Some folks can’t get enough of the “reality TV” format, and others just cringe.
Though viewer tastes may wander between singing competitions, real housewives and the Louisiana bayou’s upper crust, reality programming seems firmly entrenched.
During an informal request to Daily Press readers on Facebook to name some of their favorite reality shows, preferences spanned the major networks and basic cable.
Restaurateur Albert Soto had this to say: “Restaurant Impossible and the Duggars 19 Kids and Counting.”
A couple of popular responses named programs with a decidedly rural bent.
A frequent favorite was the A&E show “Duck Dynasty,” which follows the Robertson family of Louisiana. The Robertsons own Duck Commander sporting goods and are fabulously wealthy, but their country customs and idiosyncrasies are undiminished.
“Swamp People,” a History Channel program about Cajuns hunting alligators in the Atchafalaya River wetland of Louisiana, also got some votes.
According to Neilsen, the three highest-rated reality shows during the week of July 8 were all on major networks: America’s Got Talent on NBC, The Bachelorette on ABC and Big Brother on CBS. The three most watched episodes for each franchise were viewed in 6.4 percent, 4.8 percent and 3.6 percent of homes, respectively.
The term “reality show” is often applied to lightly scripted or unscripted shows with unknown actors and small budgets.
But it might be argued that today’s formats are merely the logical evolution of other live productions which could be called “reality TV.” Sports broadcasting, game shows and late night talk are as old as TV itself. The open-ended story lines of many reality series are reminiscent of soap operas.
Does reality TV include coverage of the U.S. Congress? Michael Stopp wrote that he loved “C-Span 2, you never know what they’re gonna do? Though usually nothing….”
Tony O’seland said, “Antiques Roadshow” and “American Pickers” are watched on occasion in his home.
“But I find the ‘reality’ … content on these other so-called shows to be lacking,” he added. “They want reality? Let them come watch us scramble to find the money for our mortgage so we don’t lose our house any given month.”
O’seland highlighted an alternative view held by several of the Facebook respondents: Some people don’t care for the genre.
Margie Teregon Ingram wrote, “I absolutely HATE reality TV. If I can’t change the channel, then I will leave the room.”
Some manifestations of reality entertainment may strike one as odd. Joel McHale, host of E’s “The Soup,” which pokes fun at reality TV, once quipped on the weekly series that we live in “the golden age” of abandoned storage locker bidding reality shows - with three on the air. He spoke too soon: A&E has since added two spinoffs of “Storage Wars.”
“I think the appeal of any reality show is the everyday drama of it,” said Elizabeth Cross of Tahlequah Cable Television, Inc. “On shows like the singing competitions, I think people enjoy the anticipation of who will win or get voted off. They also enjoy actually taking part in the voting.”
Cross said she enjoys a number of series on TLC and MTV, a network many credit as a pioneer of the modern reality show when it started airing “The Real World” in 1992.
MTV will soon air the 29th season. Other long-running reality programs include “Judge Judy” (17 seasons), “Big Brother” (14) and “Survivor” (13).
Longevity of the genre seems to indicate one certainty about reality TV.
“It is here to stay,” Cross said.
*Includes online exclusive*
Some folks can’t get enough of the “reality TV” format, and others just cringe.
- Local News
Foster mom denied bond in child’s death
A 47-year-old woman arrested Tuesday night for the alleged murder of a 2-year-old girl was jailed in 2011 for wielding a knife during an argument over aluminum cans, and several agencies are reviewing the decision to allow the woman to be a foster parent.
Investigators on Wednesday continued their search for information into the death of Alysa Horney, who was found unresponsive at the Woodall home of her foster mother, Delila Pacheco, Sunday morning.
Pacheco, 47, appeared in front of Associate District Judge Mark Dobbins Wednesday morning and was denied bond a day after her arrest for first-degree murder.
Cherokee County Undersheriff Jason Chennault said investigators discovered the toddler had minor visible bruises on her body Sunday morning, when deputies and EMS were called to the home.
Getting in compliance
During harsh winter weather, such as Cherokee County has experienced during the past week, concerns are often raised about the plight of people living in substandard housing. In Tahlequah, the situation has been compounded by the recent controversy over a rooming house where a child died last month.
Recently, the city of Tahlequah has begun to closely scrutinize homes that may not be up to code, and officials could decide to take action during 2014.
Pair helping former Stepping Stone residents
Christmas is a time for “peace on Earth and good will toward men,” and two local woman are putting the adage into practice by helping a group of recently displaced Tahlequah residents.
Denise LaGrand and Toni Bailey have volunteered within the community for years, but when the Stepping Stone Rooming House closed abruptly, LaGrand was spurred into action by others’ attitudes toward the evicted residents.
New pizza, liquor businesses in Tahlequah
Though the holiday season is usually a slow time for new business openings, a few new ventures are now welcoming customers in Tahlequah.
Recently opened businesses include J&L’s NYC Hot Dogs, Rum Runners liquor store, The Taco Truck and Pendleton’s Barbecue and Pizza.
Music to their ears
Local musicians looking for a chance to perform band music with fellow players are invited to join a group at Northeastern State University.
The Communiversity Band is a concert ensemble composed of NSU students and members of the Tahlequah community, and there is still time to get involved.
Hand-crafted ornaments, holiday gifts mean the most
For families on tight budgets, Christmas gift-giving means advanced planning and thinking outside the box. Often some of the most cherished gifts are those made by hand.
People looking to exercise their creative side this year need only look as far as Pinterest, according to Heather Winn, family and consumer science educator for the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service.
Cherokee County foster mother arrested for murder of 2-year-old
Investigators have arrested a 47-year-old foster mother for first-degree murder in the death of a 2-year-old girl Sunday morning.
Delila A. Pacheco was arrested and transported to the Cherokee County Detention Center at about 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to Cherokee County Undersheriff Jason Chennault.
Pacheco is accused of killing 2-year-old Alysa Horney.
Ki Bois to offer services for veterans, families
In an effort to assist some of the area’s neediest veterans, the Ki Bois Community Action Foundation recently announced the startup of its Supportive Services for Veterans Families program.
Ki Bois will hold a grand opening ceremony Thursday, Dec. 12 from 1-3 p.m. at the Muskogee office, 421 N. Broadway St.
However, Ki Bois began actual administration in its area of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs program Dec. 1. Funding is through the Veterans Administration, and Cherokee County veterans will also be served.
Roads get help from Mother Nature
Cherokee County commissioners were pleased to see the sun and rising temperatures help melt away some of the muck left along area roads Tuesday.
All of that melting is sure to leave some slick spots in the overnight and early morning hours for the next several days, but conditions are expected to improve.
Braving the cold
Though the weekend weather made travel difficult, the Snowflake ice rink still attracted plenty of skaters who wanted to spend time outdoors, balancing on blades.
The closing of Tahlequah Public Schools and other Cherokee County schools Monday created another skating opportunity, but there were only a couple of teen skaters on the ice at 3 p.m. Monday, braving the cold.
- More Local News Headlines
- Foster mom denied bond in child’s death