Saturday, April 30, 2005

"Reality" TV

Since "Angel" and "Buffy" went off the air, I haven't been watching much television. However, a couple weeks ago, I had the opportunity to watch a number of the reality TV shows. Herewith, my observations:

American Idol: Some of the singing was good; most was just passable (these are the finalists?) and the attempts to build up suspense were tedious. I can't help thinking that the show would be enormously better if they ditched all three of those annoying panelists and brought back Ed McMahon and the "spokesmodel" category.

The Apprentice: I only caught the last half of this, with its trademark "You're fired!" delivered from behind this enormous conference table in a darkened chamber. This had something to do with putting together an ad campaign for Buick. Or maybe Pontiac. Again, the attempt to build up suspense was tedious. I'm also a little confused -- didn't Trump make his fortune in casinos and real estate? What does he know about automobiles?

Simple Life: I think that's its name; the one with the descendant of hotelier Conrad Hilton in it. Boy, is he rolling in his grave. Absolutely unspeakable.

The Amazing Race: Probably the only one of the above lot I'd not get up off the couch to change the channel for if, heaven forbid, it happened to be on. Visually interesting in a travelogue kind of way.

MTV's Real World/Road Rules gladiator-type whatever: A lot like Battle of the Network Stars, only instead of, well, network stars, these twenty-something folks apparently used to be on either Real World or Road Rules. Also, they all live together and wear a lot of lycra.

Extreme Makeover - Home Edition: Probably the only one that doesn't have a tawdry or mean-spirited premise. They re-build a house for some deserving family. In one week. The host really needs to cut back on the caffeine, though.

Iron Chef America: Not bad, but lacking much of the charm of the original.

The Bachelor: The unspeakable in pursuit of...well, never mind.

Supernanny: You can discipline your child, but only if someone with an English accent tells you it's okay.

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