This absolutely terrible reality tv premise makes for great entertainment

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/06/18/this-absolutely-terrible-reali.html

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There was a Swedish program with an opposite theme. One group in a hypermodern house and one in an old house. Then they faked that Sweden has been hit by a disaster, cut off all electricity, mobile phones etc and saw how the groups handled it. It had to be a lot of fake involved since no reasonable contestant would think the program would go on if there had been a real disaster, but it was amusing to see people trying to cope with a house where everything depended on electricity and IoT vs one with a wood stove.

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So people who have nothing can’t pull themselves up by their bootstraps and perform as well as people who have everything? It’s obvious that they aren’t trying hard enough - take away their pit toilet, that’ll motivate them.

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This kind of reality TV is precisely the kind that i find uncomfortable to watch. The drama is so manufactured for the sake of it that i can’t enjoy it on any level, same goes for most reality format competition shows. I prefer things that are more real like Antony Bourdain’s shows or Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, i get to learn about the world and cultures in a way that’s more personal. There have been a couple of reality competition shows i really enjoyed though, one was that took place in Alaska where regular people tried to traverse a large distance with limited supplies and another favorite that only had a single season was Last Man Standing where athletes and fit/sporty people traveled the world engaging in feats of strength/endurance or combat from various cultures.

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Of course, they’re not even living a Neanderthal lifestyle because living a paleolithic/neolithic lifestyle would require a lot of skills that modern people just don’t have. So everything is harder and worse than it would have been for the actual people of that era. As a competition, it’s really “people living a comfortable lifestyle” versus “people we’re torturing.” (Gee, who could foresee the outcome to that?)

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Do they have to suddenly switch lifestyles half way through? Because those first couple of episodes after the switch would be entertaining as hell. Like a societal whiplash.

The disadvantaged shockingly never are able to climb out of that hole.

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To be fair, 95% of people in this country who have nothing have a refrigerator, sooooooo /s as hell and f—- that bs.

I don’t usually like them, either, but found the first couple seasons of the Great British Baking show really watchable, if you’re into that kind of thing. The contestants are really kind and supportive of each other, and it kicked my own baking up a notch. The signature challenges are truly inspiring!

ETA: on the topic of reality tv, I was studying abroad in Austria in’03 or ‘04 and a fellow American was describing the then new reality show Millionaire Joe, and I totally thought he was punking me. No way I thought that could be a real thing.

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GBBO is definitely the one of the kindest, least dramatic competition reality shows. Making It with Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman has a similar vibe and I also recommend it.

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I have actually heard that the Great British Baking Show was well done though there were more recent changes people weren’t too thrilled about. That said i am a fan of some of the original hosts so at some point i know i’ll likely watch the show, i just haven’t gotten to it yet :slight_smile:

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That video has a long response from one of the contestants - Steve “The Crucified Newbie”.

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I am so jealous of her Totoro-sized stuffed porg

My guess is it will be back involving nationwide mandatory participation by mid-2021.

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I like to imagine she started out with a bunch more porg of equal size, but one got big enough to eat the others, and he’s almost done with the flock.

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Lnk plz?

Oh - it’s the pinned comment at the top.

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wow she is really entertaining. Didn’t know what to expect as i have no idea who she is, but her review just got better and better

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It’s no Kid Nation

Brilliant, especially this:

The only takeaway you can really have from this is that success is the result of pure aggression and dumb luck, which I guess that’s fine.

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