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IB English HL - FOA

Naomi Murata

on 9 April 2015

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Transcript of TV VS REALITY

TV Reality ≠ Reality
TV changes the audience's version of reality
TV reality is blatantly fake and is marketed for entertainment purposes only
the world or the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them.
But why do they do this??
Producers don't intentionally want to change our realities
It's only for the ratings!
how to get the most views in a certain time
get a variety of people to watch the same show
simple funny TV shows that
"dumb down" so people of all ages can understand
no hard cultural context, everyone can laugh at the jokes, understand situation
scripted TV show, people believe that it is true
participants and judges told to act certain way
The Voice-NBC 8.00 pm
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS 10.00 pm
creates an illusion that crime happens very frequently to ordinary people
over-dramatizes murder cases (e.g. extensive technology equipment)
Dancing with the Stars ABC
8.00 pm
“He explained that he wanted to cause some drama on the live portion of the show so that they wouldn’t be able to resist keeping us around, hoping for more fireworks.
“It seems to have worked -- we weren’t eliminated that week.”
-Hope Solo

“He explained that he wanted to cause some drama on the live portion of the show so that they wouldn’t be able to resist keeping us around, hoping for more fireworks.
“It seems to have worked -- we weren’t eliminated that week.”
-Hope Solo, participant in 2011

Gordon Ramsey
How he started out:
What TV made him become:
Faking it (2000): help prospective chef learn techniques
:won 2001 BAFTA for "Best Factual TV Moment"
he started out being completely himself, nearly unscripted, yes he had temper, but not overly dramatized
restaurant is winner of 3 Michelin Stars
himself won 3 Catey Awards (3 people in the world)
Phenomenal Chef! But do people care?
TV shows sell his infamous short temper as more entertaining than his accomplishments
"the chef who's good at cooking but has terrible temper"
Imagine watching Hell's Kitchen without all the swearing, would that be as entertaining?
why does Gordon get his own Prime Time TV show while other top chefs don't?
Everyone can enjoy watching Hell's Kitchen, Kitchen Nightmares and MasterChef because of all the drama and the insults involved, not only those interested in restaurants or food.
Obvious Much?
Film/Editing Elements
TV Shows always have background music to increase tension during dramatic scenes
Also, intro songs added to identify a particular show
Adds tension and anticipation
mini scene -> intro -> episode
create a fake reality where something hard and boring looks extremely fun, just so people don't change channels
Gain most viewers and high ratings
Unfortunately most of them are unrealistic, dramatic, manipulated
Teen Mom MTV
4 mill views each Tuesday night -> #1 watched show on Tuesdays
MTV created a second season because of the popularity of the first
Lauren Dolgen: Teen Mom raises awareness for teenagers about how hard parenting is:
Dramatic fights, scripted words, attention wars
Meaningful intentions, but does not document real life. Only "interesting" parts of their lives
Does not represent whole population
Most prime time TV shows showcase racial stereotypes
Have one or two minorities as characters, but sometimes not even the main ones.
e.g. Castle: Esposito is the only hispanic character

Teen Mom:
Most of them are Caucasian girls, stereotypical: white girls being "irresponsible"
CDC 2002: Black and Hispanic teen pregnancy rate is 2.5x higher than white teenagers
People might not know this, leading to stereotypes about a certain race
Also does not successfully raise awareness as the main supposed target group is not represented
Effects and Implications of Teen Mom
Earn $240,000 each
more money than any teen mom would make
more many than a lot of people make
Yes there are a lot of drama, but they also put in those "in the end, everything's alright" scenes
(not including appearances and endorsement deals)
What Should We Do?
TV Shows do influence our perception of reality, but we can't blame them for it
"Reality should not be manipulated in any way shape or form"
-Raven Taylor, The Real in Reality Television
"Primary priority of TV shows is to entertain first...we must watch shows critically"
Scripted, you say?
What do I mean by "scripted"?
are planned, not real, fake
really do have "TV Personalities" and "Real Personalities" and yes sometimes they are very different.
are the real bosses in the TV industry, not judges, not the "voters".
"We know this already"
Yes, for certain shows, it does seem very obvious
You might even say, "Psh, this is old news"
But do you really know HOW MUCH is faked?
The Bachelor
Mike Fleiss, Creator and Executive Producer
of The Bachelor
"I think that most of the shows are fake."
loosely scripted
Things are
. Things are

salted into the environment
so things seem more shocking.”
According to one of the contestants, there is a huge table set up during filming with all sorts of alcoholic beverages.
The women are encouraged by the producers to "drink their hearts out" before filming.
they aren't all emotional wrecks, they're just drunk
and the one that quits? well..

The Geeks
The Beauties
They're "Geeked up"
Are told to act more stupid than normal
Made to wear more provocative clothing etc.
Janet Dickinson, former panel judge & supermodel
"It's rigged!"
Winners are pre-selected by the sponsors of the show
Words and scenes are edited in/out to make certain contestants seem better/worse
Contestants are give ROLES as the drama queen or the chill cool one etc.
Asia's Next Top Model
the models don't actually leave when they're eliminated
just made more dramatic
also for confidentiality
on American Idol
Simon Cowell
Bashed him on stage for his "horrible performance"
But backstage, complimented him and thanked him for boosting the ratings
"The art of switching around contestant sound bites recorded at different times and patched together to create what appears to be a seamless narrative."
creates a more dramatic situation
According to "The Entertained Culture"...
People believe crime is more prevalent than in actuality
Probably because of so many popular crime shows that showcase everyday lives
Combined with hearing the news of increasing crime rates (which also is questionable)
people's reality might get affected
Viewers often allow other people to determine "reality" for them
Ex of this phenomenon - 1984
George Orwell depicts this danger in 1984 when humans begin to believe everything that is depicted on the telescreens
-> this portrays humanity's
seemingly natural tendancy to be
easily swayed by what they "see".
"(Viewers) know it's somewhat fake, but they're OK with it."
But we still have to be careful as viewers because there will be an inevitable impact on the way we percieve reality
Research shows that purport to be "real" negatively impacts the way TV viewers think of the world
People who watched shows like "Keeping Up with the Kardashians"
Reported to think that the cattiness and backstabbing that takes place between sisters is expected and usual
After surveying 145 undergrad students about their reality TV habits, people who watch more "reality" shows were more likely to
think that bad behavior
having sex on the first date
having multiple sexual partners
Is the status quo
Vicariously Living Through Television
experience the "drama" of...
buying a new house
bidding for storage
making giant fish tanks
the life of celebrities
without exerting any energy or risking your own inner safety

Media affects people's perception of crime
In memory of
Shain Gandee
Star of
Tearing through mudholes, living free and reckless
-> His vehicle got stuck in a mudpitt while off camera
Him and two passengers found dead (carbon monoxide poisoning)
Full transcript