Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Segregation in Reality

Ah, Survivor, the mother of the current reality show craze. I get into it sometimes. It all depends on who the contestants are. If they are mostly hot-bodied, 20-something, celebrity wannabes, I could care less. But if they are mostly funky, wacky, weird, or completely obnoxious, I’m hooked. Probably my most favorite contestants ever were Rupert (‘cause he's a scruffy teddy-bear, the idea to leave the other team shoeless was his (ha!), and plus he has a heart of gold) and Boston Rob (‘cause he’s my home boy, the accent’s a piss-ah, and plus he’s a conniving bastard).

So, where am I going with all this? Well I just read that for the upcoming Survivor: Cook Islands, the teams will be divided by race (and ethnicity). Yes, race (and ethnicity)! There will be four teams: Whites, Blacks, Latinos and Asians. I was totally like, what the hell? I can’t believe they are doing that! I mean, actually have a Survivor cast that includes more than just one or two token minorities? Wow!

Now, would I have preferred that they not assign teams based on race? For sure. (Though it is reality TV, after all.) But am I happy they finally got some diversity up in there. Hell yeah. (It's about friggin' time.) Now we just have to hope that the cast includes some non-racist Whites, some non-athletic Blacks, some educated Latinos, and some dumb-ass Asians, so that the show doesn’t merely serve to confirm all the usual stereotypes. Stay tuned…


Michael C said...

Is it a hint that the whole reality TV craze is winding down and losing momentum when they begin segregating their teams?

It'll be interesting to see how the ratings do. I still can't believe a TV exec somewhere OK'd this, oh wait a minute, yes I can.

Vive42 said...

yeah but are they hot 20-something whites, asians, blacks, and latinos? cause otherwise i'm not watching!


michael c: Yeah, seems like the idea is being trashed in many quarters, but as a gimmick to increase buzz about the show it’s genius.

Vive42: Based on the pics posted by CBS, the group seems a bit scruffier than other seasons, but there will still be some buff bodies, not to worry!


I am now really confused, though. Since I posted the Survivor piece I scrutinized all the pics/bios on the CBS website and it seems that one of the contestants is both Black and Latino. Whose team is he on? I think we need a new team for Black Latinos.

Also one of the Black people has Jamaican parents. She needs her own team, too. Maybe call it Black Caribbean Islander Americans who are not also Latino.

One of the Latinos is Mexican, but he’s one of those white Euro Mexicans. He should be on his own team because I don’t think he really counts as Latino.

Oh, and it seems that the token gay is one of the Latinos. We should make a separate team for gay Latinos because they don’t get along with straight Latinos. I think it’s a macho thing.

And then there is this Asian-looking person, but she has a Spanish-sounding name. She should have her own team because otherwise people are going to get mixed up.

Also, it seems that one of the Asians might be Indian (as in from India). That’s too confusing because she doesn’t look like the other Asians. We need an Indian team.

And speaking of Indians is it really fair that there is no Native American team? The bio for one Asian guy says he belongs to a moose lodge. That sounds Native American, so he should be on his own team. We’ll call it pseudo Native Americans.

Obviously Survivor management should have consulted me before they assigned the teams. ;-)


As if this comment is not long enough... Just wanted to add that I already hate the contestant who wrote that he attended "the prestigious Phillips Andover prep school in Andover, MA." That's a rather pretentious thing to write in a bio. I think he should be first voted off because of it. So there, the tribe has spoken.

Michael C said...

Who in the world would brag about their prep school? He'll be eaten alive (so to speak). That junk might pass on Trump's show, but not Survivor!!

Jill said...

I love Romber and the other scary people who end up on reality tv. As a closet lover of reality contest shows, I have been wanting to see more Latinos for forever!!

Michael C said...

Hey, forgot to ask, do you I mind if I link to your blog?


Jill: Me, too, on both accounts (closet lover of reality TV - but, shh, don't tell - and wondering where all the Latino contestants have been).

Michael C: I would be honored. Thanks.