General Question

mee_ouch's avatar

What price humiliation?

Asked by mee_ouch (656points) August 28th, 2008

Regarding the current spate of “Talk/trash T.V.”.....i.e., Court T.V. (all the ‘Judge’-titled shows), Maury, Springer…...
Are the ‘guests’ on such shows lacking in morals, modesty, myopia or money? Please enlighten me.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

28 Answers

augustlan's avatar


mee_ouch's avatar

One would think….But aug., can you honestly believe that these people would subject themselves to public humiliation without some type of compensation….aside from a night in the city?

JackAdams's avatar

Many of the guests on such shows are professional actors, who are actually hired by the shows to appear and pretend to be the kind of person that the host wants on the show, to create controversy and get high ratings.

Jerry Springer was a master, at engineering that, and the majority of those in the studio audience had no idea.

Such was pioneered by Phil Donahue.

August 29, 2008, 12:59 AM EDT

augustlan's avatar

Even assuming they are actors…would you take that kind of a job? I certainly wouldn’t. I mean, acting in herpes and “feminine hygiene” commercials would be bad enough, but why would any intelligent human being take a “job” that requires such base humiliation? How would such an actor ever be taken seriously after that? I do believe that some of these people are just who they appear to be, and have so little of value in their lives that a shot at being on “the T.V.” seems like just the ticket.

JackAdams's avatar

The “average” Sreen Actors Guild member (I am one, BTW) earned less than $1,000 from acting, in 2007.

“And all the stars, who never were, are parking cars and pumping gas.”

When you love acting and are hoping/praying for a job in that profession (and starving) you’ll take almost anything offered to you, if you believe that it will get you noticed and additional work.

August 29, 2008, 1:12 AM EDT

mee_ouch's avatar

JackA., ...
I’d assumed as such. Regardless of credentials, how can anyone fill their ‘15 minutes’ with such an embarassing display of outright idiocy? Not withstanding the fact that they have chosen to humiliate themselves, but they build their portfolios by purposely mocking one demographic…..the American south. It’s shameful.
Nice legacy….

JackAdams's avatar

Perhaps it might help, to look at it from the actor’s viewpoint.

It is difficult for an actor to fool an audience into “suspending disbelief,” if the audience members know that it is an actor they are watching.

But in a situation where the audience doesn’t know that, the actor has a much more difficult task, in that s/he must create and maintain an illusion, without the audience ever knowing that they have in fact been “tricked.”

The most difficult acting in the world is called “reality acting,” where if the audience discovers you are acting, YOU DIE.

That is what some undercover police officers do, every day.

August 29, 2008, 1:27 AM EDT

kevbo's avatar

There’s a great This American Life episode about Springer’s life and career trajectory. He basically went from a bleeding heart, community organizing liberal (and mayor) to his current fuck all WhoreTV pioneering, and the kicker is that there’s no real lesson to be learned from the transition.

@jack, that reminds me of a story I heard about Samuel L. Jackson that he didn’t care what roles he got, he just wanted to act

@mee, great point about the southern stereotypes.

JackAdams's avatar

Samuel L. Jackson may have had that attitude at one time, until he got famous and could command huge paychecks for challenging roles.

Keep in mind that Sylvester Stallone acted in a porno movie, prior to getting into mainstream movies, and so did Traci Lords

August 29, 2008, 1:37 AM EDT

mee_ouch's avatar

keybo, I’ve seen this episode and short of reinventing himself (gawd, I loathe that word), would it be fair to call him what he truly is…....a PIMP!

wildflower's avatar

Nevermind the participants, they’re either actors or the modern day equivalent if a traveling freak show, I’d worry about the mind-set of anyone watching it for other than comedy value.

Bri_L's avatar

Definitely modesty. There has to be a reason. Something they don’t have that they want. Money, attention, a misguided believe in the show or what it will do for them after they are on it.

eeerrrahhhhh's avatar

The freak show plays an essential role in our sad society, so they are just filling that role. It may be sad how popular it became, but is it really any worse than reality TV? I mean all those Big Brothers and Survivors and So you want to dance shows are just as bad. The actors on talk shows fool us into believing they are real and the contestants on the reality tv shows fool us into believing they might have talent. I think I will stick with science fiction – at least there they are trying to fool us into believing we are intelligent enough to survive for a while longer..

P.s. Snakes on a Plane might show that SLJ is still willing to take a role to “act”

SeekerSeekiing's avatar

No, one can fool us if we don’t let them. No one can fool us on these shows if we don’t watch them. No one would be on these shows if no one watched them…

We will never fully understand the motivation of another, but I suspect the ‘reasons’ are more complicated than we know…

JackAdams's avatar

Human beings are easily tricked, fooled, and conned.

“There’s a sucker born, every minute.”

Phineas T. Barnum (1810–91) American Showman

August 29, 2008, 9:48 AM EDT

trudacia's avatar

These people are desperate for attention, positive or negative. Did you ever see those horrible children on Maury? The ones that have sex/get pregnant, etc at 15? There was one young girl who sold her body for a cheeseburger! This girl clearly gets no love at home….

JackAdams's avatar

Once again, there is a remote possibility that SOME of those kids on those shows may be professional actresses, doing what is called in the trades as, a “public auditon.”

It happens more frequently than you might imagine.

August 29, 2008, 10:41 AM EDT

cwilbur's avatar

Presumably you have a citation or other documentation you can point us at to substantiate your claim, JackAdams?

JackAdams's avatar

I don’t have to.

It is up to the ACCUSER to prove the allegation(s).

The ACCUSED doesn’t need to “prove” anything.

If you believe I am a LIAR, please PROVE your allegation(s) to the rest of us, or don’t make them.

August 29, 2008, 3:09 PM EDT

cwilbur's avatar

Actually, it works the other way—the extraordinary claims require the extraordinary proof.

The daytime talk shows present their guests as average people. If you want to claim that this is not the case, you need to present evidence—otherwise you’re just yet another nut on the Internet.

Your reluctance to produce any evidence damns you a lot more than anything I could say does. I suggest that you put up or shut up.

JackAdams's avatar

You have tossed down the first gauntlet; you have made the first accusation and publicly accused another person of lying.

If you want to PROVE to the entire collective that I am indeed some kind of LIAR who does not know what he is talking about, then you are at liberty to do so.

The onus is on you, the troublemaker, to prove your derogatory remarks are indeed factual, just as the onus would be on a Prosecutor, to prove his remarks were true, in a court of law.

You are at liberty to believe whatever you wish to believe, and even if I were to quote “chapter & verse,” you would still not be convinced; you would continue with your inane insults and false accusations.

The fact is, I don’t care whether you believe me, or not.

My statements remain factual and truthful, whether or not you accept them as such, and your opinion(s) of them (and the person stating them) are irrelevant.

Truth remains truth and fact remains fact, regardless.

Now, please return to your hiding place under the Bridge.

August 29, 2008, 8:03 PM EDT

Tantigirl's avatar

@JackAdams – Do you think that Traci Lords has ever really been considered as a true actor? Due to her porn career, I seriously doubt that she ever could be.

JackAdams's avatar

What I think about Traci Lords is unimportant.

She is now a successful mainstream actress, and appeared in the Stephen King movie, The Tommyknockers

August 29, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT

Tantigirl's avatar

I didn’t say what you thought was important. I asked for your opinion. I guess successful means different things to different people. I’ve seen her acting in shows, and I didn’t really think she was all that good, in my very inexpert opinion.

trudacia's avatar

She was good in Cry Baby people.

JackAdams's avatar

@Tantigirl: I agree with you, regarding her acting.

I prefer to keep my opinions to myself, because they matter only to me, and no one else has any real interest in them, except to hack them apart with insults, which no one needs.

I trust you understand my attitude, and will respect my decision.

Thank you.

August 29, 2008, 9:49 PM EDT

mee_ouch's avatar

Great debate people…..Please though, let us not succumb to the ranks of the misanthropes with which we’re discussing.

Tantigirl's avatar

@JackAdams – I do understand, and I do respect your decision.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther