1. The Death Of Real Life

    In the documentary America in Primetime, which I wrote about last week, everyone happily reports that TV has come a long way from its 1950s origins, which were “fake,” “unrealistic,” and “out of touch” with the way things really are. With the way things really were. Every program ended with some tidy conclusion, they say. Some epiphanal or redemptive moment. But today, every obedient, calculating, opportunistic, divisive, fame-hungry, media savvy Reality TV contestant sums up their so-called “meaningful” and “life-changing” experience on TV with: “I’ve learned so much and I am so much stronger because of this.” It didn’t take 50 years for TV to catch up with reality. It took 50 years for Americans to completely lose touch with reality. Before TV was not like real people, but now real people are not like real people. They are like TV. This is a much bigger problem.

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