Thanks to Greg over at the Talent Show for cluing me in to this video.
This is why I hate reality television! It’s so predictable, repetitive, and ridiculous. I know those are in fact the very reasons people enjoy watching it, but I have my own crazy and competitive friends who always say the same shit, thank you very much. I don’t need a television to get all the interpersonal drama I can shake a stick at.
One thing people don’t talk about much when they review reality television is how much of it is rigged. Even from day one of the firs Real World series, there were talks about story arcs, quotations taken out of context (to make them seem like a response to a situation when in fact the interview was done before that situation ever occurred), and semi-forced confrontations. Anyone who has worked in television knows that to a certain extent, these competitions are about as believable as professional wrestling.
What makes me a bit sad though is that at least in some of these competitive shows, the people trying to win don’t seem to be in on the joke. Like quiz shows in the fifties, it’s clear that sometimes the “winner” is picked not for their talents, but for their charisma–or in the case of reality television, for their bitchiness. More conflict equals more ratings, so they’ll get rid of the gorgeous model who keeps to herself and keep the shrewish one who hogs the house phone for three hours. Someday, after we’ve ended the Iraq war, reversed global warming, fixed the economy, and sent the Bush cabinet to prison for war crimes, we really need a Congressional hearing to make reality competitions, which are really just extended game shows, play fair.