Here's what we like..Ya Dig?
By Matthew Burgoyne
From living in a house with seven strangers to eating some unimaginable animal part for $50,000, reality television has infiltrated the daily lives of millions of Americans – and I am not complaining.
Reality TV is “The Brady Bunch” of the 21st century. Families gather around nightly to tune in to their favorites, hoping for a healthy dose of mindless entertainment.
I am a fan of reality TV. I watch a majority of the programming – The Real World, Survivor, The Amazing Race, Flavor of Love, and the list could go on for quite a while. The only reality show I do not watch is The Bachelor because it does not involve a celebrity and the ending after the show is rarely a good one.
Reality TV gives me what I am looking for at the end of a busy day – an ironic escape from reality. For those 30 minutes (of if I am lucky, an hour), I do not have to live me life or my stresses. I get to watch and scrutinize the actions and decisions of people I have never met. It’s great.
So, what’s the appeal? Reality TV offers an escape for some people. I love to travel, but like a majority of the population, I can’t really afford to pick up and explore the world for months at a time. How do I deal with my unfortunate situation? I tune every week to The Amazing Race on CBS. Not only do I get to imagine myself traveling the world, but I get my fill of drama and excitement all from the comfort of my couch.
Reality TV lets the audience say and do things they would normally never say or do in real life. It allows them to live vicariously through reality TV “stars.”
Many people use it as a sounding board. After a busy day at work or school, reality TV can serve as a punching bag. When you r favorite player on Survivor is voted off, you do not have to take out your stress on your friends and family. You can take it out on the strangers on your TV screen.
The appeal of reality TV can be just as simple as people enjoy watching other people, especially when they are in compromising situations. Reality TV is like watching someone that you do not like trip over a rock and drop all of their books. You cannot help but enjoy what you are watching.
My favorite reality shows are the ones where you win money. Being poor myself, I enjoy watching other people complete near impossible tasks for the chance to win amounts of money that I could only dream off. It allows me to transfer my hopes and dreams of mega millions onto someone I do not know. I guess it makes it easier for me when I realize I do not have it.
Many consider reality TV to be a sad trend that will run its course. That could very well be true – all good things must come to an end. However, it is not going anywhere anytime soon. Until people stop turning on their TV’s to revel in the pains and triumphs of groups of random people, reality TV will love on. And I hope it does.