Simon But Deadly

What hath American Idol wrought? It seems that everywhere you turn on television these days that you’re confronted with yet another installment of reality TV. You’ve got a number of people thrown together for a certain amount of time with certain members voted out and finally a winner proclaimed. And I’m not talking about Big Brother or Survivor. I’m talking about Miss America.

Haven’t you heard? The pageant organizers decided to jazz it up to attract more viewers. So they turned it into a reality show-type pageant. Now instead of an intense week-long pageant (including the time for judges’ interviews, practice sessions to learn the various marks on stage, and preliminaries) with only the final night of competition broadcast to the world, the TLC channel has a month-long pageant to broadcast. And with viewer participation to boot. Every bit of the pageant is now out there for the world to see.

Watching the competition of the women behind the scenes is akin to a man watching his wife/girlfriend put on makeup before a big night out. Some men might find it sexy, but it takes the allure and mystery out of the process. It’s almost like leaving the bathroom door open when you’re doing your business. Do we really need that much familiarity?

It really knocks Miss America off her pedestal. Some Miss America’s through the years have been knocked off that pedestal, either by their own doing or by others exploiting their earlier doings. Why don’t we leave her on her pedestal? In a world beaten up with financial crises, we need some beauty, some allure, some mystery as an escape from the harsh realities of the world. We don’t need to bring Miss America down to Simon Cowell’s callous reality-TV level. We need more of the old Miss America, more of the old Disney Prince Charming, more aspiration that there is something good, and pure, and beautiful still left in this world.


  1. I totally agree. What is this tv world coming to?

  2. For a brief but awful period I found myself trapped in a hotel in nowheresville with only a few channels on the tv. Unfortunately one of them was showing the horrid program "Big Brother" which I became mildly obsessed with watching. The disease passed eventually and I am hoping it will not recur.

  3. To me it's similar to what the creator of the bikini said (and I paraphrase), "the bikini is sexier than naked because it leaves things to the imagination." There's not a whole lot of stuff left to the imagination anymore...