Sunday, March 8, 2009
High School Reunion
All over the city at the moment there are ads for a reality show called High School Reunion. The ads feature adults holding an old Polaroid yearbook photo over their face, each Polaroid™ having something written across the bottom such as ‘The Ugly Duckling’ or ‘The Football Star’. Now, at first I was very strongly against this program existing, as it seems like just another attempt by television executives to cash in on the lowest common denominator found in people by lowering the rapidly-plummeting bar another notch or two. The simple fact is that most people are fairly nervous about attending their high school reunions, as the human brain seems to have a very hard time grasping that what people think of you means pretty much nothing, especially if the people in question see you once every five to ten years, depending on how often you all bother to show up at functions organized by your old high school class. But people approach these things with apprehension, desiring to put on a show to impress some panel judges that never reveals itself. By making this show, the television producers are hoping that this irrational fear will get people to watch their program, turning a base horror into money via a process far more evil than alchemy. But then I thought about the Polaroids™ over the faces in the ads, and I realized that everyone in the world can be lumped into narrow, easily-recognizable categories, as these advertisements suggest. So I guess it’s all okay.