Reality TV – The Oxymoron

Why call it reality TV when it’s everything but? Why is reality TV defining and dominating TV today? Is the embarrassment, mean spiritedness, sometimes stupidity, stereotyping, sexism and humiliation addictive or even desirable? It has taken over all the genres of TV shows from talent search to job search to game shows and even hidden cameras! Not to forget sports, dating and hoaxing! 

If ‘The Bachelor’ or ‘Fear Factor’ doesn’t offend you, you’re most likely a guy! Coz in that case you either have no interest/opinion or you love it for the obvious reasons.  When I talk about this to friends, I have gotten back “Not all shows fall under this stereo type, take apprentice or American idol for example” Oh wait! These two shows are the ‘good ones’ used to defend reality TV? In that case, they are just as bad as the bad ones (however that’s possible!).  

When apprentice was first introduced almost 3 years ago I watched the first season and actually thought this one had a shot! It was edgy, interesting and most of the times even smart! I enjoyed that it was like a televised job interview concentrating on one task every week done by very competent people and the whole one hour that aired was all about the task and the evaluation of the process. But then the second season began with the pressure of the extreme success, fame and TV ratings it had gotten from the first. And there it began going down hill hitting an all time low this season along with the opinion I had of Trump.  Now the actual task is about 10 minutes of the show, the evaluation of the process is another 10 minutes which probably is in there only because Trump gets to say “you’re fired” and the remaining 40 minutes is about romance, flirting, gorgeous women in swimsuits, gorgeous men in swim suits and gorgeous view of the city and of course a very high school drama’ish ‘who backstabbed whom’ scenario.  

Incase you haven’t noticed, everything in the show has to be gorgeous (artificial) which now makes me wonder has this show been inspired by or slowly transforming into “The bachelor”? Don’t even get me started on that show!!

American Idol on the other hand has a stereotype of a different kind. Apparently it’s not enough to be the best singer to win a singing show. How crazy of us to assume a talent search show would be about talent!!  

Take a look at some of the current disasters that air on TV:

Laguna Beach, Real world, Road rules, Temptation island, The Anna Nicole Show, The Osbournes, Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica, The Girls Next Door, The Surreal life, The restaurant, Big brother, America’s Got Talent, American Inventor, So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing with the Stars, Skating with Celebrities, Celebrity Duets, Fear Factor, American inventor, The Bachelor, Date my mom, Who wants to be a superhero, The Swan, Celebrity fit club, Beauty and the geek, Flavor of Love, Blind Date, Elimidate, My big fat obnoxious finance, Joe Millionaire 

Think of this as more of a stay away list. When you see any of the above , just trust me, switch the channel! I got only one thing to say….……REALLLLY? Is this what we get to watch when we want to sit back, relax and turn on the TV? Why not start a new channel just for this kind of crap and who ever wants to watch it can switch to that channel, instead of letting it grow like a virus and infiltrate regular TV. At the end of a tiring day, I sure could use a dose of regular good’ol comedy!


One Response

  1. Its a money spinner baby, thats why all the channels want to view it. You can watch what you call “embarrassment, mean spiritedness, sometimes stupidity, stereotyping, sexism and humiliation” from the privacy and comfort of your home. People love to see people fall, and now they can enjoy it through mainstream media, sitting on their couch. If you want to see true talent shows, watch India’s programming. Given the lack of Indian’s ability to embarrass, be mean spirited, stupid, stereotype, sex-up and humiliate, thanks to the lack of branding or the visual sophistication, the shows are all about true talent.

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