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Is real life really so entertaining? It used to be that entertainment required complete scripts, rehearsals and all of the elements that capture the audience’s attention through premeditated thought, planning and staging. With the introduction of reality television, those elements seem no longer to be a requirement. Or is there another side to the story?
The Unreal Aspects of Reality TV
While the average viewer may not realize it, reality television does involve a large degree of viewer manipulation. Each time reality TV contestants are interviewed after their experiences they state that they did, in fact, say and do the things that viewers saw. This gives the impression that viewers were presented with reality.
The fact is that directors and producers set up extraordinary circumstances to which reality TV contestants must react. For example, nowhere in real life does a man get to choose the love of his life from 25 doting female contestants who are trapped inside a house together and disallowed access to television, their cell phones and the Internet. The surreal circumstances bring out extraordinary and unusual behaviors in the contestants who suddenly cry or become enraged in ways that may be out of line with their regular personalities and character.
The Appeal of Reality TV
The combination of real and surreal is what appeals to viewers who see themselves in the contestants or are exposed to outrageous behaviors that inspire utter disbelief. While real life can be monotonous and dull, the life lived on reality television arouses the feeling that possibilities exist for romance, athleticism, extreme weight loss and other exciting endeavors.