Reality TV shows - fan or not?

Discussion in 'THE AIGBURTH ARMS' started by jmc2000, Sep 10, 2017.

  1. jmc2000

    jmc2000 Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    These get a bad press - especially the ones that seem to depend on the possibility of people having sex to attract viewers. What happened to Big Brother is quite sad in that regard. It used to be quite diverting. To begin with, they got a random cross-section of normal people. Then it was interesting to see how fame-seekers and "quirky characters" were drawn to the show, because of all the attention given to the original contestants. Now it's just a bunch of beautiful (by mainstream standards) young adults in a house.

    Celeb Big Brother
    is still semi-interesting, because the constraint of finding famous-ish people - who'll actually do it - means you end up with more assorted personalities. It's just a shame so many of them are awful.

    I've also had my fill of talent shows, since the staging and pacing are so contrived and cringe-worthy.

    Despite that, I do actually love some reality formats. Come Dine With Me and Four in a Bed are two shows I find really easy to watch. I'm always happy to veg out in front of a weekend omnibus of either. Coach Trip was another one I quite liked. And I feel pretty relaxed if I'm watching something - anything - where someone either cooks a meal or buys, builds or renovates a house. I think these less dramatic formats fill the "easy TV" gap that soaps used to fill (and still do, for some people). They're effectively real life soap operas.

    I would probably count Come Dine With Me as one of my favourite TV shows. Top five, certainly. Do you like reality TV? If not, why not?
     
  2. neilold

    neilold Flight Co-Ordinator

    Messages:
    5,745
    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
    above you all in cheshire
    Reality shows are one of the worst things to ever happen to tv. Along with property buying shows and cooking shows. they're tedious, full of douches, ridiculously sensationalist. Encourage stupidity. Dumb society down, and encourage lazy and cheap programming.t hey make stars out of people with essentially no talent; they're repetitive, boring, predictable, vacuous, inane, and don't even deserve the name reality, since they're edited to a ridiculous degree, and even if they're not, I have never witnessed the kind of reality they're supposed to be representing.

    In case I didn't mention it, no, I don't like them
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2017
    Ant E likes this.
  3. jmc2000

    jmc2000 Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    Explain!!
     
  4. neilold

    neilold Flight Co-Ordinator

    Messages:
    5,745
    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
    above you all in cheshire
    I just did
     
  5. FeeBee

    FeeBee Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,862
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Location:
    Australia
    I liked early Big Brother and Survivour. Amazing Race I still enojoy in small doses.

    I guess Ice Road Truckers counts as reality tv in some extent. I like it and I like the reality shows about fining gold, oil, rocks etc. The ones I like the most are Canadian.
     
  6. Deep_Space_in_the_15th_Century

    Deep_Space_in_the_15th_Century Supply Officer

    Messages:
    936
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2016
    Location:
    Deep Space in the 15th Century
    I have a particular disdain for house shows. They're never ordinary people, they're always rich couples. I've never seen Location Location Location try to find a single person a cheap flat to rent. And I just don't understand the appeal as I don't find houses interesting. As long as the roof doesn't leak I'm not that fussed. Escape to the Country is probably the one I'd watch because they explore the area and teach you something about the local culture and history. If there were one or two I wouldn't mind, but we seem to be inundated with them. Selling houses, buying houses, renovating houses. I don't get it. Sometimes there's a house show on damn near every channel.

    I did watch a show called the Curse of Oak Island about people investigating the Oak Island Money Pit in Nova Scotia, but that got absurdly contrived because they weren't going to find the treasure in episode three, were they. Significant developments were only ever going to happen in the finales, and even then if they had found the treasure it'd be in the news. So you're watching a show about a treasure hunt, but you know there are more episodes, and there hasn't been world headlines about them finding it, so you know they don't find it.

    It's like River Monsters with Jeremy Wade. I like that, but again it's contrived because you know he's not going to find the fish he's after until the last ten minutes. Every episode features him catching the wrong fish at first, then he'll say something like "I'm just not sure if this fish could be responsible for these attacks, I can't help but feeling there's still a monster out there", and then you glance at the clock and know he's right because there's still ten minutes left.

    I like Salvage Hunters, where the bloke drives around the UK buying old furniture and industrial equipment, again because you go to different places and learn a bit of local history. Did Time Team count as a reality tv? I like that. I don't like cooking shows. There's an American show called Auction Kings about a guy who runs an auction house which is okay, again I think it's because items come in and you learn what they are. It's a bit like Time Team in that sense.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2017
  7. Nikki the Great

    Nikki the Great Console Officer

    Messages:
    3,047
    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    No. It's mostly just trash tv.
     
  8. jmc2000

    jmc2000 Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    I think part of the fascination with "property porn" is seeing nicer houses than you could own yourself, and thinking, "wouldn't it be nice to have a house like that one day." The key is for the house to be a lot better than what you have, but not so outrageous that you can't enjoy a plausible daydream about it (e.g., not something silly like the Sultan of Brunei's palace).

    If you're watching a cookery show, you don't want people to make/eat the kind of food you can do yourself. You want to sit there thinking, "Oh, that looks delicious. I should learn to cook. Maybe I'll cook something like that one day." Equally, the property porn shows have you thinking, "Oh, that looks lovely. I should start a successful business. Maybe I'll have a house like that one day."

    I think a show about trying to rent a cheap flat would be really interesting, but not the same kind of pleasantly grounded escapism.

    One I forgot to mention: Antiques Roadshow. Is that reality TV? I love it, anyway.
     
  9. FeeBee

    FeeBee Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,862
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Location:
    Australia
    That reminds me that I don't mind Jeremy Wade, I watch it when I'm at my friends since her kids love it. It's hard to tell certain episodes appart because some of them are so similar. I keep hoping that there is an episode for when he found a shipwrecked person last year on one of the Australian islands. They showed a little in the news but hoping there is more than the small snippit in the news.

    I enjoy Antiques Roadshow if it is the only thing that is on. Is Grand Designs a reality show? It is my favourite house show. Wish I had the money that most the people on that show has.
     
  10. Deep_Space_in_the_15th_Century

    Deep_Space_in_the_15th_Century Supply Officer

    Messages:
    936
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2016
    Location:
    Deep Space in the 15th Century
    I just think we've got this weird division between so-called reality tv and actual reality. The houses aren't "real" houses and the meals aren't "real" meals. Sure they're literally real, but there's something very weird to me about families sitting in 1970s estates watching couples buy Elizabethan townhouses.

    Maybe I'm getting a bit class struggle here, but I see this all over "reality" TV. For example, there's that show "Can't Pay? We'll Take it Away", which is from the point of view of a repo-man/debt-collector. Okay, people need to pay their debts, but do you not think making it a reality tv programme is a bit weird and insensitive? There's a lot of people out there struggling financially, and we've got this programme vilifying them. What's entertaining about someone falling behind on their bills? And there seems to be far more programmes about bad tenants than bad landlords.

    I adore Antiques Roadshow. I don't like these Storage Locker shows though because the people are obnoxious and they're too contrived. Why don't the "extras" ever win a locker? I mean, they're real bidders, right? But they hardly ever bid and never win. I have serious doubts about how "real" they are. And these people discover items and take it to someone who knows about them, but all they care about is what it's worth financially. Some Antiques Roadshow people might be the same, but they're more polite about it, and often they just wanted a history lesson and weren't going to sell it, whereas the American Storage people will sometimes interrupt and just say "enough history, what's it worth?".
     
  11. neilold

    neilold Flight Co-Ordinator

    Messages:
    5,745
    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
    above you all in cheshire
    the thing that shows reality shows up is that most of the fans of them aren't really fans of the reality format at all, they're actually interested in the specific subject it's targetting itself, a lot more than the waffle that goes with it.
     
  12. FeeBee

    FeeBee Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,862
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Location:
    Australia
    I did like one of the storage shows that I watched but I cannot remember the name of it but it was only following two men who worked together not a whole bunch of people and they didn't always win the lockers that they wanted. Its more of a curiousity with me of what people keep in storage lockers. I like old things.

    This is on youtube but to me it counts as reality TV, I like watching the people that explore so called abandoned houses. Something I have always wanted to do, but only ever got to do it with my grandparents old farm house before it was demolished and a couple of farm shed on properties of people I knew and a few buildings at work at were no longer in use. I also get a little uneasy watching them because I know they are doing something illegal.
     
  13. Deep_Space_in_the_15th_Century

    Deep_Space_in_the_15th_Century Supply Officer

    Messages:
    936
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2016
    Location:
    Deep Space in the 15th Century
    Is that the one with the two Americans, one is fat and bald and tattooed? That's one of the ones I was talking about. I'm suspicious because they always find a cash buyer. These people just happen to have the correct amount of cash on them, and yet according to what we see on camera, the price was decided in person.

    Like, the two storage guys say 5000. Buyer says 2000. They haggle. They see if it works. They contrive some sort of duel using the item where if the buyer wins it's 3000 but if the sellers win its 4000. The sellers win and the buyers hands over 4000 cash. If they only intended to pay 2000 then why did they have 4000 cash. And why didn't they have to count it out from a larger amount, why is the exact amount ready. It's almost like the sale is actually pre-arranged and the haggling staged for the camera!
     
  14. FeeBee

    FeeBee Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,862
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Location:
    Australia
    I can't remember if they were American or Canadian. I think they were tall and thin, but been a while since I last saw the show.

    I have seen the one you are talking about. Texas Storage Wars is the one that I end up watching the most because I like it when people lose money. Usually the two woman who own an antique store.

    One of the house shows my parents watch, also Texas based, I can't remember the name of it but it follows a few people that buy removable houses. Move them to a lot with other removable houses. Refurbish them and resell them to be moved again. That one I find weird to watch because so much of what they do is illegal here or would need to be redone when moved. All electrictiy and the roofs have to be redone in removal houses here and yet they complain when they discover they have to redo the roof and the electricty in the crappy house they brought.
     
  15. jmc2000

    jmc2000 Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    I think there's a point here. For me the property shows and Antiques Roadshow are in the same sort of bracket. I don't have the funds ready for a fancy new home, but I'm interested in architecture and interior design, so am happy to watch a show about couples who do. Equally, I don't have the funds ready for an obscure but charming piece of 18th Century oak furniture, but I'm interested in domestic history, so am happy to watch a show about people who do. Antiques Roadshow features a lot of affluent people too :-)

    Edit:
    If Time Team were exactly the same show, but had the extra dimension that, at the start of every episode, Tony Robinson introduced an affluent couple who wanted to fund an architectural dig for their own entertainment - it would still be an interesting show, I think?

    In these cases, I sometimes roll my eyes at the "staginess" of it - and feel like I'm seeing the same set pieces over and over again, or chafe at some of the personalities - but still enjoy the shows. They're solidly dependable ways for me to see things I'm mildly interested in.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017

Share This Page