The Reality of Realty TV


I was recently working on a press release, ok make that three… finding my time stretched beyond belief and as I worked on pulling together the details I suddenly heard the tv in the background and the news of the moment was some crap about a ginormous goldfish that weighed as much as a bear. I looked up from my laptop and realized the next three commercials were about new reality shows. People competing in jungles with Bear Grylls and trying to catch fish. So I put my laptop aside and hit the guide button on my remote control and scanned…and the list took my breath away.



Beverly Hills Pawn, So You Think You Can Dance, Big Brother, Million Dollar Listing, The New Atlanta, and by the way when did Howie Mendel become the host du jour? He now has a show where people take dares to humiliate themselves or others for money. This from a man who has mysophobia and shaves his head because he thinks its cleaner. No one thought about doing a show on him? Really?

I remember a year or so ago that The Real Housewives of Uganda , Wyoming or wherever had apparently premiered and how Anderson Cooper had something to say about it… I really hope I heard that wrong… because if Anderson Cooper was seriously interested in the Real Housewives of any county, state, country or  municipality, the apocalypse is surely upon us.

As I continued to scan through the menu on tv I saw that my choices included: America’s Got Talent, Dr. Drew, Khloe and Lamar…yadda , yadda, yadda….and the list went on. I only paused when my contacts shifted and Hardcore Pawn looked like it read Hardcore Porn, for a second I panicked and I was about to call Direct TV to tell them no I don’t want any pay per view channels…when I realized that Reality TV had truly become the choice du jour. Who knew that such a misnomer would become America’s obsession?

I am wondering why… I mean really why do we care if Ernie the Wildman catches a big snake or that Kim Kardashian’s baby hasn’t debuted yet? You would think after being named after a navigation point she would have found her way on the cover of People by now. I have to ask, isn’t life, our own lives, real enough?

I spend 12 hours of each day working my ass off –running marketing campaigns, designing graphics, wondering if I remembered to pay the power bill, contemplating yoga classes, juggling free lance clients, chasing down rock star interviews, running Jackson’s Law, worrying about world peace and hoping that when I get home I may get a break from reality.

I don’t know about you, but reality is no walk in the park, picnic in the sun or stroll on the is more often than not just plain hard. Maybe there was some hidden delight in Snookie’s adventures on the Jersey Shore that I was missing but the last thing I want to escape to is an oompa loompa with a permanent bump it in her hair who is famous for being famous…

honey boo boo

honey boo boo

When I saw the next commercial pop up promoting the premier of Honey Boo Boo and the scratch and whiff accessory offered to the American public I turned off the tv and a reality that I just don’t understand. Seriously have we’ve gone so far down the rabbit hole that we find it interesting to view a spoiled child espouse her views on..well anything? It’s like watching Veruka Salt, but with an uncontrolled diet and subtitles because her ability to enunciate is clouded by her ability to fart.

I don’t know of one reality show that is out there that has any redeeming value…if we’re not watching people hoard toilet paper rolls we are glued to the screen to see 2nd rate actors and actress two step their way to twinkle toes freedom. Speaking of which apparently Lindsay Lohan is planning on her own reality show post rehab…what more could there be? Her appearances in court have been part of tv programming for years.

The bigger question is what is going on in society that we find these offerings so delectable and irresistible?

Does it make us feel better to see other people fail? Does it make us feel good to see people succeed even if it is only about weight loss or singing in tune? Are we focusing on anything and everything just so we won’t have to focus on our own realities? We become what we consume, so remember that the next time you decide to get real, using the term loosely as much of what we watch is scripted. It’s the Truman Show coming to fruition.

Beyonce gets pregnant and gives birth and you would think that Mary Magdelene had joined the cast of Glee. Last time I checked she wasn’t the only person with a uterus and I doubt she will be the last…still the media carried the story ad nauseum and like a band of lemmings we leapt off of the cliff in unison.

Future societies will one day unearth our artifacts and all they will find will be a tube of Skinnygirl Margarita mix, a microphone encrusted in diamonds and rubies and a pair of panties belonging to “NeNe” Leakes…it makes me sad.

Really sad.

Then again maybe I am selling myself too short?



I wonder if Bravo would be interested in following me around? I don’t have 8 kids, rock hard abs, a rich ex husband and I don’t live in the swamp and catch fish with my bare hands..but I have a super cute chihuahua, a 24 month old “puppy” who barks when she hears other dogs on tv, and my washer keeps knocking because the drum suddenly became crooked.

As I cast my view upon the horizon, that’s a hit series in the making..I just need to become a meth addict or start collecting pine needles to drive the ratings up. I’ll get a gay room mate, cook my dinners in the fireplace, and claim I see dead people in the reflection of my silverware….and no one will even remember that Beyonce successfully completed her EPT test or that Gordon Ramsey made someone cry over their bisque.

Who am I kidding? It will never happen. American Society has become interested in the lowest common denominator or the millionaires who live a life many of us can only imagine. I am neither and quite frankly hope I never achieve either one. Well to be honest I probably wouldn’t turn down a million dollars but I draw the line at tv crews filming how I spend it. One does have to have standards.

That’s ok, I’ll focus on my own reality and try not to worry about everyone else’s. I am sure it is boring, and a scratch and sniff/whiff card would only provide viewers with what it’s like when I constantly move my Glade plug in, how great Jon’s tacos smell and the scent of summer that pours over my deck balcony when I look up at the real stars in this universe.

I just hope that society wakes up from their Ice Loves Coco-coma and get’s real. Really real and turns away from this mass media mediocrity.

Until then, Bill Hicks was right…we are a virus with shoes.


About kimthore

Freelance journalist, writer, arts and entertainment guru.. I'm a reviewer, music critic, publicist, columnist, writer, marketer and artist.... In a weird combination I am also a Process Improvement Expert with 15 years experience in Six Sigma, CPI, ISO, I can tell a corporation how to work more efficiently with Dio playing on my IPod
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