Thursday, March 3, 2011

What a Difference a Decade Makes

When the reality TV craze started making a splash over ten years ago, I was one of those that thought it was the end of the world as we know it. Even though I can admit to watching The Real World-NY when it aired back in 1992 the boom at the end of that decade and starting the following made everyone believe that our evening viewing options were going to the dogs. (And I’ll say – some of them literally were really painful to watch.) But what grew out of necessity to have something air during a writer’s strike has grown into a full-fledged market that takes a huge chunk out of nightly programming. I recently stopped to think about what I actually watch on television and I must say – reality TV makes up a huge portion of what I find enjoyable. From Amazing Race to Survivor and American Idol to Top Chef, Project Runway and RuPaul’s Drag Race – I find the competition shows really pull me in. I think the reasoning is the fact that you can miss a week and not lose a storyline. There are ‘characters’ to root for and others to despise. You feel you get to know the people and then they move on from your life without you having to invest too much time. And yes, they can even be entertaining. So as much as this writer loves a greatly written story/series/show – there are times that even I want mindless entertainment. I guess we’re never too old to be able to admit we were wrong.

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