Monday, June 20, 2011

"Shut Up, Paige Turner:" Bravo's Competition Shows

A couple of weeks ago, the TV network Bravo released its new reality-show, Platinum Hit. The show features singer-songwriters as they face challenges that test their creativity & drive with the end result being a $100,000 prize & a record contract. Challenges include writing a love song, creating a dance anthem hit, or creating the perfect road song. And I find this very vexing. A show seems to focus on quick writing & prescribed inspiration, which we can all agree, does not make a lot of great songs (for example, Huey Lewis & the News' song "I Want a New Drug" was written in a couple of minutes & it sounds like it.)

This isn't the first anti-process reality show on Bravo. In Work of Art: The Next Great Artist, contestants must spit out art in a day or two along with following a theme. In episode 5, the contestants must create a piece of art based on their Audi experience, because nothing is more authentic & true as a product placement. The challenges in Top Chef are creative but hardly practical. In the fourth episode of season two, the chefs must whip up dishes using only food from a vending machine, which happens all the time in up-scale restaurants. Just kidding, that never happens. The chefs at Pizza Hut won't even do that no matter how many tantrums & quarters I throw.

So, Bravo, I get what you're doing. You're trying to reach out to the TV viewing demographic who think reality shows like The Jersey Shore is the end of society, but I won't be tricked by you showing me images of lobster foam (who wants to eat lobster foam? I know I don't.) I don't doubt these contestants are creative. They would have to be! But, these shows make writing songs, creating art, & cooking food more about pleasing the buyer & sacrificing your aesthetic in order to win. We live in a world where instant satisfaction is a plus, but for me, instant art isn't a must. So, Bravo, until you create a reality show where these contestants can mull over their work for over a week, I'll put on my top hat & my monocle & say, "Good day to you!"

No comments:

Post a Comment