Anyone been watching Big Brother lately? I have to admit, I really enjoyed the first season of BB, and every since then, it has got progressively worse. Now, the sceptic in me always believed that some part of the show was produced, if even just to smoothen out the “reality”, and to be honest, if I was right, and it was strategically produced for show-ability, they certainly did it in a most passive way possible.
BB in Oz embarked on what is certainly the dearth march for the show, and announced a “special” edition for Sunday night. What was the “special” edition? BB had located some fancy piece of hardware that was capable of detecting voice patterns in people, and could identify, within 95% accuracy, whether someone was being truthful or not. Now, as I said before, I always believed BB had an element of production, but the first few years really captured the essence of true “Reality TV”. I mean, the people exhibited all of the qualities you would expect when complete strangers are put into a house, with cameras aimed at every orifice, and are made to battle it out for a big cash prize, with nothing more than their personalities (and clashes) to determine their success or failure. But the fact that the producers of BB have had to resort to contrived events within the house is testament to the fact that the show is just plain boring. And why? Because the people in the house are just plain boring. So, onto my analysis…
It started with Friday Night games! You know, let’s get the house mates to participate in “It’s a Knockout” style antics so that the viewing public can feel content that BB is more than just a bunch of lamo’s sitting around on their back sides. Why did the viewers feel that? Because every year, the house mates have become more and more boring. Why have the become more and more boring? Because the element of surprise is gone.
See, it was inevitable that, as the years passed on, it would be very hard to recreate the electricity and authenticity the first years had. Why? Because everyone who watched the first few series picked up on all the techniques that made the winners win, and they also picked up on the absolute ease in which you could become loved or hated by the viewing public. So each year, new house mates would enter the BB house, and they would be acutely aware of the cameras, and the effect their actions would have on them outside of the house. Not because they knew what the previous house mates had experienced on the outside, but more for the cringe factor they as viewers had experienced watching Hot Dogs going from some loud mouth muzza to hosting his own Titanic of a late night TV show.
But more importantly, and I love to do this every so often, is role play the meetings the producers of BB must have around sponsorship sign-up time. You can imagine the meeting, where the producers are thinking about BB FY+1, and are wandering why the contestants from the current year were so bloody boring!? And if they just keep lying around all day, not doing anything entertaining, why would viewers tune in, and if viewers don’t tune in, why would advertisers give us money. OH NO!! Quick, cook up some saucy plots, get the house mates to participate in everything from Friday Night games, housemate challenges, weak as piss controversy (ooh, big deal, a mother and daughter who had complimentary augmentations), and voila, the new and improved BB.
But just as many of us don’t watch Neighbours or Home and Away and honestly believe Ailsa came back from the dead to haunt Alf, or the guy who plays Paul Robinson in Neighbours is taking a break from his burgeoning acting career to inject some experience and talent into Ramsay Street, we’re not about to believe that what we are seeing in the BB household is reality TV.
And don’t get me started on Gretel Killeen, I mean seriously, does she honestly believe that the more she rolls here eyes and declares, “I know something you don’t”, the more willing we are going to be to sit through the demographic profiled advertisements. Just cop to the fact Grets that the show you’ve pinned your superannuation on has steadily slid from the side of the TV toilet bowl to rest comfortably closer to the ocean with each seasonal flush.
But not wanting to be a complete and utter sourpuss, I thought I would add my favourite “contrived concoction” to the BB wow’shake…an intruder named Miriam who is actually a man!! Whoops, missed the boat on that one a few times (1,2)!