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Thread: Reality TV: what happened?

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    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Reality TV: what happened?

    Remember when reality tv used to be unique and cool? Now it seems like reality shows are as ubiquitous as crappy infomercials on late-night tv, and most of them suck just as much. IMO reality TV was a good idea gone terribly wrong, kind of like screwing up an apple cider recipe.

    There is some reality tv programming that has withstood the test of time (Cops and American Idol come to mind). But there have been far more shows that have been, frankly, just trash: washed-up celebrity live-ins, date-this-loser competitions, Big Brother, and anything on MTV What do you think have been the worst reality tv shows? Was there a moment it turned, or "jumped the shark" a la Happy Days, so to speak?

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    Cyburbian KSharpe's avatar
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    I think it all was lost when "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire" came on. I believe that was 2000. I think it was the first show to slowly eliminate "unworthy" ladies week by week. After that, you had Temptation Island (let's divide up barely functioning couples and force them to watch their significant others cheating), The Batchelor and Batchelorette with their vomitous orgy-like "dates", etc.

    Dishonorable mention goes to Rock of Love, on VH1. Everytime I catch a glimpse of it I die a little inside.

    I'm also ashamed to say I've been watching Celebrity Rehab. I just like reality shows about drugs.
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    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    I think reality shows have been replaced with musical shows (American Idol, Next Great American Band, Don't Forget the Lyrics, Dancing with the Stars, etc.) and medical dramas (House, CSI, Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice, etc.). Before reality shows and medical dramas, it was millionaire game shows (Millionaire, Greed, etc.). TV goes through cycles.
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    Cyburbian Plus PlannerGirl's avatar
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    I don't know that reality TV was ever any good but then I am one of those "most TV sucks" people
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin

    Remember this motto to live by: "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'WOO- HOO what a ride!'"

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    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by hilldweller View post
    Remember when reality tv used to be unique and cool?
    No. It was/is different, but it was never "cool".
    I found you a new motto from a sign hanging on their wall…"Drink coffee: do stupid things faster and with more energy"

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    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    The first 'reality' show that I remember seeing was on PBS with a British family trying to live under the conditions that a Victorian era urban family would have experienced. I thought it was somewhat interesting, mostly because of the historical context. All my interest went away when American television jumped on the concept and predictably went the low road to pull in viewers.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    The distinction between game shows vs a reality shows is one that has never been clear to me. Aren't most reality shows simply contests? If so, would 'Almost Anything Goes' qualify as a proto-reality show? What about 'Candid Camera'?
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian craines's avatar
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    I never really got into "reality shows" mainly for the fact that how real are they and who really wants to watch conceptualize drivel produce by a hollywood numnut who's closest brush with our reality is when he has hire a new maid or needs a design for his "ranch".

    the shows are so highly contrived that they hold no intrest.
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    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Bubba View post
    No. It was/is different, but it was never "cool".
    I thought Survivor was cool when it debuted.

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    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by hilldweller View post
    I thought Survivor was cool when it debuted.
    Eh - just my opinion. I think I watched part of the debut episode of it - there just wasn't anything about the whole concept that generated any interest on my part. I'll agree that it was unique.
    I found you a new motto from a sign hanging on their wall…"Drink coffee: do stupid things faster and with more energy"

  11. #11
    Cyburbian cch's avatar
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    I admit, I dig the VH1 reality shows; Celebrity Rehab, My Fair Brady, The Surreal Life..., but I can do without Flavor of Love or Rock of Love.

    But, Bravo, by far as the best reality shows. I love Project Runway, and even Real Housewives of Orange County, and I'll probably get into this new Millionaire Matchmaker show.

    A&E, too... with Paranormal State, Intervention and The First 48. I consider these to fall into the "reality show" catagory, even though they aren't competitions, because they aren't scripted.

    I can do without any of the network tv reality shows though. Never got into Survivor, American Idol, Big Brother or any of those.

    Okay, I watch way too much tv. And I miss good sitcoms .

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    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by PlannerGirl View post
    I don't know that reality TV was ever any good but then I am one of those "most TV sucks" people
    Lump me in this category.

    After a couple Family Guy episodes last night, the TV went off and I went to read with a cup of tea.
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

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    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    I watched the first season of "Survivor" and then part of the one in the Marquesas Islands (because I long to go there).

    The thing I notice about reality shows is they tend to be populated with people I would normally avoid in real life - jerks, divas, drama queens, a-holes, super A personalities, and so on. I don't like these people in my life. Why would I want to watch them?
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

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    Cyburbian MacheteJames's avatar
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    Reality TV was always brain-numbingly god awful. I cancelled my Cable TV last week. It's not worth the $35 a month for what's out there these days.

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    Cyburbian KSharpe's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by cch View post
    I admit, I dig the VH1 reality shows; Celebrity Rehab, My Fair Brady, The Surreal Life..., but I can do without Flavor of Love or Rock of Love.

    But, Bravo, by far as the best reality shows. I love Project Runway, and even Real Housewives of Orange County, and I'll probably get into this new Millionaire Matchmaker show.

    A&E, too... with Paranormal State, Intervention and The First 48. I consider these to fall into the "reality show" catagory, even though they aren't competitions, because they aren't scripted.

    I can do without any of the network tv reality shows though. Never got into Survivor, American Idol, Big Brother or any of those.

    Okay, I watch way too much tv. And I miss good sitcoms .
    Sometimes, I think you are my long lost twin lol. Although, I was disappointed by Paranormal State. Way too much demon stuff.
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    Cyburbian WSU MUP Student's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by ofos View post
    The first 'reality' show that I remember seeing was on PBS with a British family trying to live under the conditions that a Victorian era urban family would have experienced.
    Are you sure you are not confusing this with an episode of the Simpsons?
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    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Off-topic:
    Quote Originally posted by WSU MUP Student View post
    Are you sure you are not confusing this with an episode of the Simpsons?
    What do you think the Simpsons was parodying?

    The Simpsons is great and all, but I doubt they would have the ability to generate that concept on thier own.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

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    Cyburbian cch's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by KSharpe View post
    Sometimes, I think you are my long lost twin lol. Although, I was disappointed by Paranormal State. Way too much demon stuff.
    I know, we really seem to like a lot of the same stuff. I guess we are the only ones who aren't ashamed to admit our love for reality shows on here . I hear ya on Paranormal State. It can never compete with Ghost Hunters on SciFi, IMO.

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    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by mendelman View post
    Off-topic:

    What do you think the Simpsons was parodying?

    The Simpsons is great and all, but I doubt they would have the ability to generate that concept on thier own.
    It was called the 1900 house. I watched bits of it, it was very good. Now I just remember their oldest child, a 17 year old girl, struggling to keep up with all the housework. I think they hired a maid or something, who also had to live "1900 style."

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    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    PBS also ran a reality show called "Frontier House", where two families and a couple lived pioneer style in Montana. It was a good show. The people arrived in the spring and stayed through to autumn, cutting hay, raising garden crops and chickens, cutting wood, building fences and living circa 1880. They were evaluated at the end of the summer on how they were prepared for winter. Only the couple was ready - the man having cut wood all summer and having not only enough wood for himself but also to sell to his neighbors. His girlfriend also made preseves, I believe. The couple were very likeable, but the two families were not. One of the men liked the experience so much, he did some touring discussing his experience and, following a divorce, went to live more back to nature.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

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    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by WSU MUP Student View post
    Are you sure you are not confusing this with an episode of the Simpsons?
    While I'm a Simpsons addict, I'm not confused. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/1900house/ The 1900 House was on PBS in 2000.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

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