Popular Chinese Reality Show, Dad! Where are We Going?
In International Reality news, The Hollywood Reporter reports that, “China’s state censor is banning the children of the rich and famous from appearing on reality TV shows, a move local critics believe is to stop them from further embarrassing their parents and the government.” By which, they of course mean, just the government.
According to the Los Angeles Times, “Chinese authorities have tightened controls over the country’s television and online programming in recent years, releasing a slew of regulations to curtail perceived vulgarity and materialism.” Translation: they don’t want the great unwashed masses questioning the rich and powerful due to displays of vulgarity by their scions and, more importantly, they don’t want those same unwashed masses desiring the material goods of the rich and powerful. (That way lies revolution!)
The New York Post, in turn, notes that in “recent years, China’s national networks had rolled out a number of programs featuring the progeny of the wealthy and elite, sometimes as they try to live the underprivileged lifestyle in which most of China’s population lives (think Paris Hilton and Nicky Hilton circa “The Simple Life”).”
What these censors don’t understand is that celebrities humiliating themselves on TV doesn’t damage their class status at all. Nor does it inspire a class revolution. We here in the United States have been conducting a twenty-five year social experiment and what we have found is that <academese> the sheer vapidity of the programming inculcates in the viewer a deep sense of superiority while, paradoxically, engaging the part of the brain that triggers aspirational thoughts in the viewers, causing them to want to be just like the Kardashians, Housewives or even the Duggar clan. </academese>
And even those predisposed to hate the rich and powerful in Reality–the people who work in it and see just how flawed and oftentimes repulsive the rich and powerful can be–raise not so much as a pinky finger to bring them down. Instead we feel superior to and ridicule the Talent. What’s not to ridicule, after all? While we produce programming that makes them richer and more famous, we get to cling to our zero job security, and complete lack of benefits or any retirement plans. So suck it, Farrah Abraham! Uh, never mind …
Anyhoozles the Chinese State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT) needs to chillax. If they really want Communist Rule 4 Eva, they should embrace celebrity reality.
Just look at what Reality’s managed to do for the US.