It seems as though in this day and age everyone is desperately striving for their 15 minutes of fame. No matter what it takes, from singing in front of a few judges to having your pregnancy documented for the country to share with you, America today is obsessed with the lime light.
When you turn on the TV, the majority of what can be seen is reality TV. When it first started, it was somewhat overlooked by society. It appeared to be an eccentric fad perhaps. Now, it’s hard to scroll through the TV guide and see something that isn’t reality-based.
Unfortunately, as this type of programming grows and grows every year, it seems as though reality TV is losing its class. Reality TV is being tainted with shows recording drunken adventures of 20-somethings and seeing how far a group of women can be pushed in order to win a given prize. Shows such as Jersey Shore and The Bad Girls Club shove a very negative image into the lime light and create a persona that younger, less informed generations try and mirror.
This is not to say that all reality TV is bad. In fact, different channels are now hosting primarily reality-based-shows but in a more educational and realistic way. These types of programs allow viewers to learn different cooking techniques, home décor ideas, how to train your dog and many more helpful tips on just how to make life a little easier.
I must admit, I am an avid viewer of some of the less informative reality TV shows. I, along with much of the world, planted myself in front of my TV every Thursday night to watch the Jersey Shore cast stumble around Seaside Heights. To me, viewing these types of shows, is entertaining because it is obvious how staged and outrageous these situations are. In actual reality, barely any of what takes place on the show would happen to your average person. It’s the exaggeration that keeps me enticed by these programs.
These types of shows lead me to wonder why this behavior has become so popular. Is it because we have caved and are giving them the attention they are looking for? Or is it simply because as the country evolves with the changing times, these shows are trying to duplicate what society is becoming?
Whatever the case may be, do not fear. No viewer is forcibly subjected to these types of shows without some relief.
Other shows, such as Cupcake Wars or Duck Dynasty, show the more realistic side of fame. In Cupcake Wars , or any show on the Food Network or Travel Channel, real people with real jobs go on the show in order to better their situations. They are not looking for fame but are looking, many times, for a way to boost their own way of life. Sometimes this can be done by taking their winnings and putting it towards their restaurant. Other times it’s taken and used to fund a much needed family vacation.
Shows similar to these are all a breath of fresh air in the party crazed worlds of Jersey Shore and The Bad Girls Club. While many may find enjoyment in watching what appears to be the most exciting life they have ever witnessed, flipping to the Discovery Channel or TLC may not be the worst choice in the world.
As far as what can be done to change this growing pattern in TV, I honestly think that this type of attention will not go away easily. It is too popular and too successful for stations to just rid their schedules of it. The bigger question for this situation though is not what could be done to stop it but would TV watchers want it to be stopped.