Thursday, May 31, 2007

Ask and You Shall Receive

A new reality show in the Netherlands has been causing roars and indignation all over the World. The “Big Donor Show” will have contestants vying for a terminally ill woman’s liver. Yes it’s grotesque, unethical and disturbing but we asked for it.

The Big Donor Show” is the result of the evolution (and I use the term very loosely) of our television habits. We watch “Survivor” because we like to see how raw humans can get in a state of survival. We watch “The Bachelor” because we like to see women being dumped. We watch “American Idol” partly because we like to see people fail almost as much as we like to see people succeed. We watch “Extreme Makeover” because we like to see ugly people. We’ve watched “The Apprentice” because we’ve liked seeing people struggle at work and ultimately get fired and we watch “The Biggest Loser” partly because we like to watch people who are fat and who fail at dieting, just like we have.

Now, instead of tribal consults and boardroom meetings, we’re dealing with organs. We asked for it.

We watch people at their lowest … and we dare ask for more.

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