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Ex-Celebs Compete for Camera Time as ‘The Surreal Life’ Begins January 9by David Bloomberg -- 12/31/2002
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What do you get when you cross Big Brother, The Real World, and any number of celebrity gameshows? You get The Surreal Life, a show that begins on WB, Thursday, January 9, at 9/8 Central (it will then air regularly on Thursday at 9:30/8:30 Central). Yes, it will be up against CSI, the top-rated show on the air right now.
So, what is The Surreal Life? The show itself is advertised with the slogan, “When the stars fall from sight ... this is where they crash.” Oh, that is not encouraging. It’s like shouting out, “Hey! We’ve got a bunch of has-beens and never-weres here! They’ll do anything to get their faces back on TV!” Indeed, the promotional material on the show’s website adds, “Once they were superstars. Now, they're back in the spotlight as they share a home and a series of outrageous and life-changing events…”
Well, they’re on WB up against CSI, so I’m not sure you can really call that the “spotlight,” but let’s not nitpick on that point.
The ex-stars (or, in some cases, never-stars) participating in the show are:
These “celebrities” have to live together in a house for ten days and nights, though it’s not clear how many episodes this will result in. The website proclaims that the recipe for this show is to take these folks, “Throw them together under pressure. Stir.” They will be
The description continues: “they must interact with each other, share bedrooms and bathrooms, do household chores, go grocery shopping and prepare meals together. The cameras never stop rolling, so the power struggles and personality clashes are all captured on film - along with the very real new friendships.”
Now let’s look at this. We’re talking ten whole days. Big freaking deal. Under normal circumstances, that’s barely enough time to get to know somebody, let alone get annoyed by ‘em. But, of course, these are all people seeking camera time, so I’m sure there will be plenty of annoyances to get excited and upset about for those cameras that never stop rolling.
Besides, they won’t really be stuck inside the house during those ten days. The website says there will be a group camping trip. There will be a “surprising Hollywood wedding.” Not to mention a softball game (which I presume will involve others since seven people doesn’t make for much of a game). And, of course, “Naked Sushi night.” Is the sushi naked, or are they? Well, two of ‘em have already gotten naked for the world, but I’d really prefer that the rest of ‘em keep their clothes on, thanks.
But really, what does “The Surreal Life” mean? Well, my dictionary defines “surreal” as “of, or related to, or characteristic of surrealism.” Oh, that’s helpeful. Moving on to “surrealism,” we find: “a modern movement in art and literature, in which an attempt is made to portray or interpret the workings of the unconscious mind as manifested in dreams: it is characterized by an irrational, fantastic arrangement of material.” So putting these “celebrities” together is irrational and a fantastic arrangement? Hmmm. Wait, there’s a second definition of “surreal”: bizarre, fantastic, grotesque.” OK, now we’re getting somewhere. I think those three words describe all possible outcomes for this show. It could be fantastic. I have my doubts but we won’t know ‘til we watch it. It most definitely could be bizarre. In fact, I strongly suspect this will be the case, whether it’s good or bad. And it could be grotesque.
But no matter what it is, I’ll be watching at least in the beginning. After all, it can’t be worse than, say, The Anna Nicole Show. Who knows, maybe with all these folks mugging for the cameras, it might even be amusing. We’ll just have to wait and see.
(RealityNewsOnline is still looking for a writer to recap this show. If you are interested, check out our “Write for Us” page).
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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