This should be the year that made clear the distinction between the publicity-hungry, irremediably ego-needy actual denizens of show business (like myself) and the way more grotesquely hungry and ego-needy residents of the show-business underworld known charitably as "reality TV." If the Heenes weren't warning enough, here came the Salahis -- both families obviously just this close to the line of offering to kill family members if only it would get them on a TV series.
It was obvious something was adrift, or ajar, when the phrase "reality-TV star" began to be written and uttered with no trace of irony, even as more and more of these folks became involved this year in various serious crimes. And it will probably be no later than Monday before some defender of the Salahis analogizes them to computer hackers, suggesting that they performed a public service by probing for, and finding, holes in the Secret Service's security perimeter. Indeed they did, and their reward should be a two-season stint on a new reality show, The Real Housewives (and Househusbands) of Federal Prison.
And for the remaining rubes not aware that the "reality" of reality TV is to actual real life as "potted meat food product" is to grass-pastured beef, here's one of the wizards drawing back the curtain for just a moment ...
(Michael Hirschorn, a former executive vice president for original programming at the reality-centric VH1 channel) said prospective reality stars were becoming smarter
about “self-producing,” knowing they had to inject drama into the
“At this point,” he said, “there must be what, a
thousand reality personalities on TV at any one time? So they know they
have to stand out.”
Could they stand out in a South Dakota prairie in late January? You know, just for our entertainment ...