Published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 19:10
This past week, I tried something I immediately knew I would regret. Call it morbid curiosity, call it masochism, the result is the same. For two hours, I disconnected my brain from any semblance of sanity or intelligence, and subjected myself to unspeakable acts of horror. And worst of all, I genuinely fear I will never be the same again.
I watched four episodes of “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.”
For those of you who are blissfully unaware of what a Honey Boo Boo is, I’m going to destroy that bliss. “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” is a spinoff of the TLC show “Toddlers & Tiaras.” It follows the exploits of six-year-old beauty queen Alana Thompson (Honey Boo Boo) and her redneck family in Southern Georgia. And yes, it is every bit as terrible as it sounds.
Let me start by saying that I’m a fan of bad television. I watch pro wrestling, so I don’t claim to be a TV snob by any means, but this show. This show is…
Is there a word for that feeling you get when a shiver runs up your spine, and you simultaneously feel queasy and fearful for the future of humanity? I feel like there should be. Because once you’ve gazed into the abyss and blinked, there should be an easy way to explain to the doctors why you’re bleeding from the eyes and sobbing uncontrollably.
Okay, I’m being a bit dramatic here. But seriously, why is this show a thing? On paper, it sounds like the sort of fictional show you’d see the background of a movie, parodying how terrible reality TV is. Besides, I thought we as a nation agreed that child beauty queens were a bad idea after JonBenet Ramsey was murdered? Did I miss the memo that exploiting toddlers and tarting them up on cable was in again?
I don’t even have a point to make in any of this ranting. It just makes me angry. I’m angry that a network would be so irresponsible as to thrust this kind of fame onto someone so young. I’m angry at the family for putting that child in the limelight, despite the fact that history shows how bad a decision that is. I’m angry that it did better in the ratings than the Republican National Convention coverage.
I’m sure there are people reading this who will say I’m being too judgmental, and it’s all in good fun. Maybe that’s true, and maybe I just don’t get it, but honestly, what sort of normal life can this kid hope to live? All she has ever known is a life of exploitation. So what happens when the cameras stop rolling?