Blog Post Week 13

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Through the process of this week's articles and group discussion I've come to realize the many flaws in television shows that feature regular, every day Americans in situations where the show helps them out. While the premise of the show such as "The Biggest Loser" or "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" is fantastic, people getting help sounds like a good way to spend airtime, but in reality, the ways the shows are set up are practically exploitative towards the people being helped in the show. There isn't a 100% guarantee that those on the shows will reap the benefits of having life changes stick with them for the rest of their lives. Many times after the show is finished, the aftermath of getting a brand new home or another chance at being healthy again doesn't necessarily secure the idea that that person can keep up with the bills or the extremely healthy lifestyle they adopted while on a weight loss show. Laura Ouellette and James Hay's article really helped me in understanding a little bit more about the ways people can govern themselves and create what it means to be a 'good citizen'. The article as well as today's discussion made me realize even more how versions of the 'good citizen' can change constantly depending on what citizens are consuming as well as how they reinvent the term for themselves.

2 Comments

Great analysis of the aftermath of these reality "makeover" television shows. In my post, I also talked about Extreme Makeover, and how the television show doesn't always bring the best results in the long run for the family being benefited. What America doesn't see is the updates the family needs to make to actually have the house suit them, the property taxes, bills, and more! As for Biggest Loser, the rate of weight gain is very high after the show for the contestants. They learn how to lose weight when that basically is their life, with personal trainers, fresh and low-fats foods at their finger tips, and an overall support system. However, once they return home, there is not gym and healthy foods right in their home, and they now have to work, take care of a family, and have the added stress of life returned. A better technique for successful weight loss would be to teach them in a "real world" setting at home. The results might come slower, but the success rate of keeping it off and strategies learned would be much more permanent.

Both of you brought up a great point in that we dont necessarily see the behind the scenes work that happens in extreme makeover and all the corners that are being cut that dont actually make it as possible as it seems to stay healthy, or stick with the bills, etc. Also for other intervention shows like the dog whisperer and clean house the habits apparently come back just as fast as they were"reformed" and nothing actually changes for the long run. I think Oullete and Hays would both point out that that is a flaw to this idea. They would suggest that it is the persons desire and drive to change that actually allows people to be self governed, as opposed to these shows by themselves helping to do it. Morgen also the idea of how what is means to be a good citizen changing over time i think was a really interesting thing to point out, it seemed obvious once I really thought about it but being a good citizen really does change depending on consuming habits.

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This page contains a single entry by MorgenS published on April 24, 2013 7:24 PM.

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