Argue the Worthiness of Reality Television Shows or the Unworthiness of them Introduction
Reality television shows has become a big trend in our society today. We can probably turn on the TV at any time of day and be able to see a reality TV show. The market has exploded, and they are almost taking over TV. People can become famous for almost anything and a lot of people seem to think that being in a reality TV show is the biggest thing that can happen in life. What is it about shows in which they take normal people and put them on TV and expose every aspect of their lives? They are popular because of their unscripted performance; personal, emotional, and physical characteristics of people’s lives are broadcasted for millions of people to watch. With the rise of reality TV shows, many people have a problem distinguishing between reality and fictional fantasy. Medias are influential factors on what we base our own appearance on. This study will focus on an argument in relation to the worthiness of Reality Television shows or the unworthiness of them. I believe that reality TV shows can be a negative influence that might harm people both mentally and physically. In addition, reality TV shows make people have unrealistically extraordinary ideals that are different from the real.
Firstly, reality TV shows might inflict mental harm to an individual. The reality television series, Are You Hot? The Search for America's Sexiest People on ABC is a shallow and dangerous TV show. The whole idea of this eye-candy-fest is to find the two newest sex symbols in America, with the only criteria being how hot they look. From four different regions of the country called hot-zones, every narcissist in America gathers together to be evaluated in front of three judges on their body, face and sex appeal. One judge even uses a laser pointer to draw attention to any imperfection on a contestants' body. I feel that Are You Hot is mentally destructive to young women. I was sitting at home subconsciously measuring myself up to these wanna-be models and I realized that I did not like the way I was feeling; this can't be healthy. Seeing the judges put down people who are already close to perfect really made me question myself. It leads us to obsess over our appearance. Standing up on a stage in front of millions of viewers and being told "You are not hot enough," this kind of rejection is many people's greatest fear. It damages one's self confidence and self worth and it should not, because appearance is just a small fraction that makes up a person. The show's views are also victims of rejection because they subconsciously compare their own bodies to the ones on TV. Are You Hot completely alters young women's conceptions of what is normal; creating a false image of what they should look like. It is hard enough growing into a young adult, trying to figure out who she is and feel comfortable with her body without having to worry about conforming to the American stereotype of a young woman.
Reality TV shows are not only mentally harmful but also physically harmful. Are You Hot encourages young women to become fixated on their looks, which is damaging to an individual; it is physically destructive. It is sad to see the oversized-egos of contestants on the show strutting around with a "tell me I'm beautiful" look in their faces while probably starving inside. The beautiful women we see on TV are what many American girls view as ideal and therefore aspire to look like. Obsessing over appearance can be physically damaging to a young women's health because it can lead to trying to change the way her body looks. There are many dangerous things one can do in an attempt to change their own body to look more like the stereotype hot bodies seen on Are You Hot. One way is to have breast augmentation surgery. This surgery carries many complications and far too many risks to list. They range anywhere from capsular-contracture or deflation to nerve damage or calcium deposit lumps which are often mistaken for cancer and lead to additional surgery to remove the implant and distinguish the deposits from cancer. My friend Chelsea had to have her implants removed; she experienced puckering, wrinkling, sagging and other changes of the breast. Not only this, implants may also affect one’s ability to produce milk for breast-feeding.
I do not even want to imagine what the thousands of rejects are going to do to themselves now that they have been told they are not hot enough. It is bad enough that insecure viewers at home see these beautiful women getting told their legs are too voluptuous. There is far more to a human being than what meets the eye. True beauty lies within and should not be obtained through means of surgery and eating disorders. If a person is well educated―attractive or not―they can do just fine in obtaining success, wealth and power.
Not only this, the reality TV shows deadened people’s perception of reality. A problem with some shows is that they are too idealistic. Many people in the shows are much better-off than the average audience. In the reality TV show Newlyweds on MTV, Jessica Simpson does not know how to cook, clean, or do the laundry in the marriage. Her husband Nick Lachey does all these for her. Also when rare arguments occur between them, Nick is usually the one to make it up to his beloved wife. This on one hand might cause young females to expect too much out of marriage and cause later disappointments. However, the show does not portray the average marriage. Having their reputation, an essential element for acquiring fans, on TV, the couple acts as better people and portrays a better marriage. Furthermore, the couple is extremely wealthy compared to the average audience member.
Reality TV shows with the money and opulent lifestyle of the celebrities has long been a fixture on TV. Some people on reality shows are extremely wealthy. Generations of TV viewers have grown up knowing more than they ever wanted to about how the other half lives. Most of the audience members are not as rich as the popular celebrities who can exclude the most common conflict in financial problems. They do not argue about money and they are convincingly less threatened by this important matter. There is an episode in the reality show Newlyweds, a couple was arguing because the wife―Jessica Simpson―thought that the husband―Nick Lachey―did not help clean the house often. He decided to hire a house cleaner and the problem was solved right away. With such simple motives behind conflicts, most problems are resolved with relative ease. The issue comes with the shows was once simply eye-roll inducing has become irrelevant and irritating.
Reality TV shows like WE’s Platinum Weddings, MTV’s My Super Sweet 16 and Cribs are appalling; it is like audience is watching the rich people throw away their money. In the reality TV show Platinum Weddings, the bride and groom come secondary to the opulence of the occasion itself. What am I supposed to think about the rich couple’s half million dollar wedding or with their diamond-studded cake? I could find a better use for some of those funds, like giving money to charity or finding a better use for more money than many will see in two decades of work than spending it on a single extravaganza. At least those people are of age; the stars of MTV’s My Super Sweet 16 just have rich parents to pay for everything. MTV has also given us Cribs, but how many people outside of their small social circles relate to the highbrow party circuit in New York, New Jersey, Atlanta or Orange County? I think I have seen enough of the rich people and their problems that only they can relate to them.
Reality TV shows can be beneficial. It is a good source of entertainment. People are drawn to these shows to escape everyday stresses. It has become so popular because it plays off of people's emotions and imagination. People love to imagine that they are on the show or someday they might have the chance to be on the show. Many reality shows also offer a large amount of money to the winner. Viewers and contestants are both interested in easy money. It is interesting to see what people will actually do to win. On shows such as Fear Factor contestants eat pig intestines, free fall from twelve story buildings with only a quarter-inch cable to stop their bodies from hitting the concrete pavement below and do other dangerous and disgusting stunts. People watch them because of the shear intensity that they feel when someone is doing something that they are truly scared of. It gets people excited to see others compete and do scary things like having to swim with alligators or eat maggots; it gets people adrenaline flowing.
The primary basis for many of these reality TV shows―but not all―seems to be to put people in painful, embarrassing, and humiliating situations for the rest of us to watch―and presumably, laugh at and be entertained. Many people feel that reality TV show is the best production to come from ABC, MTV and all the corporate conglomerates trying to make easy money. That is exactly what they are doing; selling easily produced television to easily minded recipients. Although reality TV shows are very entertaining, people need to know that they can be a negative influence because reality TV shows can make people vain and materialistic.
In the world of reality TV shows, it is acceptable to show off, manipulate and be extravagant. If they do it in a good way it can even be something that is positive and fun. Is this really how our reality is today? This reality TV trend makes a big impact on our lives. It can make regular men and women instant celebrities who probably would've lived a normal anonymous life if they had not made the cut. However, reality TV shows can be a bad influence and harm people both mentally and physically. Also, reality TV shows make people have unrealistic ideals which are far from the reality. We should remember that there is always a gap between reality and ideals. We all have lofty ideals but the reality is quite different. Keeping up with trends and ideals may be fun, but in reality, it does more harm than just to our wallet.