When John Logie Baird and Philo Farnsworth invented television, they probably thought they were bequeathing to the world a noble enterprise that would inform and entertain in equal measure. The BBC’s policy was exactly that – to inform and entertain – so much so that it was written down in their founding documents.
They didn’t account for Jersey Shore and its many derivatives, or Big Brother. Or Naked Jungle. But here we are reader. We’ve drunk the magic potion. We’ve gone through the looking glass. And we’re tripping badly on a diet of terrible television that has no point, no rhyme or reason, and does nothing but make us feel bloated and sick. Yes, dumb tv shows are more bad for you than a fast food binge.
In many ways it’s our own fault. Everyone wants a balanced diet. For all the television roughage and lettuce you know you should have, there needs to be a veritable deep-fried Big Mac to make up for that. Television executives know that, and started sprinkling our TV diet with some more unhealthy shows to balance out the quinoa salads we were being fed on PBS.
But now, like an obese child who can’t stop shoving candy into his mouth, we’re overrun with televisual pink slime. It’s dross. It’s high-fat, high-salt, high-sugar stuff which was meant to be the antidote to the boring stuff, but now it makes up the majority of our diet. They’re ridiculous and they’re pointless, but we lap them up all the same, rotting our brains and bulging our bellies.
Naked Jungle (2000)
I’m of the firm belief that the lowest point in humanity was ‘Naked Jungle’. There isn’t a single thing anyone can say to dissuade me from this opinion. Humanity hit a low right here. The show was broadcast on Channel 5 (at the time mainly known for showing late night softcore German pornography) and even then it was considered downmarket for the channel. It was hosted by Keith Chegwin, who is the British equivalent of a genital sore. He’s there on the right in the hat.
Oh, by the way, you could see his genitals. Because the whole show was carried out in the nude. It involved obstacle courses, which is of course the best way to view the human body, jiggling in all its glory. But it gets worse. OH IT GETS WORSE. The set – the set, ladies and gentlemen – was second-hand. In fact, it was shared.
With a children’s TV show.
That’s right. Nudists rubbing their lithe bodies all over a television set used during the daytime by primary school children.
Jersey Shore (2009)
‘Jersey Shore’, of course, is the world’s second-worst show. There is a serious argument to be made that the likes of Snooki and The Situation should be rounded up and shot into space without a return rocket, but nooooooooooooooo. Instead, MTV decided to put them on television so we could all laugh at them.
And laugh we did – initially. But then, just like how when you have your first six Chicken McNuggets it tastes great but by the fiftieth, you can taste the feet, it became sour and disgusting. Before you know it, you’re projectile vomiting all over the car and it faintly tastes of barbeque sauce.
Geordie Shore (2011)
But WAIT A SECOND. You think that ‘Jersey Shore’ is boring and dull? Well how about a derivative version of that based in the UK? It’s as if you break down McNuggets into a blender, then add some chemicals to the paste. It’s not even food anymore. It’s simply something to shove in your mouth to produce some saliva from your glands.
These people are empty shells of humans. They’re like the hollow chocolate bunnies you get at Easter, hoping that there’s going to be some nice candy inside. Then you open it up and it’s completely empty.
I’ve had enough of this type of TV. Sure, I ingested it at first. I even thought it was a little bit tasty. But now I’ve got the television shits, and I want to get off this toilet bowl and watch some wildlife shows. Let me see a lion killing a zebra instead of two incredibly dumb people writhing around in underwear. Please.
This is a call to all programme makers out there. We’ve had enough. You can do so much better. Please. Please do so much better before I end up braindead and suffering from a stroke caused by too many televised satfats. I don’t want to die young.