Monday, February 16, 2009

I want my RTV

It's amazing to think that 10 years ago, no one had heard of reality tv. Now you can't escape it, and it's not going anywhere. I resisted the enticement until we had Abby--then there was a period of weeks that I was home all the time and in front of the television a LOT, and I got pulled in. The market is flooded with wannabe reality hits now, and I consider my standards pretty high. Now that we're thick in the season of the best, I thought I'd give a countdown of my favorites. (is it actually a count-up since I'm starting at #1? No matter.)

1. American Idol. A few reasons I think this is the best: it's based on actual talent, it involves the viewer through voting, and it captures the essence of the American dream: a nobody becoming THE somebody. When you watch the final 3 contestants meet swarms of screaming fans on their hometown visit, you realize how quickly fame can be achieved.

2. The Amazing Race. I love this show! The places the contestants get to go, and the things they have to do, are ingenious. They are challenged in every possible way. There are always bizarre personalities, but there are always people that you want to root for and wish you were BFF with, too. Plus I like trying to catch the host, Phil, slip a little of his New Zealand accent into certain words. Why does he try to hide that lovely sound?

3. Survivor. The daddy that started them all. The producers of this show are genius because 1) they have continually managed to keep the show new and different, so you never have the same game twice and 2) they have done whatever necessary to keep Jeff Probst on as host. That man IS Survivor, and if he ever leaves the show is doomed. He is funny and he tells it like it is, and if you have as many whiny idiots in one place as Survivor tends to, that's crucial. Anybody can be a polite host--I want clever.

4. Project Runway. This is the only non-network reality show that I watch, and I really don't know how I got sucked in. I just know that I love Heidi Klum, I love Tim Gunn, and I love being shocked at the absurd clothes these people create. Matt eventually got addicted with me despite himself, and I will never get tired of hearing him say something like, "Those ruffles just don't mesh with the overall look she was trying to achieve, and the fabric choice is all wrong." Nothing like a man unafraid of channeling his fashion sense.

5. The Bachelor. I know, I know, this one borders on sleazy. Well, it's really quite over the border. But still, it's silly fun, and every once in a while there are moments of sincerity that are worth the effort. Still, if the bachelor (or bachelorette) is a schmuck, I refuse to watch it.

I realize that there is an absence of any cooking, hairstyling, or drug rehab shows on here, and that is by choice. I have reached my limit. What about you? What do you think I got right? Wrong? Have a swayed you to watch anything new? Convinced you to throw out your television?

18 comments:

Heidi Horn said...

Hello? Where in the world is Dancing With The Stars? Come on! It is also one that involves audience participation, it includes our favorite celebrities, ones we forgot, and ones we can't believe had the guts to attempt to dance or wear those outfits!! Plus, we get to see some really improve and get in great shape...not to mention how hot some of those male dancers are!!

Autumn said...

I think you pretty well nailed it for most people, although I never got into Survivor and usually resist the Bachelor/ette. As always I'm all over anything that takes place in a kitchen (Next Food Network Star, Hell's Kitchen, etc.), but then anyone who knows me wouldn't be surprised.

Mandy said...

I am pretty crazy about So you think you can dance. That is actually my all time fav. They haven't had one on in a while but I think they usually start one up about the time Idol is finishing up. Is Project Runway starting back up?

Mandy said...

Man, could I have said "up" any more times in that previous post? :) We were just talking about people using extraneous words

Anonymous said...

What about the biggest loser? It ranks right up there with American Idol for me. Also love So You Think You Can Dance.....after all, I was a dancer for a LONG time...did you know that?
Michelle

Matt said...

I agree with American Idol, but the overlap in our favorites ends there. My absolute favorite, even over American Idol, is So You Think You Can Dance (which, Mandy, is only on in the summer)! The only other two that I am willing to watch on a regular basis are America's Next Top Model and Hell's Kitchen.

Cori said...

Mine are as follows: 1.) American Idol 2.) So You Think You Can Dance? 3.) Hell's Kitchen 4.) America's Next Top Model

I also love Iron Chef America and Chopped!

Mandy said...

I am liking Chopped right now too. And I forgot about Biggest Loser - LOVE that one!

Sarah said...

Surprisingly, I don't watch ANY of your top 5-- which probably speaks to the over-saturation of reality shows in our lives.

So You Think You Can Dance? is probably my #1, I discovered The Biggest Loser this season and am completely addicted, and I somehow got wrapped up in Shear Genius on Bravo. Don't judge me.

I have a lot of respect for the pioneers of RTV (Survivor, AI, etc.) but only have so much room in my life and on my DVR...

Good post.

Mandy said...

I forgot about Shear Genius - I watch that one too. Man, I didn't realize how much RTV I watch!

Melanie said...

I consider RTV purely a guilty pleasure. My favorites would have to be the cooking ones (Top Chef, Hell's Kitchen, and does Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares count too?). I'll watch Dancing with the Stars every once in a while...I watch it like American Idol: to keep up with what people are talking about. My mom got me started on Project Runway when the girl from Little Rock was on (I LOVED her seatbelt dress!) so I watch that every once in a while too.

The other night, in a fit of what can only be described as dangerous curiousity and train-wreck shock, I watched an episode of "Bret Michaels and a Bus Full of Skanks"...stay away! it was scary! oh, and for some crazy reason, I will watch Sunset Tan if it's on...I can't explain why. Maybe it makes me feel normal!

Anonymous said...

My #1 has to be American Idol! #2 The Biggest Loser which comes on the same time as AI and I do not have a DVR. #3 Jon and Kate Plus 8 for obvious reasons! Every now and then I will watch The Bachelor and True Beauty.

Patty

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