Originally Posted by cruisin
... As for the talent shows, they are closer to "real" than the others.
I would say so, too. It seems to me, there are three or four sort-of "sub-genres" of so-called reality shows: Watch 'em work shows, like truckers, fishermen, bike builders, cops; Contrived contests, like obstacle courses, treasure hunts, Survivor; Voyeurism for no reason whatsoever, like swapping wives, Amish, Big Brother, and that MTV one that started it all (forgot the name).
And then there are talent shows. All of these reality shows are contrived, edited for drama, designed to shock, amaze and tear-jerk. But it seems to me that talent shows have two redeeming qualities: One is that anyone can walk in off the street and try out; and every now and then, they find someone from out of nowhere with actual talent, like the 40-year old mobile phone sales guy who sang in the shower and now has five albums.
It's at least a vicarious thrill for me to watch these people be discovered. I can do without the dramatic flourishes, or making sport of the really bad performers. But that's television, I guess.