I love real television – television that uses a well-crafted storyline, is filled with talented actors playing interesting roles – the kind of television that is the best kind of pretend. Reality television – the kind that uses a camera crew to chronicle the exploits of made-for-television-celebrities – is the worst kind of
I know, I know, reality TV has tons of loyal viewers, who, even if they continue to read the rest of this post, probably won’t change their minds, but it won’t keep me from telling my television reality. Reality TV is not real.
- The cast is paid – have you ever gotten a check for puking in the hot tub?
- Cameramen are everywhere – do you have them in your living room?
- There are multiple takes – remember the last time you got to re-slap your brother?
Many of you will tell me you KNOW all that, so what’s the problem? These programs take very little money or imagination to produce, making them very appealing to the television business. It takes far fewer viewers to break even on Bad Girls Club than on NCIS. That means less production of great television drama because we are willing to accept “reality TV,” which in reality is just bad actors in cheap sets with flimsy plots.
We’ve already lost our manufacturing industries to China – I can’t lose Aaron Sorkin to Snooki!