I have admitted before that I do like to watch some reality TV. I just finished up Expedition Africa last night and I loved it. While I don't think they were in quite as much peril as they would have liked us to believe since there were so many sky shots and it was clear there was a helicopter following them, it was still fun to watch and I do believe they had a difficult time. I have always wanted to go on an expedition and after seeing it, while I would be terrified I would still go.
I like shows like the Amazing Race and Survivor, but I like some that is a little less on par with those types of shows. I have to confess to watching the Bachelor/Bachelorette series. Maybe it goes back to the Dating Game from when I was a kid. Of course with the Dating Game they were only going to go on a date and they spent an afternoon getting to know each other. It's also fun to gab about it with my friend Pat. This series is supposed to help one person find true love by choosing out of numerous possible matches.
There are a lot of this type of show on TV and I have to be honest, I don't get it. It's fun to watch the fairytale dates and the drama, but to take something like this seriously is a bit hard. It entails one person choosing about 15 people of the opposite sex to get to know and find "the one." The contestants are usually young and of an above average attractiveness. So I find myself wondering...after you weed through the ones who just want to be on TV to get to the ones who are there for the genuine possibility of finding love...what's wrong with them? Why can't they find love the way the rest of us do out in the real world?
It seems to me that most of them must have some serious type of personality defect that keeps them from finding someone just by going out into public, and believing they could find love with a fickle stranger that wants to have their cake and eat it too on TV. First of all you have to be a certain type of person just to subject yourself to the humiliation of being chosen from the herd like cattle at an auction. You also have to be the type of person who can deal with group dating on a large scale. The person doing the choosing always has the same conflicts, they can never decide which person they want, they don't know at the very end what the right thing to do is, they have never had a tougher time, blah blah blah. (And they say this stuff isn't scripted.) Not only is it scripted, they don't bother to change the script from season to season. It's also pretty obvious that unless the person seeking love is completely blind that the less savory choices are kept on much longer than they should be for ratings as in the case of creepy Wes. I don't care if that guy's records go quadruple platinum I would never buy one.
With the exception of Trista and Ryan every couple has broken up as far as I know. They tend to check back in on them during future seasons. They always seem so surprised that they didn't stay together. I don't see how you could. They create these magical and unrealistic settings for dates and then they expect them to be able to create a life together in the real world. The real world is harsh and relationships are a lot of work. On these shows the work is done for them. No one has to plan anything, they just have to show up.
In the end one person always leaves utterly heartbroken. Actually I think sometimes the heartbreak is really just humiliation, but they knew that was a chance going in.
A couple times I have found myself rooting for one person or another, but after it's over I forget their names. It's meaningless entertainment for me as a viewer and background noise while I work. For the contestants, I can't imagine what it is. But I do know this much, it's not reality.