THE BLOG

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Jessica Olien Headshot

MTV Hates Your Brain

Posted: Updated:

There is at times a strange sense of pleasure to be had from watching reality television. Like fashion magazines, reality shows make life seem simple and airbrushed. Men and women prance around communal kitchens in candy-colored outfits and blow-dried hair. Everyone's basic needs are always met. Whoever stays on the island/in the house/with the man will be happiest. Simple. A gross miscalculation of human nature? Yes. But still, escapism.

Not MTV's Jersey Shore whose characters are so awful and unlikable they would make you angry if you didn't feel that in their stupidity they were also being taken advantage of. A show featuring people with obvious learning and developmental problems being fed alcohol until they take their clothes off, or act in erratic and dangerous ways is exploitative and makes for a repulsive viewing experience. One we shouldn't want to watch.

These are people that should, given behavioral evidence, be placed in government programs teaching them life skills, in counseling, in summer school for God's sake. But instead, they are given their own television program, which shows them to be an almost unimaginably base simian subspecies who have actively rejected their own inner lives for the benefit of the MTV brand and are concerned with only the survival of their own television personas which seem to rely heavily on humping one another in hot tubs, Daisy Dukes (either wearing or awkwardly and self-consciously removing) and aerosol hairspray.

At what point did the producers of this show decide to turn their backs so fully on imaginative programming and at what point did the public decide they enjoyed being condescended to with such offensive lack of imagination?