As a huge gameshow buff, I can firmly attest that there’s no better way to spend a Saturday evening. But, at some point we need to start taking responsibility of the kind of content that we are putting out there.
It’s 2019, people, surely we’ve gotten to the point in our evolution that physical attractiveness is no longer something that we need to put an emphasis on? However, thanks to Instagram and celebrity culture, we’re putting more stress on appearances than ever before. And, our home-viewing seems to be reflecting that.
You can’t even scroll through Netflix without finding a show that’s purely based on a person’s “hotness.” For example, 100% Hotter invites people onto the show to have complete strangers rate their attractiveness, before being given a makeover to “improve their score.” Similarly, My Hotter Half invites couples on for (again) strangers to pit them against each other to figure out who is the more attractive partner.
Now, these are self-explanatorily hideous, but the one that stands out is the reboot of “Your Face or Mine,” in which people are pitted against their partner’s exes, parents, siblings, friends as well as total strangers and their partners have to decide who they think the audience will find “hotter.” Pretty much guaranteed to make at least one of the contestants feel bad about themselves for our entertainment, it also applies pressure to the cracks within relationships – again, something that we seem to take pleasure in. But this runs deeper, what kind of messages are we sending to future generations?
Humanity has generally had an affinity for watching people (and animals) suffer for the sake of entertainment, thankfully, a lot of these practises are no longer in use. So, why is it that we slap a cute tagline on it, throw a couple of comedians in the mix and deem it acceptable?
But, alas, it seems as though no matter how far technology advances, deep down, we’re still primitive race with a yearning for schadenfreude.
Growing up as a teenager without social media, the pressure of “looking good” came solely from the other girls and boys around us. When we went home, we were able to relieve some of that pressure and learn to be comfortable and safe being our authentic selves. This gave us a chance to know exactly who those “selves” are. Children and teenagers now, do not have that luxury, the pressure follows them home, it’s glued to their hands and plastered all over their social media. The last thing we need to do, as adults, is teach them that they should be concerned about how they look. We have a responsibility to teach real values.