Gilby’s Guidance #6

Meta-Reality.

Image: howies collective. http://www.flickr.com/photos/15174213@N08/1797671577/
Image: howies collective. http://www.flickr.com/photos/15174213@N08/1797671577/

The seemingly never spinning roundabout of launches and finales that is Big Brother has managed to catch my eye with a celebrity shaped sign post. I’m in two minds about ‘the cult of celebrity’. Half of me completely panders to it; ask me anything Made in Chelsea or I’m A Celebrity… related and I can give you dates and times. However, I do feel that celebrities appearing on Big Brother (or any reality show) punctures the facade that we have learned to accept. Celebrities shouldn’t want us to know what lies behind the pearly whites and glistening hair. This part of me can’t help but deem it pitiful that celebrities want to be liked by the public. If they were in any way good at what they did then they would tell us all where to go with our opinions, and yet here is Big Brother allowing us to see how insecure celebrities are. Begging and breakdowns is not what I am asking of them.

Another thing I am not asking for is reality! The correlation between being yourself and likability is something that has been seriously misjudged within the realms of reality TV. Celebrities claiming, ‘I’m just being me’, over and over again does not negate from all the horrifying qualities they possess OR from wanting to smash them round the face with a frying pan. In fact, the notion that they feel ‘just being themselves’ deserves some kind of commendation increases the feelings of hostility I had for them in the first place.

TV shows such as TOWIE and Geordie Shore have devised the perfect star persona for our celebrity crazed age. It allows the dead-behind-the-eyes bimbo to be catapulted from reality show to reality show, playing the exact same character. It’s as if we are not getting enough real information about this reality star who is being completely real on multiple reality platforms; Twitter, Instagram, gossip columns and now every other television channel boasts it’s reality credentials. This breed of celebrity has no interest in enlightening the public with anything more than the under-impressive characteristics they were born with, and we revel in it!

From a students’ perspective there should be no one that we hate more than a talentless, reality star who throws their undeserved money back in our faces with designer clothes and tiny, shiny cars. Not just being stupid in private but splashing it around as violently as a pre-school swimming class: it is the opposite of what we embody! But broke and intelligent, we lap up the nobody celebrities. Famous for nothing, deserving of everything. It is us who facilitates their egos with pictures at night clubs, steady ratings once (or twice!) a week and the hours of conversation you need to have to discuss every minute detail that was fed in to our ‘should-be-writing-an-essay’ brain.

I hope that sub-consciously we are aware of how unjust reality celebrities are. A mere succession from WAGS has brought us a little closer to being able to relate to the people we see on TV and in magazines, but is that really what we want? With an indulgence for entertainment needs to come a realisation of what it is to be deserving of fame and success. Luckily, being a student allows us to easily see through the mask and look down upon the facade of celebrity, but still be allowed to consider Made in Chelsea as one of the highlights of our week.

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