Every time you turn on the television you are bound to see a reality show. Whether it is Big Brother, Jersey Shore or any other we can’t seem to be completely indifferent to it. We either love or hate this kind of thing. But what exactly makes us watch them in the first place?
The idea of a TV reality shows dates as far back as 1946 and a game show called “Cash and Carry”, which sometimes requested from participants to perform various stunts. One of the most popular reality shows ever (well, perhaps not to those who were in it) was Candid Camera and it became popular all over the world (it can be seen in many countries even today, the Italian is especially notorious). The idea of a reality show is even older than this, but lets not get too far behind and stick with TV.
The biggest the competition in a reality show, the bigger its ratings will be. This is why reality shows such as Big Brother, Survivor and Big Boss are so popular. Even though we often see the lowest in people, we seem to love when two participants start calling each other names because someone ate the last piece of pizza. We also enjoy watching as they backstab each other, form alliances or do anything else just to win this competition and the prize it holds. I guess it is a lot better to watch a couple of strangers feuding over something, then think about your own problems. This way, we can forget about them at least for an hour or two.
Reality shows do, of course, have a good side as well. It’s not all about calling names, backstabbing and dirty blows. This is a chance for the ordinary participant to become famous at least during the show is aired. People today are often tired of seeing the same movie or music stars and want to see an average Joe instead of Madonna or Justin Bieber. This is why they will sit at home, cheer them and maybe even vote for them via phone or Internet if required. As a result, the said person will achieve his or her star status at least for that year (although they are largely forgotten pretty much soon after).
Of course, those that ultimately profit the most, besides the television who increased their ratings and the winner, who become a star for some time are the brands who got another way to advertise themselves.
I’m not a really big fan of reality television shows myself as I seldom watch them and never vote, but even I can see that they are here to stay. The producers will always have a new idea coming up, whether it is a show about building houses or a show about making cakes, millions, nay, billions of people watch them every day. I hope that of that number, at least some now understand why are we watching them so much.
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