Monday, January 5, 2004

The End of Civilization as We Know It (2 of 2)

Someone asked her if it's as bad as she anticipated.  "It's worse," I read her say, silently on the screen, "It's horrible." 

And sister number two, in what is surely deep sympathy with her sister's suffering, says, "Well, you're the one who volunteered to be the one that was covered."

And as sister number two scrambles for the key while sister number one continues to get stung, I'm sure some TV executive is bouncing up and down at what great television this makes.  Human drama.  Real emotion with one sister being hurt and the other frantically trying to help her.  The host helpfully informs us that "twins can feel it when their twin is suffering."  Just, y'know, so we understand how painful this is for both of them.

It very nearly makes me physically ill.  That people voluntarily sign up to be tortured for our viewing pleasure.  That there is enough of a viewing audience that actually derives pleasure from this that this show remains on the air.

It reminds me of The Milgram Obedience to Authority Experiments, in which it was discovered how easily people would cause pain to their fellow human beings when an authority figure told them to do so.  And I thought, we don't even need the authority figure telling them to keep going anymore -- people will do horrible things to other people if you just tell them it will be televised.


hempenhomespun said...

And I thought that show was just something like "I ate a bug . . . did I win money?" That is HORRIBLE. It makes me wonder what sick, twisted mind thought it would be quality viewing anyhow. Are we releasing violent psychopaths to the care of the entertainment industry?

andreakingme said...

Do you remember that Arnold Schwartzenigger (or however you spell it) movie called THE RUNNING MAN? It was about a TV show that televised legal death play of convicted criminals.

I'm really starting to loathe TV. And some days, most of humanity.

grodygeek said...

The only question I have for you is, is TVJ your twin?


hallandoatbran said...

I, too, was on the treadmill watching Fear Factor at that moment. I remember thinking that these people were crazy to let themselves be tortured for the chance to win money. Then I looked down at the treadmill, and realized that at least they might get PAID for their torture... I was paying someone else. And THAT'S the real travisty.

somenuttychic said...

You know, you're right. I've seen Fear Factor a few times and indeed, some of the stunts I saw were horrific. It seems some people will do just about anything to get on TV. How sad. I shudder to think where reality TV will go next once people get accustomed to that sort of thing and get bored with it.

mlraminiak said...

I HATE reality tv...I don't, haven't, and WON'T watch it. You are right. It is extremely frightening what people will do for a few bucks and a little limelight. And that people will watch them do it in sufficient numbers to have created the "reality tv" insanity that now infects our country. Just...EW!!!! :-]