I don't normally vent here. But this is my website and I need to update it with SOMETHING. But lately, I've just been riding the wave, basically torn between production and writing and being just another person ranting about stuff on the internet.
But one thing that's been stuck in my head, is that of reality television. I enjoy an "amazing race" and think "big brother" is the training wheels to get game show fans into reality competition.
But I haven't really said something that would get me pretty much blacklisted from every production house I hate confessionals.
If you don't know what a confessional is, basically since the dawn of reality television with shows like "the real world" there have been "the confessional", where a character (because in the world of reality TV, they aren't human, they are characters) give their "honest thoughts" on the subject.
On reality competition, it's strategy and game plan, or the crappier "explain what's going on right in front of you" (so-and-so and I are hanging on to a bar for as long as possible)
And some game shows, like Weakest Link or divided use them as well to show conflict...
And the worst abuser of them all, is documentary. The kind of garbage you see like House hunters, to The Kardashian show of the week, to the one with dating people.
It's horrendous. But mostly, at least to me, they only serve one thing - the producers.
The producers already recorded all this footage of people in a game or eating dinner or something. Then they need to have "conflict" to have an episode.
So, given all these hours of footage, they chop together stuff to make something sound coherent.
Maybe so and so had a dinner conversation about wanting a dog, and somebody didn't want a dog that a perfect time to then a few weeks later get them into a green screen studio or a couch and have them say lines like "I want a dog, here's why" and "I don't want a dog, here's why" and then try and create a story about the compromise, maybe get footage at a rescue shelter, maybe show the guy angry stepping in dog shit, that's what we get.
And honestly, I'm pretty sure at this point, audiences don't even believe these confessionals anymore. They are either staged to get the players to say what is necessary, or it's just rambling nonsense that's equatable to somebody angry on YouTube that Cartoon Network isn't the same as it was when they were a kid (this is a evergreen opinion, because CHILDHOOD vs KIDS THESE DAYS)
But the confessional, it's ANNOYING to me, it's ANNOYING on shows like The Office and Modern Family, it's ANNOYING when game shows try to do that to get some sort of sob story.
It's just annoying.
All it is, at least to me, is duct tape for a show to get something together. The same way when you see a documentary have just a talking head say something instead of showing it off.
I am a firm believer in show not tell, and the confessional is pure tell.
An interview with people is fine if it's outside the boundary of the show. But it always feels pieced together in a way that makes it seem like we need a hero and a villain and a conflict.
Is this our future? Are we going to have confessionals on Wheel of Fortune? People explaining why they bought a vowel?
It's an instant turn off for me, and sometimes it pains me to see that used more and more in shows. I don't even like it on Bake-Off.
I understand you want points of view and it helps in that regard, but it takes me immediately away from the action on screen.
If you're going to tell me, it better be things the producers can't obtain or recreate.
It's things like the confessional, that make me less motivated to be in this weird industry.
I'm going to drink a coffee while somebody either says Something positive about me, something because about me or it's me talking about drinking the damn coffee that you clearly see.
Get rid of it, it's unnecessary.