By the time I was old enough to actually take interest in the drivel on MTV, the station was already well on its way to being morally bankrupt television. Between Spring Break programs and re-run after re-run of the Real World and Road Rules, the channel was well on its way to completely exploiting the sex appeal and absurd drama of college-aged people. Then we were faced with the trite lives of high school students with shows like Laguna Beach and My Super Sweet Sixteen. Why couldn't it end there?
However, MTV's newest reality endeavor is perhaps its biggest atrocity ever: Jersey Shore. Following their philosophy of choosing the most batshit insane people possible, MTV casted eight Italian-Americans who toss the term Guido around pretty liberally, making a bad name not only for themselves but for Italian-Americans in general. Television is no stranger to racial stereotyping, but seeing it in action this way is appalling.
Even if we forget the recent controversy over cast-mate 'Snookie' getting punched in the face by another cast member (apparently MTV is cool with Guido domestic violence), what are we left with? The guys are obsessed with their (likely steroid enhanced) bodies, and the overly gelled, chemical laced remnants of what used to be their hair. The girls are just about as bad, only they wear far more revealing clothes and for some reason are incredibly attracted to men with no personalities. In fact, the guys and girls seem to have pretty much everything in common except for the rock hard abs.
They all go tanning. They're all out looking to hookup and have a good lay. They all drink to excess. They cheat on their boyfriends and girlfriends. You know, this sounds a whole lot like what I wrote on party girls
a few weeks ago. As many of my commenter's pointed out then, guys are guilty of such behavior too. Well, we certainly have irrefutable evidence now, don't we? As far as this show is concerned, partying is life. Even if these people are totally different in their private lives, this show has completely ruined their characters. That said, how the hell are they cool with being branded as idiotic Guido?
I won't deny that this is probably entertaining for many people. I'm sure there are those that find these type of people really attractive, or like to watch how complete imbeciles choose to live their lives. Maybe some people just want to know what it's like to vacation on the Jersey shore. If that last one is the case though, let me dispel some of the rumors.
Being a resident of New Jersey, I've been down the shore many times, Seaside included. I can say for certain that the show's viewpoint is extremely skewed. Even though it sort of is a shit hole, Seaside is NOT completely filled with over-sexed, under-dressed, loose women or men who are in a constant state of roid-rage and muscle worship. While there are some establishments that pander to those types of people, for the most part it's actually a family-friendly place.
Honestly, the show seems like just another attempt by MTV to promote a life of heavy partying and sex. This time, rather than following the lives of the privileged, they're following the lives of people who try to emulate the privileged. The worst part of all of this is not its moral and racial insensitivity, but the fact that MTV KNOWS who watches their programming: impressionable teenagers. So here's my question to you: why does MTV continue to promote people engaging in such questionable activities?