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The Un-Reality of Reality TV


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#1 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 03:45 PM

Is anyone else out there getting turned off by all the "reality" shows taking over tv? Maybe I'm in the minority, but most of this stuff is garbage. Yeah, they get ratings, but at some point I'd think people would start tuning these shows out.

Bickering housewives, obviously staged events, contestants/participants encouraged to act like spoiled brats, its all just so phony. But in a world of 200 channels, they draw what amounts to a large audience these days.

Last year, one of my once favorite channels - History - saw a huge increase in ratings. Was it from a 12-part series on the Chester A Arthur administration? an in-depth exploration of the women's suffrage movement? Nope. Ice Road Truckers and Pawn Stars. Arrrrrrrrrgh!
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#2 OFFLINE   Devo1237

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 03:51 PM

I've been turned off by them for years. The only "reality" show I have ever enjoyed watching is The Amazing Race, which is more like a sporting event than a reality show in my mind.

The worst is those shows like the Kardashians where everything is so obviously scripted. They hire writers who can't write for actors that can't act, and somehow people still watch. This is what the Mayans predicted...

#3 OFFLINE   dave29

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 03:52 PM

I agree, most of these shoes are horrible and you can easily tell it is all staged.

I do watch Pawn Stars, I know it is fake, but I like seeing some of the staged items brought in and a History lesson given. They obviously know what is being brought in ahead of time and they either do their homework, or are given information about the said item.

Way too many fake reality shows out there right now. The sad part is, you can easily tell they are fake.

#4 ONLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 03:56 PM

That's why I call'em Fakeality.

Ain't nuthin' 'real' about 'em.
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#5 OFFLINE   Drucifer

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 04:02 PM

The reality shows I can't stand are those base around individuals or families.

Shows with a business-like atmosphere - Pawn Star, America Pickers, American Restoration, Storage Wars are fun and somewhat interesting.

The reality competition shows are watchable, but of little interest to me.

The adventure one like Ax Men are also somewhat interesting.

Edited by Drucifer, 31 January 2012 - 05:25 PM.

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#6 OFFLINE   Scott Kocourek

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 04:12 PM

The reality shows I can' stand are those base around individuals or families.

Shows with a business-like atmosphere - Pawn Star, America Pickers, American Restoration, Storage Wars are fun and somewhat interesting.

The reality competition shows are watchable, but of little interest to me.

The adventure one like Ax Men are also somewhat interesting.


I think we found something we agree on. I would add shows like Survivor and The Amazing Race are more like extended game shows to me and I do quite enjoy them.

The Housewives, Real World and Jersey Shore are all shows I am proud to say I have never watched.

I figured I would put my opinion in here because every "reality show" thread I start someone has to pop in and tell us all how stupid the shows I like are. :)

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#7 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 04:14 PM

I never got into reality shows in the first place.
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#8 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 04:14 PM

As others have stated, there's different types of reality shows.

I like Axe Men, Black Gold, Amazing Race, Survivor, America's Got Talent, COPS. etc.

I won't watch what Wikipedia refers to as DocuSoaps (The Simple Life, Hogan Knows Best, etc.), Lifestyle Changes (Celebrity Fit Club, Trading Spouses, etc.), Makeovers (Extreme Makeover, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, etc.), or Dating (Bachelor, Meet my Folks, etc.) type reality shows.

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
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#9 OFFLINE   BosFan

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 04:44 PM

I always considered Cops, at least the first few years, to be the only true reality program. Otherwise none them really keep my interest, unless American Idol is a reality show.

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#10 OFFLINE   klang

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 05:08 PM

I don't know if the contests on Food Network are considered Reality TV but that's as close as I get. Never watched any of the other stuff.

#11 OFFLINE   dave29

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 05:10 PM

As others have stated, there's different types of reality shows.

I like Axe Men, Black Gold, Amazing Race, Survivor, America's Got Talent, COPS. etc.

I won't watch what Wikipedia refers to as DocuSoaps (The Simple Life, Hogan Knows Best, etc.), Lifestyle Changes (Celebrity Fit Club, Trading Spouses, etc.), Makeovers (Extreme Makeover, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, etc.), or Dating (Bachelor, Meet my Folks, etc.) type reality shows.


I used to like Black Gold too. It seems to be somewhat staged anymore....

#12 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 05:30 PM

I used to like Black Gold too. It seems to be somewhat staged anymore....


Bummer, I actually missed the last season (I think, not even sure when it is on/coming back - or is it on now?)

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
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#13 OFFLINE   Laxguy

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 05:39 PM

Has there ever been a so-called reality show that isn't staged to some degree or other?
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#14 OFFLINE   Alan Gordon

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 05:52 PM

I watch:

"American Idol," "The X-Factor," "Dancing With The Stars," "Rachel Vs. Guy", etc. I am also going to try "The Voice" this year.

I enjoy some of the competition shows. I'd rather be tortured than watch the other kinds... :eek2:

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#15 OFFLINE   dave29

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 06:32 PM

Bummer, I actually missed the last season (I think, not even sure when it is on/coming back - or is it on now?)


It's been on for several weeks. Not worth watching anymore. Pretty fake.

#16 OFFLINE   Laxguy

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 06:51 PM

I watch:

"American Idol," "The X-Factor," "Dancing With The Stars," "Rachel Vs. Guy", etc. I am also going to try "The Voice" this year.

I enjoy some of the competition shows. I'd rather be tortured than watch the other kinds...


Are competition shows nearly universally considered "reality shows"?
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#17 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 06:54 PM

It's been on for several weeks. Not worth watching anymore. Pretty fake.


Weird, I could have sworn I searched for it a few weeks ago and just searched for it again. All I get are some VOD.

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
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#18 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 07:03 PM

I don't know if the contests on Food Network are considered Reality TV but that's as close as I get. Never watched any of the other stuff.


I sometimes watch Top Chef on Bravo and Chopped on Food Network, but I'm more interested in how inventive they are with creating great food (hot chilis in ice cream!?!?!?!) than I am in any drama between the personalities.


Are competition shows nearly universally considered "reality shows"?


I think they get lumped in now since so many of them are designed to highlight the characters of the contestants. Old style game shows were about the game (Jeopardy is a modern classic) where the contestants were pretty much inter-changable.

Some people trace the origins of the modern "reality" genre to the first season of Real World on MTV. It was a groundbreaking show, and since nothing like it had been on tv in a long time, the participants were more "real" on camera than today's highly staged and scripted reality shows.
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#19 OFFLINE   Alan Gordon

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 07:05 PM

Are competition shows nearly universally considered "reality shows"?


Yep... :rolleyes:

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#20 OFFLINE   Laxguy

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 08:02 PM

Some people trace the origins of the modern "reality" genre to the first season of Real World on MTV. It was a groundbreaking show, and since nothing like it had been on tv in a long time, the participants were more "real" on camera than today's highly staged and scripted reality shows.


Ah, thanks. But that kinda means "An American Family", eg. The Loud Family- It was a PBS show in 1973- that's often cited as the first reality show- gets pushed to the back burner. The "Real World" didn't air till about 20 years later- so, yes, not done for a long time!
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#21 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 12:21 AM

As an old guy reading this. I thought reality TV has been around forever, we just didn't know what it was. So I checked the subject at Wikipedia:

Precedents for television that portrayed people in unscripted situations began in the 1940s. Debuting in 1948, Allen Funt's hidden camera Candid Camera show (based on his previous 1947 radio show, Candid Microphone) broadcast unsuspecting ordinary people reacting to pranks." In 1948, talent search shows Ted Mack's Original Amateur Hour and Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts featured amateur competitors and audience voting. The Miss America Pageant, first broadcast in 1954, was a competition where the winner achieved status as a national celebrity.

In the 1950s, game shows Beat the Clock and Truth or Consequences involved contestants in wacky competitions, stunts, and practical jokes. The Groucho Marx-hosted game show, You Bet Your Life, was primarily composed of Marx' prescripted comebacks to what was most often candid interviews of the contestants, although some 'contestants' were actors.

The radio series Nightwatch (1951–1955), which tape-recorded the daily activities of Culver City, California police officers, also helped pave the way for reality television. The series You Asked For It (1950–1959), in which viewer requests dictated content, was an antecedent of today's audience-participation reality TV elements, in which viewers cast votes to help determine the course of events.

The article goes on to cover the 1960's and later.

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#22 ONLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 02:29 AM

Are competition shows nearly universally considered "reality shows"?


I say they should be classified as game shows where they would fall under different regulations.

No matter how you dress it up, or which island or jungle the film crew and production company and support staff ship their tons of equipment to, 'Survivor" is still a game show -- a group of people vying for a cash prize.
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#23 OFFLINE   renbutler

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 09:22 AM

I find Storm Chasers entertaining.

Yeah, some of the drama between storms is played up artificially. But you can't stage a tornado...

#24 OFFLINE   SPACEMAKER

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 09:23 AM

I watch a few of the "reality" shows on Discovery and History simply because I enjoy them. It's obvious that much of it is staged and I am OK with it because I understand the producers need to create entertaining segments. The key is to just not take it too seriously. It's only TV.

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#25 OFFLINE   Nick

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 09:56 AM

I agree, most of these shoes are horrible and you can easily tell it is all staged.

I do watch Pawn Stars, I know it is fake, but I like seeing some of the staged items brought in and a History lesson given. They obviously know what is being brought in ahead of time and they either do their homework, or are given information about the said item.

Way too many fake reality shows out there right now. The sad part is, you can easily tell they are fake.

No, the really sad part is that people watch any of the so-called "reality" shows at all. I've always thought that the networks and producers of reality shows target the lower echelon of our society.

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