Friday, September 21, 2007

Reality vs. Scripted

In the comments section to my entry yesterday, my good friend Doug wondered why I watched a new comedy over the new reality show offering that CBS had on against it. Now, Doug knows me from another message board so he knows a little about some of my viewing habits. He knows I'm a faithful follower of American Idol as well as many celeb-reality shows on VH-1. So the question certainly made sense to ask.

For me, I think the pendulum does swing from time to time. At one point not too many years back, I was heavy into the reality show offerings. I was into Idol, Survivor, Big Brother, Rock-Star, Surreal Life, Celebrity Fit Club, etc. I just found these types of shows a bit refreshing - seeing how real people reacted to being put in certain situations, facing certain challenges, etc. But I think I burned out on these from too much "real people". I started to see the cracks in the formulas. It started to not be as fresh and new as it once was. The appeal in some cases was dropping fast.

This was kind of similar to the way I was in the late 90's and the early part of the 2000's with scripted programming. It seemed like every comedy was trying to be Friends. And those few dramas I liked ended up getting axed after a short time by the networks. Seems if it wasn't a crime scene drama or police drama that it didn't stand a chance. Blah.

So, now it's Fall 2007 and I'm trying to strike a happy medium between reality shows and scripted shows. I'll take some reality shows (a competitive one here, a game show there, toss in a celeb or two) and balance it with some scripted shows (a couple dramas, three or four comedies). This way I get a little smattering of everything and I'm not overdoing it on any one type of show.

In the end, I guess it all comes down to finding something that appeals to me, which is how it should be. If I can find a comedic ensemble that I like or a dramatic concept the peeks my interest, then I'm down for that. When that fails, perhaps some unique and quirky real life set-up will work for me. I guess that's the way it'll go for me - unless someone revives the variety show concept successfully. Then I get a mix of all worlds in one shot - singing, celebrity, unscripted moments and some comedy too. That to me was a perfect television mix.


Jim McClain said...

I love reality TV. It's called Major League Baseball! The other shows, not so much.

Martin said...

Jim, I'm not a follower of any sports so I can't comment on MLB. My 11 year old son seems to have taken a liking to the NFL and college hoops though - so now I have to fight for my big screen TV with him.

Anonymous said...

Martin,Your blog is cool! And I love Friends!It is such a great show! By the way i dont have a clue about some of the stuff that your saying thats why im not commenting on it!