Thursday, December 20, 2007

Reality television

Is there no limit to what they’ll put on T.V.?

I will admit, I’m a reality television fan. But this morning I turned on the television to find that R&B singer Mario has a documentary on MTV called, “I Won’t Love You to Death: The Story of Mario and His Mom,” and was a little disappointed.

Apparently, Mario lets the cameras roll as he confronts his mom about her heroin addiction, checks her into rehab and works to keep her sober.

I mean, I watch a little bit of everything in the unscripted genre nowadays. America’s Next Top Model, Project Runway and even I Love New York (yes, I’m ashamed), but I was sad to see Mario pimping out this very personal situation.

I then started wondering how this show came about. Did someone from Mario’s camp call MTV and pitch the idea? Or did someone with MTV hear of Mario’s troubles and pitch the idea to him?

Let's imagine someone decides to hold an intervention for you. Not only is overwhelming that these people that know and love you are begging you to get help and change your ways but SURPRISE!...sitting next to your crying, pleading loved one is an unknown man holding a camera, preparing to broadcast your pain and embarrassment to the entire world.

Some could say that all reality shows exploit someone – the weak, the sick, the unintelligent – but I really felt like Mario’s situation was one that should have been handled privately.

With all of the reality shows these days, I keep wondering what they’ll air next.

I almost feel like there's no such thing as reality television anymore because these participants are becoming more and more like actors, playing the roles established by some of the original shows - i.e. the mean girl, the smart girl/guy, the extra religious girl/guy.

Do ya’ll think reality television has gotten out of hand or is it just a sign of what viewers want to see?

(And so I don’t feel so ashamed, what are some of your favorite reality shows? Or better yet, what are some of the more ridiculous ones you’ve seen?)
Photo courtesy of the Associated Press

1 comment:

Stephanie Bemrose said...

You're not alone. I also indulge in reality television. I don't have cable right now, but I have, in the past, LOVED me some Big Brother seasons, a few seasons here and there of Survivor, as well as the show Intervention on A&E. They capture people who are being set up for drug or shopping addiction interventions by telling them they're doing a documentary on drug use. Then their family sets up the intervention.

I've also been a fan of I Love New York. I used to watch Inked set in Vegas and also several other A&E reality shows like the one about the Gottis.

There's something appealing about watching people who are celebrities in their home environment, or seeing some women's fantasy of acting like a bitch to men repeatedly while they still continue to fight over you for the right to be with you. I like competitive shows like BB because you see how loyal people are or how they switch sides for the sake of money, and I think of how I would do it if I were in the same situation.