Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Bad and Wrong

Some people like football... Some people like politics... I like reality TV... I always feel the need to apolgise for it, but I just find a lot of it fascinating, you just imagine what you'd do in the situation - and of course you can just veg out and not use your brain much to watch it...
One of the shows I watch is America's Next Top Model. I kind of got bored of it recently, it was getting very samey, but I've been catching up with the 10th season ('cycle') on Youtube, and woah, it's great reality TV - mainly because the contestants are so shameless and lacking in self-awareness.
Look at it this way. How would you want to be remembered if you were on TV? Because in ANTM, 'Fatima' seems to want to be famous for being the one who was vaginally circumcised. Yes, I'm not joking. This is how she introduces herself, this is her sob story, and this is what she wants to bring to America's attention. (Fatima is in the picture above - I don't think you can tell that she's been circumsised)
And then we have Marvita. How does she introduce herself? 'I'm Marvita and I was molested and abused.' In ANTM, to be molested and abused seems to be almost an essential quality. The more tears, the better. And every other sentence Marvita says has the key words 'I'm in therapy'. But honestly, is that really how you want to be remembered on national TV?
Over on my beloved Project Runway, a similar thing is happening, sort of. We're near the final, and suddenly the contestants are in tears because a family member has just died, and they want to win for them.
It's just cheap, cheap, cheap. Yes, of course all these things are tragic and horrible and upsetting - but I wonder how much of it all is genuine and how much of the tears we are supposed to believe (because call me a cynic, but if every ANTM contestant has been molested and if every Project Runway contestant is upset over a dead relative - well I'm sure at least one of them is lying - and that is very very naughty). It just cheapens it for people who really suffer.
And I'm not even going to talk about the utterly mental screaming that takes place every time Tyra Banks appears - its fucking ridiculous.
But I still love it all.

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