Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Reflections on the New Season of the Real World

Ahhhh, ho-ra, ho-ra, let the church bells ring out loud because finally there's a new season of the Real World upon us. MTV's pan-generational reality behemoth is back and it's time for the bullshit trash culture scribes to weigh in with their two cents.

The first point one has to ponder with all this is: just how much of an influence does the show have anymore? What with all the "fly on the wall" shows out there, has it gotten lost in the mix? Has it become just another dumb reality show, as opposed to it's old position as THE dumb reality show? Do young people still define themselves by this show? Is it still a primer for the adolescent set as to what early 20's life is like? Do they still know why it's important?

Most of the hipsterati still seem to be into it, "Top Model" might just edge it out, but all those beloved teenage memories of weekend Real World marathon's still loom large in their pop cultural psyche. The show, much like "The Simpsons" has been a part of their life for a long time and most couldn't really imagine a world in which it didn't exist. Yeah, it's safe to say the show is still as crucial as it ever was.

So let's get into this specific season. Aaaaaah, these kids know their roles well. The casting people did an excellent job putting together the seven roommates year. These kids are not so much "living their real lifes" as they are just doing their damnest to re-enact every previous season of the show within as little time as possible. Three episodes in and you've already got all the classic "Real World" themes(most of which happened within first episode): massive alcoholism; bold and blatent underage drinking; roommate hook-ups; massive douche-baggery; fights; and guys wearing South Africa shirts(February is WHAT History Month?). Unfortunetly, it appears as if they have phased out the gay character, that is, unless you count the two girls making out in the hot tub. Of course, I guess they don't HAVE TO have a gay guy every season, esepcially after they had two last season.

For the most part this season has so far just been a redux, Vegas: Part 5, or something like that. All familiar territory. They've managed to resurrect the "girl who is still a virgin at an unusually old age" character, so that's something. I thought those types were left in the dust when the sluttly-ness factor was upped. Speaking of such things, perhaps the most significant difference this season is the fact that THIS time around the meaningless hook ups are perhaps NOT so meaningless. Yeah, when Trishelle and uhhh Brad(aren't all the meathead guys named Brad?) hooked up early on in the Vegas season they explicitly said it was just pointless sex sans any deeper feelings. It was unhealthy, sad and led to a lot of melodrama, but at least they were honest about it. On this latest season though, Brad and the Milwaukee cum slut girl, they actually seem to think they have real feelings for each other.

How bizarre. Not only do kids nowadays not know the multitude of reasons of why it's bad to hook up with your roommates(I blame this on "Love Line" not being on MTV anymore) but they've deluded themselves into thinking that casual sex somehow equals a "real relationship". Has the internet so crippled the social skills of this latest generation that THIS is what things have come to? Do guys actually CALL girls after one night stands now? Are we so disconnected that ANY connection, even a physical one, is considered significant now?

Some might say I'm being too cynical with all of this, they might site all those romantic old french films where people instantly fall in love and yadda yadda. "Some times these types of things do happen. You just have to keep your heart open." It goes without saying, but most all of those type of films are just immature, idealized stories about relationships that burn intensly for a while and then flicker out pretty quickly, usually because of the mental illness of the female character. These movies are more about "crazy love" than real, long term emotional intimacy.

Time will just have to tell as to whether the relationship between MCSG(the Milwaukee Cum Slut Girl) and Brad will develop into anything real. My bet is she fucks someone other dude within the next three episodes...

Moral of the Story:The cast of "The Real World" has ALWAYS been populated by little other than idiotic psychos, but at least they're INTERESTING douche-tards..

PS:Real World drinking game:Anytime someone on the show makes a total douchebag comment, take a drink

PPS:"Top Model" drinking game:every time someone cries, take a drink