Friday, October 20, 2006

I'm smarter than I am pretty, and thus I judge

Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. Hot Or Not. . Extreme Makeover. The Biggest Loser. All of them, more or less, take an overweight frump and render them vaguely shaggable, whether by improving their dress sense, whittling down their figure or cutting off their nose and making them a new one (I’m not the only person who finds Extreme Makeover about as wrong as wrong can be, right?).

Because of this, people complain about their vapidity and superficiality. They contribute to the cult of celebrity, with its focus on one’s appearance. They should be stopped.

Well, I agree with the first two points, but I think that banning such shows would be missing a major opportunity.

You want the media to extol the virtues of a good personality, a rapier-like wit, an ability to charm? Then what we need, ladies and gentlemen, is a new breed of game show. The personality makeover genre.

Funny Or Not was the concept that started this blog. The original show doesn’t air in Australia, so for those of you who haven’t heard of it, basically a woman walks out onto a stage wearing a bikini and a panel of men tell her whether she’s hot enough (“your thighs touch at the top. Not hot. Next!”). In my version, contestants walk out and have three minutes to demonstrate their sense of humour. Anyone who disclaims their attempt with ‘I have a strange sense of humour’ or quotes from pop culture is automatically Not Funny.

Quick Wit for the Dimwit would involve a team of sharp-tongued friends accompanying some hapless soul to every work function, party and date s/he goes on for a few weeks and giving them helpful tips on how to socialise better. It would perpetuate my favourite Urban Dictionary term ever: Third Joke.

Extreme Personality Makeover would take people who actually had socially crippling disabilities, like undiagnosed depression, and feed them medication until they acted like everyone else. They might be bland and plastic, but hey, at least they’re normal. I mentioned I hate Extreme Makeover, right?

As for The Biggest Loser, I don’t think we need to change the name. Any guy still using chat-up lines in an un-ironic sense, or girl who talks about how much she wants babies on the first date* gets voted out.

I think there's a new era coming, my friends. I can smell it on the air.

*Talks about it on the first date. Although wanting babies on the first date would admittedly be worse. And difficult to organise.


Anonymous Jason B. Standing said...

1) Third joke ? There's rules about that sort of thing now ? Goddamn, you're gonna be crying "TWELFTH JOKE" in a feeble attempt to stem the torrent-like flow of semi-wit issuing from my lips next time we meet.
2) I'd never ask for babies on a first date. There's not enough meat on them for my liking.

20 October, 2006  

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