For the past 15 years, reality television has been growing in popularity among college students.It has been able to capture the good, the bad and the ugly moments from real-life people to A-list celebrities.
From documenting the lives of seven strangers forced to live in a house to participating in gruesome challenges where slugs are the night’s main course, reality TV has no limits.
The Real World was one of the first reality shows on cable television and probably one of the most realistic shows to have ever aired.
As that show paved the way for more and more reality shows, it also molded society into accepting certain taboo lifestyles.
Just about anything can be made into a reality show, whether it’s on high society life or teen pregnancy. But how are these shows affecting the way the youth perceives life today?
“I think certain things that were once not very much accepted in society are more accepted now because of reality television,” said ASU student Mary Laffey.
“Some reality shows film the cast drinking and partying which may give the impression to much younger and underage students that it’s OK to do that.”
Even ordinary people are becoming celebrities from shows like Laguna Beach to its spin-off, The Hills.
VH1 is notorious for creating spin-offs to each and every reality program on air, such as the infamous Rock of Love, which inspired the making of Daisy of Love.
There’s something about these “real life” TV shows that just draw in avid watchers.
“It’s obnoxiously addicting, but you don’t want to admit you watch it,” said student Lizzy Chavous.
Not everyone enjoys the entertainment reality TV brings. ASU student Jeff Gray said he doesn’t think its reality.
“It’s written by a bunch of hacks that try to entertain our simple minds by casting self absorbed fools that will embarrass themselves on TV,” Gray said.
Sometimes writers like to juice up the shows and since cameras cannot be rolling 24/7 they have certain days they film.
The “reality” television shows have become what our generation believes is reality, in a world where the car you drive and the clothes you wear can determine your character.