Thursday, July 7, 2011

Summer = gluttonous IQ lowering reality TV watching

Well, it's that time of year again... summer. Which is synonymous with watching really bad (meaning really good) reality TV. 'Cause there ain't much on during the summer months. Except for True Blood (shiver of delight) and Weeds (which we don't get on our On Demand service which makes me crazy 'cause then we have to wait for the DVD to come out 'cause we don't like to watch it once it hits Canadian TV 'cause of all the freakin' commercials... but I digress.)

So, to fill in those prime time TV watching hours, my boyfriend, stepdaughter and I latch on to such distinctive fare as The Bachelorette, which will be followed by Bachelor Pad, Toddlers and Tiaras (it's child abuse, but we can't look away. Why, I ask, why?), Love in the Wild (a hybrid of Survivor and Bachelor/Bachelorette), Pregnant in Heels (about a "pregnancy concierge" servicing Manhattan's upper crust knocked up ladies, Say Yes to the Dress and Say Yes to the Dress - Big Bliss (Big Bliss = fat girls).

I know, you're amazed at the sheer quality of programming in which we indulge. So are we. We learn so much from these shows. For example, on The Bachelorette, we've learned that Ashley's instincts are total shit and she shouldn't listen to them. She immediately fell for this douchebag named Bentley. (Who names their kid after luggage?) 

That Ashley couldn't see past Bentley's smooth-talkin' bullshit was alarming. He even left the show voluntarily because he wasn't attracted to Ashley and had no interest in pursuing her. Of course, when he told her he was leaving, he lied about his true motives and said he needed to be with his daughter, but whatever, we were just happy to see him go.

Except it didn't end there. Ashley just couldn't let go of the possibility of hooking up with Bentley at some point because he had left things kind of "open" and it was tainting all her dates with the remaining guys, who are all pretty great, as far as we know. So, they brought Bentley back so Ashley could confront him once and for all. He still couldn't be honest with her but at least this time she gave him the boot. Hopefully, she'll stay on the straight and narrow and finally give the other guys a chance.

I've already expressed my views on Toddlers and Tiaras here. Nothing has changed. Except that I can't stop myself from watching this show, and that scares me.

Love in the Wild is just plain funny because it puts men and women who've just met in these crazy, jungle adventure situations where their patience and good humour is put to the test.  Following the day's wilderness exploits, each new couple has to spend the night together in a cabin. Bow-chicka-bow-bow.

Then, at elimination, the couple who won the jungle challenge is safe. They can choose to stay together or pick another partner. If they choose someone else, that person can't refuse. The other couples who came in second and beyond have the same choice, except they can be refused if they choose to switch partners, and if they are, must go to the "unmatched" area and hope someone else picks them. The last two remaining are eliminated. It's all very complex and sophisticated. 

Pregnant in Heels depicts the life of Rosie Pope, pregnancy concierge to well-off Manhattanites. I was expecting something a little more frivolous, a little more vain but this show has surprised me. Some of Rosie's clients are over the top, needing some serious parenting themselves but others have legitimate issues around pregnancy and becoming a mother, and Rosie helps them address their fears prior to the birth of their child. The best part of this show is Rosie's gay stylist. Any gayer than that, and you would burst into flames. He is awesome. 

Say Yes to the Dress reminds me that when people are planning a wedding, they're not in their right mind. It's a form of insanity. Obsessed with finding that "perfect" dress, spending thousands of dollars on a garment they'll wear for a few hours. Bringing their critical friends and family along. It makes no sense to me. It is, however, entertaining. Other people's nuttiness is truly captivating.

I'd say we'll be watching better TV in the fall, but who am I kidding? I think we're always subconsciously looking to lower the bar even further. 'Cause we're cool like that.

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