How Real Are Reality Shows Essay Examples

If a person turns their TV on in almost any country, most likely the channels will be filled with different kinds of reality shows. This is no surprise, because this kind of TV program has become amazingly popular in recent decades. Such shows are entertaining and addicting to watch, as they focus not on fictional characters, but on real people put in different contexts and situations. However, regardless of the entertainment it delivers, a question may arise: is there something more to watching reality shows than being entertained?

When evaluating reality shows, several factors should be taken in consideration. The “reality” that is usually shown on TV is not the same objective reality we live in. Every reality show has a core idea to which the behavior of its contestants is subdued—though the participants are not obliged to act one way or another, they still follow the script, and their behavior is then evaluated (by audiences, other show participants, moderators, and so on). “All TV shows, not just reality shows, help construct scenarios that demonstrate how some behaviors will be rewarded or punished. The concern is that frequent viewers of these shows will learn these behaviors, see them as desirable and then model them in the actual real world,” says Dr. Brad Gorham, chair of the Communications Department at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University (USA Today).

If we try to figure out what is so entertaining about reality shows, we can reach this conclusion: it is the humiliation and mocking of the contestants that makes people amused. Indeed, if we analyze such a popular show as American Idol, we will easily notice many episodes of this program are dedicated to making fun of the contestants, whose performing abilities were lower compared to other participants (which does not necessarily mean they are deprived of talent, or are worse in any other way). This can create an audience (which mostly consists of teenagers) that rate and assess people based on their qualities, such as appearance or skills; this model forms a solid basis for discriminating behavior and a lack of tolerance (eHow).

Yet another negative effect of reality shows is a distorted depiction of relationships between genders. Many reality shows address sexual themes, or depict relationships based on scandals and fights. Relationships on TV contrast real life ones: they tend to be less stable and harmonious, they are sexualized, and usually aimed at bringing more popularity to those engaged in them. Since it is difficult to control the access of underaged audiences to TV programs, children and teenagers are exposed to the risks of developing a wrong perception of relationships based on what they see on TV, which is unacceptable (

Even though reality shows have become extremely popular, it does not mean they are beneficial for their audiences. Rather often, these shows display role models that are based on semi-artificial circumstances and environments. However, these models are still seen as desirable by viewers. In addition, humiliation, which makes the basis of the entertainment component in the majority of reality shows, teaches audiences to rate people based on their physical or psychological qualities, which can create a solid basis for discriminating behavior. In addition, considering sexualized and simplified depictions of romantic relationships in reality shows, one can claim these TV programs can cause perverted perceptions of relationships between different genders in the minds of teenagers, who usually make up the target audience of the majority of reality shows.


Fahner, Micki. “The Real Effects of Reality TV.” USA Today College. N.p., 18 Apr. 2012. Web. 08 Sept. 2014.

“Negative Effects of Reality Shows.” EHow. Demand Media, 07 Oct. 2010. Web. 08 Sept. 2014.

LeBoue, Sarah. “Reality Tv May Cause Deviant Sexual Behavior Among Teens.” N.p., 01 Sept. 2014. Web. 08 Sept. 2014.

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Guys, I really need a thesis statement and my specific arguement
is that the show which is shown to us all manipulated and edited.
Please please guys help me out.

I always begin generally and then get specific. For example, here I would begin by explaining what reality is, what it's supposed to be in the context of TV, and what it really is in that same context. This allows you some freedom to maneuver in your arguments, and to move along a continuum of ideas and reality show types.

Yeah, I agree with you stephen. In my research paper I should refer to atleast two books regarding my essay.
Can you suggest me any??

Unfortunately no. I am not a fan of reality TV at all. But I would suggest that you do an online search for references to it, especially the psychology of reality and then the commercialization of it. \That might be a good place to begin.

I've written thesis...please comment on it and correct my grammar mistakes as well....

These days every TV channel has reality shows, everyone seems to be really crazy about them and even the sponsors are ready to pour in money. Contestants of the show are made to perform dangerous stunts and do all sorts of absurd things in order to commercialize the show. Celebrities are frequently invited on the show to increase the TRP ratings of the show.

But the bitter truth is that there is very little reality in the reality shows. In fact, 75% of the show is manipulated and edited. The show has a framed script already,Directors,Producers and Technicians guiding the contestant in a planned manner. Judges are hired,they often pretend to get emotional and angry and leave the show abruptly but they appear in the next episode. All the decisions and results are biased and pre-determined. Shockingly,even tthe audiences of the shows are fake.

In this paper, I will explore the extent of reality in reality shows and examine what they say about us a society.

thats it...plz comment...
what my sir said is to focus on one particular reality show...and do research on it....
what should i do??
if you can come up with better thesis and are welcome...plzz help me out...friends..

But the bitter truth is that there is very little reality in the reality shows. In fact, 75% of the show is manipulated and edited.

You will need to document this, as in "According to.." whatever poll or research it was.

I think that one show or one type of show is appropriate, certainly. Easier to manage, too.

Don't worry about grammar yet. That can be fixed later. Right now, just get the main ideas and facts straight.

In this paper, I will explore the extent of reality in reality shows and examine what they say about us a society.

This is pretty broad. You might need to narrow it, like some reality shows . That way they don't get all dumped in together and you will be able to support your arguments better.

You might also want to explore the notion that the concept of "reality television" is essentially an oxymoron. People having to live together isolated on an island off of which one gets voted each week is a contrived, unrealistic situation. The same could be said, with a bit of variation, about most if not all other reality television shows. And even if someone put together a reality television show without some horribly contrived scenario or contest at its root, do you really think anyone acts the way they do in real life when they know they are on film? A documentary would be much closer to what reality television would seem to mean, based on the words that compose the term, than the shows to which the name actually applies. What then does it mean to talk about "reality television" in the first place?

Reality shows - how to start this essay?

pls help fellows am having an essay about reality shows help pls

what do you need actually? strong points or what?

Yes, start by Googling the term "reality shows" and "reality television" so that you can get some ideas.

Remember, start every paragraph with a clear topic sentence that tells the main idea of the paragraph.

You might have 3 ideas to express about reality shows. If so, write 3 body paragraphs. Then, go back and write an introduction paragraph at the beginning.


I just wrote an essay about reality show. Make sure you could find some good and bad reality show to support your ideas. Good luck.

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