Thursday, December 16, 2010

Reviewing The Season Of Amazing Race: Where I No Longer Can Save Face

I am fearful that 2003 Christopher is going to barge through the doors one day, and proceed to slap my fragile face silly. At one time, I was a devout hater of reality television, and claimed it was the downfall of television entertainment. I whined that the airwaves were being plagued by reality shows, and taking away spots for some quality scripted entertainment. Now, I still think scripted television is superior to most reality shows, and that scripted shows can evoke feelings, emotions and thoughts far better than anything done by the reality television. But I also have to admit that there is a few reality shows that I now regularly watch. I've claimed on this blog before that this is partly due to the fact that Emily is a fan of many reality television shows, and thus it was almost inevitable that I'd occasionally have one cross my path and take some of my time away. At the same time, it isn't like my wife tied me down to a chair, taped my eye lids open, and commanded that I watch a reality show until it removed its teats while I begged to suckle it. If that was my defense, I am not sure how I'd explain watching a reality show without Emily being around.

For the most part, I watched the entire season of the Amazing Race 17. I got engrossed in the action. I had my favourites picked out, who I'd cheer on weekly. I had the teams that I regularly cheered against too. You could say I was a fan of the Amazing Race, especially since I hunted down the episodes I missed on Rogers On Demand. It became a show on my weekly viewing list, and I found myself rather engaged in the program, and cared about the outcome (like I said, I had those who I was rooting for). All the while, 2003 Christopher, with rage in his eyes, is shaking his fist at me.

I enjoyed Amazing Race because it is a reality show that is an actual competition. The ability to win had more to do with skill, intellect, and communication. The concept of racing around the world is also incredibly appealing. I enjoyed the various locales, though admittedly there was only a minimal focus on the history and culture. You did end up learning a little about each country, and the scenery was often quite stunning. I also enjoyed watching the various competitions, and often they did incorporate parts of that country's culture and history (at some points, they even participated in sports and games from that area). I also found it fascinating how the competition put an incredibly amount of tension on the couples. There is massive stress coming from the competition, and it definitely put a strain on each relationship at some point. It is an example of how a high stress situation will reveal a person's true character or put a test on the solidity of a relationship. The Amazing Racee seems like a good competition to join if a couple has decided they are far too happy together, and it is time to start adding 'I want to tear your throat out' to the relationship routine.

The Amazing Race
may not be as good as a well told fictional story, but it did have its own drama as well. It had some characters that I got attached to on a weekly basis. My original favourites were the father and son pair, Michael and Kevin, who actually were popular among the YouTube crowd before this show (I'd only been alerted to their videos after I started watching this season). You could really sense the love and respect between the pair, and they were a very likable team. I also rooted for the pair of doctors because not only were they really strong competitors, but they seemed to be respectful to their competition. The doctors were also one of the only teams that never blew up at each other, and always remained encouraging, patient and supportive of each other. I respected that about them, and it made them the team I wanted to root for. Plus they also had the chance to pull off an Amazing Race first by being the first all female team to win.

In any show, if your have favourites then you also need your villains. There was one team that I took a very strong disliking to, or actually, it was only one member of that team that I was particularly opposed to. There was a team that was known as punk rockers because they were all tattooed and pierced. That is definitely not my problem with them, especially since I would love to have tattoos and piercings if it wasn't for the fact it hurts a bit more than a tickle (my pain tolerance). My problem was that this team was the exact opposite compared to the doctors. The boyfriend constantly yelled at his girlfriend, and on many occasions even called her a moron. He would be disrespectful to the citizens of the countries because he felt they weren't driving him fast enough or giving him a fair chance at a competition. He would lie and be disrespectful to his competition as well. For most of the series, I cheered more for their elimination than I did for the victory of my favourite teams. My dislike for them would only make the satisfaction stronger when defeat came their way.

There you go, I have to admit my own defeat, and declare that there is reality shows that I watch on a regular basis (as my blog revealed weeks ago, I've also been watching this season of Survivor). This means there probably won't be anymore anti reality show rants. There actually are times that I get excited and giddy about a new episode (2003 Christopher so wants to punch my eyeball). It seems my hatred of reality TV was harder to keep, when I actually started watching the shows I ranted against. But I will still stand strong to my claim that a good scripted show is far superior than anything reality can throw out there. Or at least, that is my attempt to save a little credibility.

2 comments:

  1. Anonymous8:04 pm

    Scott Martin via Facebook:

    reality shows can take the best of us down. stinkin hell's kitchen

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yeah, it was on a bad time slot this season (on during Modern Family or TUF) so I missed huge portions of it. I did catch snippets of the finale though, and I am happy with who won.

    ReplyDelete