The Ugly Behind the Screen of Reality TV

While not strictly related to the Duggars, this is some excellent information about "reality" TV.  For this one post other shows may be discussed, but please try to keep most of the discussion related to how it applies to the Duggars.

Reality TV.

More Behind the Scenes

54 comments:

Nancy Ann said...

I agree that the best way to stop all this "reality show" nonsense is for people to quit watching. But that isn't going to happen. The next best thing is to make it cost prohibitive for the networks to produce the shows. How awful that workers are being treated in such an unfair manner. The Duggars are not concerned at all about social justice, so they probably would just shrug their shoulders and say that if it is so bad people should not take the jobs. The idea that the Duggar's show is scripted does not surprise me in the least. They are not good actors and it shows that they are acting out prescribed scenarios. (How would they know what good acting is, anyway?) Like the guys on Duck Dynasty, the Duggars are promoting the ultra right wing political agenda. I am very glad to hear that the industry itself is attempting to crack down on these shows. The Writer's Guild is powerful and takes their profession seriously. The fact that Duck Dynasty has used old episodes of The Beverly Hillbillies is pretty hilarious, but not to the Guild. This will be interesting to watch.

mythoughtis said...

I think we have all noticed the scripted scenes in the Duggar show. Jim Bob, in particular, seems very wooden in these, and unable to 'act' in any convincing manner. Recent examples of this: The scene in which Derick asks for permission to marry Jill, the scene in which Ben asks Jessa to 'court him'.

Anonymous said...

The scenes where...we saw the Duggars arrive a day early to Josh and Anna's and she had to cook the holiday meal on short notice all by herself.
...same episode with Josh painting the downstairs guest room on one or two days notice. Seriously, who does any of that and not expect it to turn into an episode of I Love Lucy?
...the episode where Jill goes to her parent's room to ask if they can fly across the globe to Nepal to meet Derick, when she'd just walked out of the girls' room and the countdown calendar beside her bed clearly said " 9 days til I meet Derick". All scripted, all planned.

Anonymous said...

at end of the day the duggars are no better than the kardashians.

Miz Kizzle said...

Reality TV is the 21st-century version of the travelling sideshow. See the world's smallest married couple! Gape at the sassy hillbilly child beauty pageant queen! Marvel at the very religious people who have 19 children! Gasp in shock at the filthy homes of hoarders!
Nothing new or interesting here, just another freak show.

glass dishes said...

So true anony 11:20am. But shuuu ...don't say that to loud as The Duggars think they live higher than ANYBODY else...such morals *ha ha ha* show no knees but when it comes to birthin' babys Let The Cameras Roll In for EVERYBODY to watch. Frankly I do not want to see another baby being born on the toilet...or anywhere else.

Anonymous said...

What makes me angry is the duggar are so about modesty but when it comes to money they can give birth in fron of a camera for the whole crew to see everything.

Refugee said...

But are the Duggars really modest as the Bible define modesty? Somehow I don't think the Biblical definition of modesty would at all include the Duggar women, especially with the way the young girls like Jess dress now, and the hooker makeup she wears.

Alberta Rose said...

Interesting they zeroed in on Duck Dynasty but not Gene Simmons Family Jewels. That was an extremely scripted show. It was also moderate to the left. Cake Boss is another scripted show, heavily Catholic Italian yet never a peep about how contrived it is. Again, moderate to left. Little People, Big World is another one that that is moderate when it comes to politics and religion, no condemnation. Seems like if you are right wing you're fair game, but if you're moderate, you get a pass. "A Minor Consideration" encourages 19 Kids and Counting to be picked on, but not Sister Wives, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, or Little People Big World. The first one right wing, Christian. The other three are moderate to left wing.

Rudy Tecat said...

I think if the show was scripted, JB would practice his lines and maybe sound a little more intelligent. But, I have no doubt there's someone telling them what to do and where to go.

sandi said...

I think of Fundamentalism as a cult,and nothing less.I wish they would leave all other words and denominations out of assoc. with it,as they follow Gothard,(the false Christ),and ATI/IBLP,none of which have to do with real religion and the bible.They are fair game,imo.

KathyR said...

Interesting that this comes up. There's a new book out about Kate Gosselin on Amazon. How she Fooled the World. Talks about using faith and religion on an as needed basis at churches ($$$). When that dried up there was no more use for those groups. She closed on a million dolllar house while begging for help. Lots of people believed her sob stories. I wonder if people just want so badly to have something to cheer for that we get pulled into these shows.

Beth Anne said...

Alberta Rose, I do think that, in a broader context, Christians are fair game in many respects. Relative to the entire "criticizing reality T.V.," however, there is a HUGE amount of negative press out there about pretty much every show under the sun, from "19 Kids and Counting" to "The Bachelor" to "Keeping up with the Kardashians." Maybe this article zeroed in on certain shows, but there's a ton more articles out there that focus on other shows. Even former participants/actors in many of these series have come clean about how scripted everything is.

Also, A Minor Consideration is not an initiative I believe is aimed at "picking on" shows or people. I think the people behind that initiative are truly, truly concerned about the affects of children being on reality T.V. In terms of your claim that they are picking on the Duggars, they have also been highly critical of the Gosselin parents, particularly Kate, who is desperate for her show to continue. I don't think their criticism has anything to do, really, with the Christianity aspect.

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone "picks on" this family because they are Christian. They are commented on because they want everyone to "look at them and do as they do". The other shows, moderate or trashy don't preach their ways to the audience and "encourage' to be like them..that's the difference IMO.

Rudy Tecat said...

I've never heard the Cake Boss, Honey Boo-Boo, The Little Couple, Little People Big World, etc say such controversial things as the Duck guy did...that's why he was skewered, not because he was a Christian. If I remember correctly, it wasn't even anything to do with religion, but with race that got him into trouble. If Gene Simmons had said the same thing, there would have been a movement to get him off tv, too.

Anonymous said...

The Duggars actually call their show a ministry. They actively want to convert people to their view and way of life. Since I think they're in a cult (Gothard/ATI) that is not true Christianity I resent that.

Nancy Ann said...

Like Anonymous (7/10 at 7:50 AM) said, the worst thing for me is that the Duggars honestly believe that they are called to minister through their TV show. Yes, indeed, they are part of a cult. This testimonial just came out from a woman who has finally gained the courage to tell her story of her time with Bill Gothard. It is long, but well worth the read to understand what the Duggars are promoting. How on earth can Bill Gothard not be in prison already? How has IBLP/ATI not been sued? How can TLC support this, even indirectly?

http://redemptionpictures.com/2014/07/08/dear-bill-gothard/

Judy said...

You have to be awfully narcissistic to believe that you must put your family on television, the family that doesn't even watch it, to teach people how to be -- and then take thousands of dollars for it.

Anonymous said...

Albeta Rose, the Duck Dynasty thing was criticized because of a different issue, not because of Christianity. I am Christian, but I would be very offended if someone associated me with Duck Dynasty's views. Also if you watch Little People Big World, I would say they are more moderate-right. Sister Wives also garners its own set of criticism. If you're looking for criticism, it's very easily accessed in other online forums.

I think what the main issue with 19KaC is that they use the show as their ministry. The family themselves also tend to push their political agenda and religion on the show itself, whereas the other shows mentioned are focused on different aspects, such as CAKE decorating (not about being Catholic on Cake Boss), Here Comes Honey Boo Boo (um, couponing and doing "funny" things). I don't think being liberal vs. conservative is all about getting a "pass" on criticism, it's how the people present themselves both on television and public forums, and especially in politics, government policies actually *affect* people's real lives (such as banning gay marriage, etc.)

auntliddy said...

Litle people, big workd family belong to ultra right wing church.

auntliddy said...

I dont mind hearing anyone's opinion about anything on a reality show. You then know where they stand and can continue watching or not. Now if show is scripted- like some duggar scenes- then the writers shld be getting paid fair wages isnt that the christian, not to mention ethical way to do things?

Anonymous said...

Years ago, I happened to be at the Roloff farm during pumpkin season (checking it out for a field trip for kids in another town) when they were filming scenes for Matt's birthday. Jacob, about nine at the time, was riding his bike with some friends and the film crew called him over and instructed him to stand by the back of the bakery delivery van that had just pulled up to deliver a huge cake. Jacob was "directed" to look at the van while the driver got out, opened the back of the van, and took out the enormous cake while the whole scene was filmed. I saw all this because I had walked over to the camera crew purely out of curiosity. After that, I've never had a doubt that reality shows are more than likely, if not scripted, highly structured.

BTW, I was impressed that the huge Roloff cake purchased from one of the best bakeries in the area, was brought in for the hundreds of families and kids who were at their farm that day getting pumpkins for Halloween. I was impressed by Matt's dad and mom who were gracious and spoke to everyone as they helped serve the huge throng of guests and I did NOT see that part being filmed. Matt's dad mentioned to me that they loved seeing lots of happy kids running around on their farm, probably a carry over from having three kids, including Matt, with serious health issues as kids. In addition, the kids I mentioned above did go to the Roloff farm for a school field trip and because most of them were very poor, the Roloff's didn't charge anything and let them all pick out free pumpkins.

Somehow, I can't imagine the Duggars doing anything like this without highlighting it on their show as being servants of God. Both are conservative Christian families, yet the Roloffs just seemed more accepting, sincere and generous than the Duggars seem to me to be on TV.

Alberta Rose said...

I focused in on those shows because their children are involved, not because of any viewpoints. No one wrings their hands about the kids on those shows the way some people wring their hands about the way the Duggar kids are being raised. No one says the Valastro kids are being indoctrinated in Catholicism or their parents forcing the Italian way of life on the kids.

Nancy Ann said...

The Roloffs are pretty conservative Christians (sent their kids to private Christian school, etc.) but they are not on TV to promote their church or show others how pure and sinless they are. A person made an interesting comment on Recovering Grace. They said that the Duggars truly believe that God has blessed them with 19 healthy children and given them more money than they need because they are following all the Gothard rules. This is what Gothard and many other similar pastors preach--be righteous and God will bless you. They would never speak against Gothard or quit following the ATI/IBLP rules because they believe that they would fall out of favor with God. And it's all downhill from there. (Unfortunately, I know this because this is the way I was raised and the rest of my family still believes it).

Anonymous said...

Once again, the Roloffs can belong to any church they choose to, and the Valastros can do the same. Their shows don't revolve around a ministry where they are "encouraging others' to believe and live as they do.
However, the Duggars don't do those things. They flaunt their sinless lifestyle and beliefs down the viewers' throats. They have stated that their show is a ministry to do just that. These other two families don't go there. I happen to enjoy seeing the Valastro family activities; they are simply observed, and I have never seen or heard an example of these two shows pushing it on anyone. The Italian/Catholic, northeast culture is just a part of who they are and the Roloffs' don't film themselves worshiping. It is simply about their daily lives. They Duggars should take a lesson from the Roloffs and Valastros in that department. More importantly, these two other families don't take advantage of their kids.

Beth Anne said...

Nancy Ann makes an interesting point regarding the whole "Be righteous and God will bless you" notion. I and many other Christians actually believe in that overall notion, but not in the way that Gothard suggests, in terms of being blessed with "things," whether those things be a quiverful of kids/blessings to show the world how favored you are by God or more money than you need because you waited for your first kiss until your wedding day.

I believe the truest blessing God brings is inner peace and a sense that, no matter what you face in this world or what mistakes you make, God loves you and forgives you and will never abandon you. That is a MUCH different notion of being blessed than "follow these rules and you will get a big house."

And, the Duggars are truly the exception, in terms of their material wealth. So many quiverful/large families struggle to make ends meet, as evidenced by the countless testimonies on Recovering Grace and other websites (as well as Anna's own sister's life), and the Duggars were crammed into a tiny house until TLC came along and paid them to film their lives.

Reality TV Junkie said...

While I do admire the Duggars to an extent as they are respectful, polite, and a lot of other things that a lot of modern day teens/children are not, the admiration stops with the whole Gothard thing. I really do not like how they put Gothard's teachings above Christ's teachings. And about the belief that as long as you are good and follow the rules, God will bless you? I think they need a better understanding of the book of Job. Also, does anyone have specific examples of the Duggars saying they are sinless and better than everybody else?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Beth Anne's comments. Some of these families believe if they tow the God rules, they will have a trouble-free life and a big house as well as go to heaven one day. They seek only the rewards of stating that they love the Lord. It's what's in it for them. Sorry,but yes, God loves you and I believe He loves you more when you live a challenged life, not one lived in a glass cage that has no challenges, decisions or hard times to "work your faith" into better shape.

Anonymous said...

IMO, the only current sin that the Duggars have admitted to is being late for appointments.

Anonymous said...

I have seen Gene Simmons many times on Fox and Friends and to say that he is promoting a left leaning lifestyle is ludicrous. look into his politics.

Anonymous said...

As a fan of the Duggars, it is hard for me to write this, because I support SOME OF their belief, such as: maintaining a strong Christian family, and the girls saving themselves for marriage..(being virgins--not the EXTREME such as holding hands or kissing! That is a little much!)I have several problems with what they are professing as their "personnel standards" for their family. Alot of them are just hypocritical!!
First, the way they dress. they say they dress that way because the Bible mentioned the thigh being "naked." Well the scripture they are referring to is Exodus 28:42 and when that is read as a whole, it is speaking of Aaron going into the temple, and the clothing standards for PRIESTS! That Aaron and his brother and sons should have "linen breeches to cover their nakedness. From the loins even unto the thighs they shall reach . And they shall be upon Aaron and his sons when they come in unto the tabernacle of the congregation.." Second, you cover yourselves, take all T.V., have chaperones present constantly, make the boys cover their eyes in the presence of an "immodestly" dressed woman, all for what? Are you all so INSECURE and WEAK in your faith that you really don't think you can resist temptation? Do your girls really think that they couldn't kiss or hold hands with their boyfriend and not actually have sex? Are they really not that controllable? Yes, men's eyes do wander, God made them that way..It is healthy.. They will NOT GO TO HELL because of that. If they see an attractive girl, and have a sexual thought about her, that is not a sin. They are not married men lusting after another woman. I was engaged for 3 years to my husband- we went on dates (unchaperoned-gasp!!), kissed, held hands, and never once had sex!! We made the promise (long before we even met one another) that we were going to save ourselves for our husband/wife! And you know what, temptation creeps in, and we resisted it..It builds character to conquer Satan! But how can your children know that feeling when they NEVER get confronted with temptation? I hear you talk all the time on the show about "self control," "these guys have to learn self control," well you're doing just the opposite when you scream out, "Nike," and make them put their heads down, or have the girls run up and cover the computer/T.V. screen of an "immodestly" dressed woman. Are they learning any self control? Or are you just TAKING all the temptation and putting in a little box, and locking it away? "Don't look above her knee, that's not modest," "pants on a woman is too sexual, it shows too much of her body.." We don't date, because it's not as serious as courting..Wake up people!!!! When we date, we're doing the exact same thing as you, looking for a prospective wife/husband..Except we do it in a more fun way..It's less "arranged." And we have more control. Duggars, I love what you guys stand for.. But it's the deep down "nitty gritty" that really bothers me..This ATI, Bill Gothard stuff is all just a bunch of garbage. He is not a leader...He doesn't make the rules. I personally follow God's rules/regulations and nowhere in the Bible does it say dancing is a sin, (as a matter of fact, they danced in the Bible) or that skirts is the only "modest" wear, I could go on and on..I believe with freedom of religion completely.. But the more I read, the more I'm afraid that ATI/BLP is what the Duggars are REALLY fanatically into. And that is NOT a religion.

Willow said...

Anonymous on 07/16/2014 at 2:16 p.m. -- Very well said. I couldn't agree with you more. I have often thought that taking away choices and temptations is not the intent of the Bible. I take it that we are supposed to have the free-will and choice to choose God's way on our own. If someone does it for us, it is not the same thing.

BTW, I think the ATI/IBLP deal is supposed to be the "higher standard" on top of their individual religions, am I not right about that? Anyway, I think you hit the nail on the head.

Beth Anne said...

Anonymous at 2:16....you rock. Love your post. I agree JimBob and Michelle are doing their own family a disservice by imposing rules that don't really have anything to do with one's relationship with God. Also, as a parent, I understand the desire to protect your children from harm and try to steer them in the "right" direction. But the Duggars basically take away the opportunity for their children to learn to handle and beat temptation and, let's face it, a variety of basic life situations on their own.

Anonymous said...

anonymous 7/16 @2:16: YES, YES, I, too, agree totally with you.The Duggars are control freaks and totally strangle their children into isolation and submission. The things they think are sinful, are not sinful. I hope that family personally reads this site and realizes that they are way off the mark and are actually hurting their kids not helping them at all...

Anonymous said...

How about the BOYS "saving themselves for marriage!"

hello said...

If Jimboob and Michelle think they are doing such a good job "training" their kids, why don't they trust them to do anything on their own? I don't buy for one minute that their adult children ask to be chaperoned on dates while they are courting, especially when those chaperones can be as young as ten. As adults they are certainly old enough to he held accountable for their own actions. The kids have been brainwashed to think that if they kiss, hug or are alone with someone of the opposite sex it is automatically going to lead to sex. But Jimboob and Michelle see nothing wrong with kissing, hugging, holding hands and even dry humping on a mini golf course while saying-you cant do this yet to their courting kids.

Anonymous said...

So if the girls are required to yell Nike so their brothers turn away from an inappropriately clothed girl who might arouse their sexual desires, why don't the boys yell Adidas when a great looking guy in some skinny jeans is near so the girls aren't faced with physical temptation. Oh, ya, I forgot, girls don't have any physical desires until they get married and then it's just so they can be submissive to their husbands. Quite frankly, being told not to look usually ensures that a person does, in fact, look so the jokes really on them.

Alberta Rose said...

How about the BOYS "saving themselves for marriage!"

Josh Duggar did, and so is John David. The males and females are both told the same thing.

Anonymous said...

These parents are more than likely projecting their own sexual beliefs on these kids, who are so sheltered they probably have no idea what sexuality is...or at least are developing a very warped, dysfunctional perception of it. Jim boob is probably turned on by "Nike" women himself, so he tells his sons not to look. Jim boob and Michelle also display a lot of unhealthy pride on how much sex they do to result in 20+ pregnancies. They are so obsessed with sex themselves, are they afraid their kids are naturally sexually deviant too? Cuz shielding them from the outside certainly isn't the answer when mom and dad keep making children. Isn't the old saying, "do as I say, not as I do" something they're doing when they flaunt themselves in front of their children while the adult kids have to court like 19th century teenagers ??

Londonbridges said...

The only person who truly knows if they have kept themselves for marriage is the individual. We have no basis to prove or disprove anyone's statement. Just because these blessings have said they have waited doesn't make it so. JMHO.

Anonymous said...

I watched 19kidsandcouting until they used Michelle's miscarriage as episodes for their tv program. First. I don't think we saw the actual reaction that Michelle and Jim Bob had to the news. Secondly when Anna had a miscarriage it was sort of covered up. Third to create a memorial service just for tv ratings was beyond poor taste. That was the end for me to be mildly amused by these folks. They just crossed the line and cheapened the life of the baby they professed to love so much.

Anonymous said...

I have often wondered about the "miscarriage" incidences myself. If Michelle believes she was expecting and lost a child due to birth control pills, how do they explain Anna's early loss of a pregnancy? Obviously, she did not take birth control pills? Why nary a mention of hers? Michelle, I'm sure was cautioned heavily by Dr. Sarver about future pregnancy attempts, and completely ignored her doctor's advice as she seems to do. Also, to make such a spectacle of this sad event was in poor taste and showed attention whoring on her part. I'm sure Jim Bob would have been "ok"with a small, private observatory service to help with closure, but it was SHE who wanted cameras, lights, action!

auntliddy said...

I may be bucking the popular sentment here, but i had no problem with the miscarriage episode or the service. They believe this was a little person that welcomed into their family. I thought the service was touching, esp the pic of the tiny feet. Too many times a women miscarries, and the people around her just shrug it off and assume you will do same. But as the mother, you have already fallen in love with this child. Jmo. And i write this as someone who is pro choice, no other agenda here.

hello said...

I have no problem with them holding a service, butI feel that they should have held it in private instead of turning it into a media circus. Jimboob and Michelle seem to thrive on being in the public spotlight and will do anything to keep the TLC money train rolling. It has to be killing Michelle to know that her baby making days are most likely over. I believe that is the reason she is now spending one on one time with her kids for the show. Josie was the last baby and has been passed on to her sister mom and there is no new baby to take her place. She doesn't seem to know how to bond with her kids once they are weaned and she certainly hasn't bonded with her grandkids. The jealousy is really going to kick in when more grandkids are born and Michelle knows she can't have anymore.

Judy said...

I'm sure they did the miscarriage and funeral episode to emphasize that the baby was a full human being, not a "miscarriage." Goes with their value/beliefs.

Anonymous said...

I watched the Jubilee funeral episode. Shame on the Duggars for using it to promote their political beliefs. They used carefully chosen words to promote their agenda. The fetus measured at 16 weeks and yet they used 18 week measurements and weight according to the standard internet sites to make it somehow older. Shame , shame on them

Anonymous said...

I also watched the Jubliee funeral episode. There was one part of the episode that really caught my attention, TLC was showing the front and roof of the Duggar house with a bird flying over head which was to symbolize a free spirit. Well that bird just so happened to be a BUZZARD. Very poor taste TLC.







Anonymous said...

I was rereading some of the older comments & came across this one by Anonymous 7/18 @12:54pm You summed up every thought & feeling I had about that that episode. I absolutely agree, they crossed the line & cheapened the life of the baby they professed to love so much. A small private family service would be fine. Those who wished could send a card or write a note of sympathy.

Anonymous said...

Duggars also continue to refer to the baby as "stillborn" even though it was not. No death certificate was issued for the baby since it was not far enough along. She experienced a late miscarriage, and as sad as that is, it was disingenuous to call it otherwise to justify the giant funeral and media attention they sought and to use it for political gain. This should have been a private time for family to mourn their loss instead of promoting their agenda. Nothing is sacred with this family.

Anonymous said...

At first glance I thought you were referring to just the duggars ... Filthy home...19 kids...hillbillies ( I keep seeing the idiotic streaking down the aisle barefoot). yee-haw!

Anonymous said...

Ummmm....you might want to read up on the youngest boy now.

Anonymous said...

Ben and Jessa could understand it. Jill no. She is a lemming and derickdillard doesn't seem to have a backbone. She

He, though college educated and having gone on his own to live in a foreign country, just goes right along with her childishness. Duh... Like totally.
g with her.

Anonymous said...

What puts big bucks in the family coffer are the episodes. This was something beyond the normal engagement, wedding, birthing stories so why not use it to get paid ?a quiet service with no TLC coverage would have paid nothing.

Anonymous said...

That is fine and I would respect it but come on, why not a simple service instead of making sure it was anther event they could make money on. Vulgar to use the death of a precious baby to have more money to show off more.