I first realized the world of television was changing when I heard Bowling for Soup’s 2004 song “1985.” The verses that included “when did reality become TV” and “music still on MTV” brought to my attention how much television has changed since I was in elementary school.
Nowadays, there is an overflow of reality televisions shows that fill up most time slots on MTV and other channels like BET and VH1. It seems like anyone with a somewhat interesting life or even a mundane life can score their own show.
I want to go back to the time where I would come home from middle school and my sister and I would watch the top music videos of the week on MTV’s Total Request Live (TRL).
Today, you won’t find hardly any music videos on the so-called Music Television channel, just an influx of reality TV targeted toward adolescents.
I feel like some shows aired on MTV are almost condoning careless acts that teenagers get themselves into.
For example, the show “16 and Pregnant” is almost rewarding teenagers who get pregnant by giving them their own show.
Yes, it does show teens the hardships of being pregnant at 16 but it also almost makes teenagers think its cool to get pregnant because they could be featured on a show.
I mean we don’t see any shows on MTV that promote teenagers being 19 and successful. Why wouldn’t a channel targeted toward young people want to show successful role models on television for inspiration?
Last quarter, our sorority had a 90s exchange where everyone dressed up in nineties attire or as characters from the 90s. As I was searching characters on the Internet for ideas of what to wear, it got me thinking about how much I missed the old music I used to listen to and the shows I grew up watching.
There is a certain comfort that comes along with going back and watching some of the shows I used to watch as a kid.
But, television has drastically changed from what our youth watch today.
What happened to the fun shows on Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network like “All That,” “Slime Time,” “Legends of the Hidden Temple” and “The Jetsons”––the family-friendly shows like “Full House,” “Step by Step” and “Who’s the Boss?” on abcfamily?
Now we have shows like “Jersey Shore” and “Duck Dynasty” that kids are more prone to watch nowadays than some old reruns of “Spongebob Squarepants.”
I felt like I was part of the Tanner family in “Full House” when I was younger because I watched it so frequently.
Do you think that parents today feel comfortable with their kids saying they feel like part of the Robertson family from “Duck Dynasty” or they can relate to Snooki’s social values over Danny Tanner’s family values?
I feel like television shows are being partial parents in today’s society and it’s important what kids watch growing up because it can affect the way they view things.
I’m not saying there isn’t some really great television out there today like “Downton Abbey” and other drama and crime shows of that ilk but I feel like the shows that target young people aren’t up to par as they used to be.
This just shows how much our society is changing and our adolescents are being exposed to real world things at a younger age. But why not bring back some of these good ole sitcoms and try to keep the kids of America in their overalls for one more year?
Maybe the new show “Girl Meets World,” the sequel to the 90s show “Boy Meets World,” will bring back the boyish charm of American television when it hits the small screen in the coming year.
Molly Bowman is a senior journalism major from Shreveport who serves as editor for The Tech Talk. Email comments to mmb...@latech.edu.