After rushing home last night to watch The Bachelorette(which by the way Ashley picked the right guy!), it came to my attention that reality TV now takes up just over half my TV viewing.
It all started with a show called Survivor which pitted 16 “survivors” against each other and the viewers at home were instantly hooked. Everyday normal people were automatically put into a good or evil catagory and we watched as they battled it out for a cool $1 Million bucks. Survivor is still going strong at Season 23 now(I stopped watching at season eight) and seems to be impossible to break. Then a few moths later a new show came along called Big Brother. Night after night we sat there and watched a group of people sit around in a house, complete challenges and vote each other out. We could go on to the show’s website and watch footage 24/7 and become a part of the show through online voting.
My reality TV addiction had just begun.
Over a decade ago, these shows began the era of ordinary everyday people getting there 15 minutes of fame. Reality TV is easy to produce, cheap to make and always has a audience of some sort. You cannot go a night now without some sort of reality TV on your television set. From cooks(Hell’s Kitchen), models(ANTM), singing(American Idol), home improvement(Extreme Makeover: HE), Romance(Bachelor/Bachelorette) or housewives(Real Housewives BH, OC, NJ, NY etc) there is a show about anything and everything.
The thing against reality TV is that a lot of shows now seem to fabricated, scripted, full of drama or in this little bubble. For example, people wonder why romance or dating shows such as The Bachelor/The Bachelorette have such terrible track records when it comes to relationships. Out of the 15 seasons of the Bachelor and 7 of the Bachelorette(including last night’s) only 3 have ended in happily ever after(Jason/Molly, Trista/Ryan and Ali/Roberto) and we are all cheering for the Season 7 couple Ashley and J.P. Why is the track record so bad, it could be that a lot of these dates are unrealistic and wouldn’t happen in real life(Can I say had my 1st date in Taiwan, South Africa or Fiji) and couples are shocked back into reality when the show is over.
Even the stars of Hollywood have gotten in on the act appearing on shows such Dancing with the Stars and Stars on Ice. Stars have invited camera crews into there own homes to allow there fans to follow there lives or give a jump start to there careers. Without these shows do you think we would be all huddled around the water cooler taking about the Osbournes or Gene Simmons and his family. Any celeb not on the A-list or even the B-list have found that reality TV is one of the easiest ways to get back into the spotlight as shows such as Dancing with the Stars have made us fall in love again with actors/actress and singers that we have forgotten about or that have rode off into the sunset. Housewives, Kardashians and the Jersey Shore have graced our TV sets with the newest news in there lives, where they go and what’s the “it” thing to wear.
Why is Reality TV so popular? Because reality shows showcase real people doing real things. Certain shows make us feel better and others make us feel a lot smarter and wiser then the people on it. We love the idea of putting random everyday people together and seeing all the drama unfold before our very eyes.