Monday, September 13, 2010

Reality is killing Creativity

One of the main problems with the world today (poverty and Bin Laden aside) is that too many people care what the Kadashians are doing. We can thank the Ozzbournes for it too. You will all remember a few years back when the Ozzbournes first came on to television. It was huge, everyone wanted to talk about how mental Ozzy was and how much his wife swore. I may have tuned in for half an episode to see what the fuss was about but I didn’t stick around after the commercial break.

This unleashed a swarm of has-been rock stars letting us into their homes to see how crazy they all were, but what was worse, the people loved it. Now there are hundreds of these types of ‘reality TV shows’ all over foxtel.

I use the word ‘reality’ very loosely because in no way do any of these shows represent reality. They are normally focused on the rich and famous who have much more money then sense, intelligence or purpose.

While hung-over at a female friends house one Sunday morning I was outnumbered by about three to one by girls who wanted to put on season who-gives-a-shit of The Hills. Being outnumbered and hung-over I didn’t put up much more than a groan and thought I could use it as an opportunity to check out some hot girls (I wasn’t disappointed). Now for those of you who haven’t seen this show it’s basically about a group of hot LA girls who have a lot of money and hang around LA talking about really important issues like who someone brought to a party and how much of a bitch that someone is and blah, blah, blah.

I couldn’t help but notice while watching this show how high the production value was. For instance all the conversations these girls were having were so well lit they looked like a film. This would be almost impossible for a team working as a ‘fly on the wall’ crew. They would have to pre-empt where they were going, send people ahead, light it where they think they would sit and then tweak it all just as they sat down which would interrupt the shit out of the restaurant.

I later found out from someone that the way this show works is that if x has a fight with y the producers ask them about it and find out what happened, then get them to re-enact the same fight the following day so that can shoot and light it properly. How is that real?

The other crowd favorites are the dating/reality shows. Farmer Wants a Wife, The Bachelor, The Bachorlorette, there are a few others (the names of which escape me) but they’re all basically the same show, a guy or girl picks a husband/wife (they are actually choosing someone they will spend the rest of their lives with on a TV show) out of a bunch of suitors. The worst part is people sit around at home desperate to find out whom he or she chooses, LIKE IT’S GOING TO LAST FOREVER!

Masterchef is one of the most watched shows on television, each week it’s on it gets a record breaking crowd tuning in. I walked past one day to see a few minutes of it and the segment that was on (which seemed to last most of the episode) consisted of the contestants trying a dish and then guessing what ingredients were in it, come on! How is that exciting? That was the whole show! The most infuriating part though is after someone tries what is obviously a carrot it then cuts to that same person after the challenge explaining what you just saw: 

“Yeah I tried the carrot and I was 95% sure it was a carrot” Then it cuts back to the challenge.
“Umm, carrot?”
Five second pause while the judges stand around looking like twats.

What a waste of time.

The only commendable addition to this genre are the game shows on steroids. The Amazing Races and Survivors of the world. I don’t watch either but I understand how people would find these entertaining. At least here we see people use intelligence and wit to win a realistic prize like money or a car, not a wife or a husband.

I have only mentioned a couple of shows here when there are thousands of ridiculous shows out there. At the moment on free to air television there are two shows, TWO SHOWS! About random breath testing. When have you ever pulled up to a RBT and thought, you know what? This would make a great TV show. The TV exec who pulled up to an RBT and thought that, must have been drunk!

All this while there are phenomenal series out there like The Sopranos.

-Adam Bovino


  1. Masterchef is the worst show on TV. It's made by the producers of The Biggest Loser and they follow that shitty formula you said of cutting between shit happening and the contestants talking about it. It's like fake suspense, they make you think something important is going on and the result will change the world and then the contestants add on a sop story about their father leaving them, then they pull through the challenge and their father comes out and everyone cries and then it cuts back to the contestant talking about it and she cries again then the father does an interview and he cries then they cut to an ad for pizza hut.

  2. You know what I find fucked. That there is a large portion of the population against gay marriage, because its "sacred" and should only be between a man and woman... all the while shows like the Bachelor are raping the 'sanctity' of marriage with each episode.

    I couldn't agree more with this article. I fucking HATE, I fucking LOATHE shows like Keeping Up with the Kardashians. How did it end up with a spin-off: "Kortney and Khloe take Miami" ... whats with all the K's? It's as if they were bred for reality tv.

  3. Man, this article was waiting to happen. First off, I watched the whole season of the Australian Masterchef this year, knowing full fell what I was getting myself into but just like every reality TV show they have some formula that make you "care" about the people and I was hooked - I couldn't miss an episode. After the finale, when Adam won, I cared for probably about 2 minutes. I'll never watch that show again.

    The same thing happened with Big Brother. I was hooked on that show, and I don't even know why. The first season was awesome, because the people on it were actually 'real', cuz the show wasn't a hit yet so they were themselves. As it went on though the producers realised that sex sells and only 20 somethings were allowed on and used the show as a springboard into more commendable efforts like winning prizes and flopping their tits in Zoo.

    The only reality TV show I would watch now is something like the UK Masterchef (and it's NOTHING like the Aussie one), where they don't drag things out and the show is set up like a tournament, all filmed in one kitchen with only 4 contestants at a time.

    Anywho, thanks for writing this dude!

    Soprano's ftw.

  4. agreed, it's taking timeslots where dramas and comedies could be.

  5. el shit crap dick locoSeptember 20, 2010 at 8:04 PM

    far out...

    hamish's link really upset me.

    fucking peice of shit crap dick.

  6. I don't even know what to say about that link.

    You think you've seen the most fucked up show anyone could imagine, then some fuckwit comes up with that.