My Reality Umbrage

I finally identified my ongoing issue with reality tv. Or rather I can articulate a core annoyance.

My reality tv tends to be on the snooty end of the tv spectrum: genuine appointment television such as Dinner for Five, Iconoclasts, Inside the Actors Studio etc. I’m watching shows like that to learn; they’re windows into worlds I’m curious about.

(Dinner for Five occasionally surfaces on Netflix but Iconoclasts got swallowed up by the ether…no dvds, no YouTube…no proof of its existence except my altered thinking…like I’m Scrooge and I’d been visited by ghosts. Should this show ever reappear trust me it’ll be a Christmas miracle…and you though getting Wonder Years on Netflix was hard work).

The reality tv I despise with all the turned up nose disgust is the vox populi content…voting, trying to get married, or famous, or a record contract or all of those gifts at once. It’s hustling for self-worth. It’s a natural by-product of our harsh culture; it’s not out of line. I get it I just don’t dig it.

All of this naked contempt is compounded by the cut away is which is core annoyance.

I never enjoyed the cut away in stand up comedy specials…there might be legit reasons for including various shots of people laughing at jokes…might be! It don’t matter. I’m watching the comedy special solely to witness a comedian work…to see how he captures the stage, body language, nuances…the entire gamut.

Cutting away to people laughing is annoying and “doesn’t advance the plot.” It’s not like when I go to a comedy club I look around me at people laughing…my eyes stay on the performer.

That’s the real money shot!

And the bulk of reality tv has these obnoxious cut aways where contestants describe their feelings. And that’s my beef…I don’t find those cut away informative…they don’t add suspense or tension they’re bland. If anything it’s dumbing down the show. It’s tell not show…when show don’t tell is compelling storytelling.

Don’t tell me you’re scared or nervous or evil…I come from comic books: monologues, sharing your schemes these never work out; they often lead to ruin. Sharing ain’t caring.

I guess this is more of an observation than a beef; not like I’m gonna act on this (“sound of my tool!”)or release a diss track.


Also published on Medium.

Speak Your Mind

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Posts, blog and musings.
Events, gigs and appearances.


"Red Letter Nights"
by Sammy Younan is available!


Click here for to enjoy a yummy sample...