.
Probably about as real as it is going to get when 7 strangers live together. It was amusing and entertaining. At first. Then it seemed like each new cast would get a little more weird, a little more outrageous. Soon it had its own spinoff, Road Rules Challenge. And on and on it goes.
The problem for me lies is making “reality” TV stars into icons. For doing nothing. The are famous for being famous. They have given nothing in regards to society. They just are. The most famous of all of these are, of course, the Kardashians. I don’t know anybody who says the like this show or these people but the E channel keeps on putting them on. I can’t wrap my head around why these people are so popular.
I do believe that the number one reason reality television has become popular is that we like to compare our lives to the lives on the TV screen and say, “Well, at least my life isn’t that bad.” Jersey Shore and The Housewives of Name You City are prime examples of this.
Let me give you some more reality shows and what they are about?
Growing up Gotti – Follow the zany adventures of the children of crime boss, Don Gotti, as they raise a ruckus wherever they go!
Wife Swap – Enough said.
Hoarders – Where do they find these people? I think there is a three foot high minimum of trash that needs to be climbing your living room walls before you are considered for the show.
Cheaters – Watch as cheating spouses and significant others are caught with their pants down. Literally.
RuPaul’s Drag Race – See which flaming homosexual can win the drag race of the week!
16 and Pregnant – What could be wrong here?
Toddlers and Tiaras – Look and see overweight mothers pimp out their 5-year-old for a trophy!
The Simple Life – A weekly contest on who could be more stupid, Nicole Ritchie or Paris Hilton.
I do have to admit there has been some good entertainment also. The Amazing Race, Cops, Iron Chef, American Idol, The Biggest Loser, and Duck Dynasty have all had their moments.
The fact is there is a producer behind the camera directing the “reality” stars to “act” in the most provocative way possible. Why? For the ratings. Period. End of story.
The Fantasy of Reality TV.