Wednesday, January 19, 2005

My guilty pleasure....

is reality shows. I love them! The more the merrier I say. I do realize that for the most part they have no redeeming value, but I just can't stop watching them. My brother had the same afflication with the Camilla Scott talk show. Remember that one? Another top quality Canadian production. Dave would watch this talk show every afternoon without fail, complaining the whole hour about how horrible it was, that it pained him to watch it. I would ask him repeatedly why he continued to tune in every single afternoon and he would reply, "I just can't stop." I always thought he was borderline crazy, but after watching The Newlyweds marathon over the holidays I finally knew what he was talking about. I couldn't stop watching.

Now The Newlyweds is one of my favourites, no doubt. Watching Jessica Simpson is good for my ego. I felt like a member of Mensa after just one episode. Survivor of course that was the original. I remember tuning in the first episode and wondering what in the hell this show was about. The Apprentice.... how doesn't love the Donald? But seriously he needs to do something about that hair. I do have some reality show standards, I'm not really into the Bachelor/ette(s), my Big Fat Obnoxious anything and most of the shows that Fox develops. I don't watch Extreme Makeover, but I do LOVE Extreme Makeover Home Edition. It certainly puts your problems in persepective when you see what other people are coping with.

My latest favourite is Dog: The Bounty Hunter. From the very first commercial which showed the Dog with his tight black clothes, silver tipped cowoby boots and mullet I was hooked. Dog aka Duane Chapman is a bounty hunter in Hawaii. He works with his wife, son, brother and nephew to hunt down fugitves. Everything about this family is a cliche. You see his wife with her huge hair, long pink fingernails, cleavage like I've never seen before and outfits that should really be outlawed. His son and brother sport that odd hairdo that's a partially shaved head with an outrageously long pony tail. Dog did time years ago for murder and when he was released decided he needed to make something of his life so he became a bounty hunter. You look at this family and you want them to be a joke, you expect them to be a joke. Funny thing is you watch the show and quickly find out they are anything but a joke.

When they are in the process of hunting and apprehending their fugitive they can be pretty hardcore. The second the fugitive is in custody they turn all that hostility off. they seem genuinely concerned for every fugitive the come in contact with. That extends to the fugitive's family, friends and various others they come across during the "hunt". After apprehending a famale fugitive they allowed her son to kiss her good bye and hired him to do odd jobs so they could keep an eye on him while his mom was in jail. From time to time you'll see them leave their phone number with an informant and urge them to call for a "hand up", they offer to help find them jobs, get them into recovery programs. They treat those in their custody with decency and respect. It's not unusual to see them pray with their apprehended suspect before dropping them off with the sheriff's department. It never comes across as fake or like they're showboating for TV. I often wonder as they are offering these people help, giving them the benefit of the doubt, believing that deep down there's a good person in all of us how many people have taken advantage of that good will. How many times have they been disappointed. How do they manage to keep ahold of that while they're dealing with some of the worst society has to offer. More importantly how long can that goodwill last?

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