Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Oh, Brother!

Last night I caught ten minutes of this summer's version of needles poking me repeatedly in the eyes . . . er, Big Brother.

Riddle me this, Batman: Who are these people who audition to be on such a crappy show where pretty much everyone ends up reviled and ridiculed and only one person gets money?

On the Amazing Race, even the losers get to travel to "amazing" places. And, at least on Survivor and The Apprentice some of the castaways/apprenti end up with other opportunities in entertainment or business. It doesn't seem to be the case with Big Brother.

While there are some parallels between Big Brother and The Real World in terms of revulsion and ridicule faced by the "roommates," they are at least uniformly young, inexperienced, and stupid (and relatively younger and less experienced -- though certainly no stupider -- than the Big Brother "housemates"). Even so, there are a couple of interesting differences. It seems MTV plies the roommates with great cities to live in, great digs, and enough free alcohol to fell a herd of elephants. On the other hand, BB housemates are isolated in a weirdly sterile production studio of a home and given peanut butter and jelly to eat. Furthermore, plenty of the roommates parlay the RW experience, appropriately enough, into speaking gigs to other young, inexperienced, and stupid people, mostly on college campuses across the country. I'm unaware of a similar phenomenon with the BB housemates. Finally, a small, but significant, number of the RW roommates have developed a cottage industry of repeatedly appearing in the Real World/Road Rules Challenges that MTV produces with freakish regularity. The housemates from BB get dumped out on a studio lot once they're evicted and CBS seldom looks back at them.

As I said, I've never applied to be a cast member on any reality show,* so perhaps it's just my own lack of imagination and initiative that leaves me wondering at the motivation of reality show wannabes.

So, help me out. If you've ever sent in an audition for a reality show or gone to an open casting call for one, why? Really, I want to know (especially if that show was Big Brother).

*I was a junior in college -- you know, young, inexperienced, and stupid -- when I discovered Real World Los Angeles. I so almost applied for the next season. I'm really glad I didn't. The next season was in San Francisco. I couldn't imagine having been Puck's roommate.


Anonymous fullmoon said...

Speak up Trailhead Spouse!

11:42 AM  
Blogger Wasteland Fan said...

Ah, yes, I'd forgotten about the kangaroo -- it was a kangaroo, wasn't it? -- suit.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Trailhead said...

No, it wasn't a kangaroo suit and it wasn't Big Brother. It was the second season of Survivor. As for the suit, I think you're thinking of the griffin suit worn at the First Annual Halloween Party in 1998.

12:11 PM  
Blogger Wasteland Fan said...

This is how rumors get started. Where did I get a kangaroo suit? Was it that one of Trailhead Dogs was humorously cast as a kangaroo? I remembered it was Survivor and, as a result, way more defensible than Big Brother. It was early in the reality TV explosion and offered what seemed at the time a really unique experience.

I also recall that, prior to the appearance of Trailhead Kid, Trailhead and Trailhead Spouse toyed with the idea of applying for the Amazing Race. Again, as I indicate in the post, that is a desire I get. I think I'd suck at the race part, so I'd never apply. But, I get it. The chance to travel all over the world is an understandable motivation for applying.

1:01 PM  
Blogger Trailhead said...

We'd still love to do the AR, but we realized you have to have either good looks or charisma or both and so it doesn't seem like it's worth the time to apply. Re the kangaroo, it was TH Dog (Brown) who was cast as the "Urban Lion."

2:10 PM  
Blogger Wasteland Fan said...

Apparently, if Jonathan and Victoria are any indication, you could be cast by being an abusive couple. Unfortunately, THS's laid back attitude is probably too much in his very fiber to pull off "menacing psychopath of a husband" with any believability.

3:05 PM  
Blogger Trailhead said...

There goes my gender anonymity. Oh well. Like my legions of non-acquainted readers hadn't figured it out already.

7:25 PM  

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