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O Big Brother, Why For Art Thou?

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  • O Big Brother, Why For Art Thou?

    I am currently in exile from my television, waiting for the news to come on (honest!), but earlier I had the misfortune to catch the warm-up to this year's series of Big Brother (UK) and it made me want to resign my position as a sentient being.

    I'm not a cultural snob by any means (in this forum alone I've admitted to liking the Powerpuff Girls and the B52s) and I'd probably like to be famous as much as the next insecure, attention-seeker... but what is it that drives these people to humiliate themselves on national television for nothing more than a chance at an audition for the show? It reminds me of the William S. Burroughs story Spare Ass Annie in which freaks are placed upon the highest hill in the land to display their inadequacies to God, so that he wouldn't think the human race was getting above itself.

    I'm not going to rant against the show, because I do have an "off" button on my TV... I do not, however, have an "off" button on my mother, who will now gossip about the housemates for the next few months as if I have the faintest clue what she's talking about... and then she'll complain about how it isn't good as it was last year, but she'll keep watching it anyway!!

    Grrrr!

    Sorry.

    D...
    "That which does not kill us, makes us stranger." - Trevor Goodchild

  • #2
    I've watched The Powerpuff Girls a few times; it's a funny show!

    What drives these gomers? Dunno, probably the same thing that makes people go on Jerry Springer, et al: just to get that 15 minutes of fame.

    "Did ya see me on TV?" "Yeah, you looked like an idiot!" "Yeah, but I was ON TV!"

    I don't watch them either. It's just the latest fad, like all the daytime talk (freak)shows of just a couple of years ago.

    I've got my Futurama and Godzilla DVDs, and my books, and The History Channel to keep me entertained!
    Madness is always the best armor against Reality

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    • #3
      I'm going to defend "BB" .................... nope, can't do it.
      \"Killing me won\'t bring back your apples!\"

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      • #4
        Some of those reality shows are so stupid. There are a few I can't even watch.

        But as far as cartoons go, I have three kids so its Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network 24/7.

        I like:

        -SpongeBob Squarepants
        -Dexter's Laboratory
        -Invader Zim (when they show it)
        When they had advanced together to meet on common
        ground, then there was the clash of shields, of spears
        and the fury of men cased in bronze; bossed shields met
        each other and the din rose loud. Then there were
        mingled the groaning and the crowing of men killed and
        killing, and the ground ran with blood.

        Homer, The Illiad

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        • #5
          BB is bad

          Gotta admit I find that so called 'reality' TV stuff totally dull, and not a little insidious. It's all a complete mis-nomer as it's actually disracting people from reality, in a very brain numbing way. I can only speak of the little I've seen of the one's here in England. The latest here uses the concept of a house that is specifically designed to be uncomfortable and cause conflict between the contestants.

          And also it has the unsavoury aspect of using voyeurism and public humiliation in the name of entertainment. The whole thing to me just smaks of using humans as lab rats on live TV. Dehumanising for both the contestants and the observers.

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          • #6
            The main thing is: what makes these shows seem so "real"?

            The setup is usually completely fake - "Real World" with the completely contrived set of implausible roommates (like gays and homophobes under the same roof). Many of the rules make no sense whatever - as when on "The Swan" they disallowed the use of mirrors for women that had just undergone radical plastic surgeries. And to my mind, these shows are probably partly scripted - or at the very least craftily edited - as when "Survivor" contestants vote each other off the island, usually played up for the most dramatic outcome possible. The Same thing happens on "The Bachelor" when the man hands out roses.

            But then you have to stop and think that people are obviously stupid enough to vote utter shite assholes like Arnold Shwartznegger, Junior, and Tony Blair into office, right? So what makes any of us think that these same gullible fools will not also appreciate the silliest of diversions?

            This is Rome, TV is the arena. Bread and circuses, people.

            Keep them hypnotized while you loot them. The mugger as Mesmer.

            --------------------------------------

            is zakt's line of dots totally screwing the formatting of this page? I would think there would be a way to force a line break...

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            • #7
              Originally posted by krunky
              The setup is usually completely fake - "Real World" with the completely contrived set of implausible roommates (like gays and homophobes under the same roof).
              That's exactly what happened with the new BB UK. I was watching the first few "housemates" arrive out of morbid curiosity. The first was a gay man who disapproved of "asylum seekers", the second was an ex-asylum-seeker who disapproved of gays. I turned off immediately. Oh, and there's a big window in the toilet so everyone else can watch them peeing away all the wine they'll be drinking every night! Gah! :(

              Originally posted by krunky
              But then you have to stop and think that people are obviously stupid enough to vote utter shite assholes like Arnold Shwartznegger, Junior, and Tony Blair into office, right? So what makes any of us think that these same gullible fools will not also appreciate the silliest of diversions?
              [ahem] I was one of the "gullible fools" who voted Blair in the first time, but we were trying to get rid of the Tories! I swear!! I voted for Labour, not New Labour. They tricked me!!!

              Originally posted by krunky
              is zakt's line of dots totally screwing the formatting of this page? I would think there would be a way to force a line break...
              It is strange, isn't it? I bred a weak thread.

              D...
              "That which does not kill us, makes us stranger." - Trevor Goodchild

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              • #8
                Krunky wrote:
                is zakt's line of dots totally screwing the formatting of this page? I would think there would be a way to force a line break...
                :oops: Soz, guys, took them out now. Won't happen again........ no stop it .....

                I have now kept the missus company while she watched 2 nights of BB. :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops: I cannot comment on it further. :?
                \"Killing me won\'t bring back your apples!\"

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by zakt
                  Soz, guys, took them out now. Won't happen again........ no stop it .....
                  Ah, that's better. There's no little wheel on my mouse for sideways scrolling! I was having to move my entire hand! Such an inconvenience!!!

                  Originally posted by zakt
                  I have now kept the missus company while she watched 2 nights of BB.
                  If it's a social thing, you're allowed a little slack. Besides, I've just spent the last few hours chuckling my way through Clueless, so I'm really not in a good place to be judging others. :oops:

                  But still I resist the BB!!!

                  D...
                  "That which does not kill us, makes us stranger." - Trevor Goodchild

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                  • #10
                    I'm escaping to America soon for a few months, that way I'l avoid the Big Brother hype.

                    I never thought I'd be grateful for America. :P

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                    • #11
                      Re: BB is bad

                      Originally posted by Grey Mouser
                      And also it has the unsavoury aspect of using voyeurism and public humiliation in the name of entertainment. The whole thing to me just smaks of using humans as lab rats on live TV. Dehumanising for both the contestants and the observers.
                      True, but, if the people wouldn't volunteer for this, they wouldn't be humiliated.

                      I've got my Hawkwind CDs and my Monty Python's Flying Circus DVDs to keep me entertained.




                      <<Lemon curry??>>
                      Madness is always the best armor against Reality

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                      • #12
                        What - no Black Adder?

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                        • #13
                          "But then you have to stop and think that people are obviously stupid enough to vote utter shite assholes like Arnold Shwartznegger, Junior, and Tony Blair into office, right? So what makes any of us think that these same gullible fools will not also appreciate the silliest of diversions?"

                          Ah, yes, becuase there is never ANY disconnect between entertainment and politics and economics and... God forbid if someone was actually able to compartmentalize (real world terms: walk and chew gum at the same time).

                          While I think that people are much more willing to "settle" in terms of their lives, EVERY SINGLE ASPECT of every single life has to have a political implication.

                          Personally? As a rule, I don't watch reality TV, since I know enough about the genre to know that it is not real and it is not unscripted. I just don't have the time for something like that. Having said that, I know some very intelligent, well-informed, politically engaged people who wouldn't miss some of this stuff for the very reason that it IS mindless, it is something that is so simple it doesn't have to be thought about.

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                          • #14
                            I think there is a real (no pun intended) difference between reality TV and unscripted TV. Neither seem very real to me.

                            I'll admit to liking the original Real World on MTV and the first season of Survivor (when it seemed fresh). Now there's a formula to all of these shows, which takes a lot of the fun out of them. Oh, wait! There's a twist! Gee I didn't see that coming.

                            I guess these shows are like everything else on television. Some of them are good, some of them are beyond mind-numbing. Having said that, I'll admit to wasting 55 minutes of my life watching a part of a horrible show called "The One that got Away" last night. While I'll freely admit that, I'll also blame my wife for most of it. :) I have to make television watching compromises, because college football season is right aroung the corner. :lol:

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                            • #15
                              I like watching MTV Real World. and even more so, The Real World vs. Road Rules Challenges = mtv people vs. road rules people in sports/ humiliation (just like Fear Factor) challenges. I am amused by the ridiculously high amount of drama and conflict. The heart of fiction is conflict. Can't get any better conflict in these human Guinea pig shows. Like what Krunky wrote, they put obviously non-compatible people together ie. homophobe with homosexual. This latest season, angry alternative chick (with Cystic Fibrosis) with fraternity/ jock types. Why the hell the chick would want to be on the show to begin with is beyond me !!!
                              I also find Pimp my Ride amusing.
                              Nevertheless I think most of their programming is garbage and will continue to bash MTV in my writing. If I'm hypocritical because I watch some of their programming, so be it! TV is evil.
                              \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
                              Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview

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