Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Say what you want about Fox....
but it has provided us with some amazing cultural gems. As a news network, obviously, it is a complete joke, but from an entertainment perspective it's hard to deny their uniquely lowbrow contributions.
Take the Fox Reality Network, for example: an entire cable station that just plays reality television, 24-7. Look me in the eye and tell me you don't like watching reruns of "When Animals Attack" after a few dozen beers. A network that shows you this has got some balls:
But my favorite program on Fox, which according to my DVR might no longer be recording new episodes (sniffle) is "Battle of the Bods," a show where you can actually feel the Woman's Movement receding as you watch. The premise? Five scantily clad women parade around a stage and a panel of men in a soundproof room rate their bodies. The girls try to guess the men's rankings in a few different categories, such as "Face" and "Breasts." If they guess right, they win a small amount of money. But first, they cattily argue over who has the best ass and the straighter teeth. On national television. What would Gertrude Stein say?
The host, Olivia Lee, is like a D-grade version Cat Deeley of Fox's "So You Think You Can Dance." They are both tall, blond, and have over-the-top Brit accents.
Is Olivia's dress from Forever 21? It wouldn't surprise me, given that "Battle of the Bods" appears to have a production budget of about $.48.
Seriously, the set looks like a sleazy hotel lobby:
Yes, in that photo you are actually seeing adult women in the 21st century comparing ass-cheek cellulite. I have to agree with Slate's Troy Patterson that the show is "innovatively vile." I can't begin to imagine what would motivate anyone to go on this show. It's like negative minutes of fame. Still, perhaps out of my incomprehension over how such a show exists, I have watched many an episode, slack-jawed.
On the other hand, "So You Think You Can Dance" is a great piece of reality television. I love its vaguely Eastern-European vibe -- there's something distinctly foreign about the show's aesthetic.
And who wouldn't want to be drunk at a wedding with Nigel and Mia Michaels? Nigel would be the sleazy uncle who makes inappropriate comments about how nicely the bride has developed, and Mia would wear a crazy miniature hat and hoard passed appetizers in her purse.
Personally, I'd like Fox to develop a show hosted by these two:
Rainbows would melt.
The best part about being on a reality show, though, has to be the exit montage. It must be so great to watch a video chronicling how awesome you are. I wish at the end of every week, Ryan Seacrest and Cat Deeley would show up in my bedroom and say, "Well, Katie, it's the end of the week for you, but let's a take a last look at some of your best moments."
A song by Chris Daughtry would play and highlights from my week would flash across a spontaneously-materialized gigantic plasma screen: me getting coffee from my local guy in Greenpoint, arguing with a cab driver when I try to pay with a credit card, looking winsome as I play my next Scrabulous move on Facebook.
So in conclusion, I'm glad that Fox exists, despite the misinformation they spread about Iraq Hussein Osama. As long as you've seen "Outfoxed" (and if you haven't, Netflix it now), you can feel fine about watching the upcoming "Real Stories of the Highway Patrol" marathon (check your local listings for exact times).