Last updated: February 07. 2014 3:32PM -
Robert Lee Contributing Columnist



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Reality, the reality of it all is that we have allowed a bunch of West Coast la la land men and women to come into our homes (read: Hollywood). Now you are asking yourselves, what’s he talking about now?


It has happened throughout TV history. What’s the flavor this year? What I mean is this. The first TV shows were a mix of comedies and game shows that were meant to be for the general population’s entertainment. Then, in time, we graduated into detective shows. One of those shows in the beginning was Highway Patrol.


Next in line was Dragnet. Almost all of the shows during those years were about cops. Then the people in la la land tired of those shows because the ratings started to drop off. Hollywood then decided that we were ready for more adventure in our lives. At that point we went into our western days.


The party was one. At this time the marketers came into the picture. Look out, Mom and Dad, little Johnny was never going to be the same. The reason for that was this: When advertisers came into the picture, little Johnny could not just sit there and watch the program and be happy. The advertisers and the marketers had gotten together and decided that little Johnny would not be happy unless he had a cap gun, cowboy hat, bots and, yes, a stick horse.


This went on for several years — westerns, that is. But I do have to say that the early westerns were some of the best programs that Hollywood would ever produce. Shows like Bonanza showed American that it was possible for a man on his own to raise three boys by himself. It also showed us a look at family life. Ben Cartwright had morals and principles and this was transferred to all of his sons. We all could see this in the kind acts of all the family members. Gunsmoke was also a great show at that time.


These shows were about entertaining us but it also taught us lessons about life and being human beings. Both of these programs were on TV for over 20 years and still are today in the form of reruns. That also brings the ad men back into the picture.


This was the point of no return for the family. It was all about marketing. It was no more than a product at that point. Sure, the shows were still entertaining, but the entertainment was second to the money-making.


Now we step into the future that is today. The reality shows … what have we come to? It is hard for me to understand just how weak-minded we have become. To think that there are people out there that think Honey Boo Boo is the best thing since sliced bread. What does it say about us?


If you will only look into the number of shows on air today that make fun of southerners, it’s sad. I don’t have a problem with us making fun of ourselves. I have a big problem when we, as a regional area, are laughed at.


Almost every week there are new shows that just make us look like fools to the rest of the country. I know these people that play these parts are laughing all the way to the bank, and that part is fine with me.


It’s just the rest of the country thinks we all act this way. The newest show, Party Down South, makes our young people look like drunks and tramps. This show might be entertaining to the folks above the Mason Dixon Line but it’s a shame on the southerners that play for the camera.

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