Tuesday, May 22 , 2018, 1:06 am | Fair 56º


She Said, Z Said: The TV Reality Is There’s No Escape

Television lineup just goes to show you that we may have to get with the program

Z: I was unreasonably happy to see that the Olympics crushed American Idol in the ratings last week — the first time American Idol’s ever lost to anything.

She: Not a big reality TV fan, are we?

Z: I tried it once. Then I jabbed a pencil in my eye to see if I could erase the images from my retina.

She: I know. The only time I’ve even remotely enjoyed watching The Bachelor was with a big group of friends and a pitcher full of cosmos.

Z: I think that would be the perfect reality TV show — a bunch of people getting drunk and watching reality TV shows.

She: Even with a group of friends I still felt a little dirty afterward. But a lot of our friends like reality TV — even some of our friends who we used to have some respect for.

Z: It kills me.

She: And let’s face it, we’re not exactly like our friends C & P with the “Kill Your TV” bumper sticker on our minivan. Oh, my God, I actually sound rational about this. The truth is my heart starts thumping too quickly and I feel my brain’s gray matter transform into a gelatinous oozy substance every time I accidentally flip the channel past one of those shows.

Z: She who worships at the altar of Gossip Girl and Grey’s Anatomy should not cast the first stone. Or rose. Or torch. Or whatever they cast on those shows.

She: I know. I’d lose all of my intellectual street cred if my DVR list ever became public — if I actually had any. But I can guarantee you there are no reality shows on there.

Z: You talk big, but you do have a weakness for Food Network fare that’s not exactly winning writing awards.

She: Does Iron Chef count? Having to make a five-course meal in one hour using a secret ingredient seems much closer to reality than competing for money by surviving living with a bunch of lunatics on an island or competing for a husband by surviving living with a bunch of lunatics in a McMansion in the valley.

Z: Time magazine actually came out with an article praising reality TV this week as some sort of distinctly American artifact. They made it sound like a good thing. That’s when I jabbed Time magazine into my eye, to see if I could erase the image from my retina.

She: And the L.A. Times had a front-page article and a Calendar section article about the Kardashian sisters — on the same day!

Z: It curls my pit hair me that I even know who they are.

She: Do you think it’s us? Why haven’t we gotten on the boat with this thing? Are we really that snobby and elitist?

Z: I think that as writers, we take it personally. Reality TV takes up TV real estate, which means fewer scripted programs, which means less work for writers.

She: Uh ... you wrote one crappy TV movie about a dog. I don’t think you’ve exactly been put out of work by Jersey Shore.

Z: No, but it’s the idea that I could have been. And, it’s a solidarity thing. Go writers! And, really, I just like scripted fare a lot more.

She: The funny thing is that I think a lot of reality shows actually have writers on them. They just call them something else so the writers can’t join the union, but the reality is, so-called reality shows have writers.

Z: Loser writers. I mean, how many different ways can you write, “Rip her top off!”

She: Judging by the number of reality shows on the air, about a million.

Z: Huh. Do you think they’d hire a guy who has written one crappy TV movie about a dog?

She: Yes, dear.

— Tell She and Z what you think by e-mailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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