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such a nasty woman | by maryann johanson

question of the day: How could reality TV sink any lower than Fox’s new ‘I Married a Stranger’?

The Hollywood Reporter blog The Live Feed made the announcement:

Fox is developing a wedding reality series where brides-to-be don’t meet their husbands until they exchange vows.

In A. Smith & Co.’s “I Married a Stranger,” a woman frustrated by the dating scene agrees to marry a man she’s never met. While she prepares for a blind wedding, friends and family are shown selecting a spouse from a pool of six eligible suitors offered by producers. The men are eliminated one by one until only two candidates remain. Both finalists walk down the aisle, but only one makes it to the altar to reveal himself to his new wife.

“She never meets him until the actual moment when they say ‘I do,’ ” a source close to the project said. “It’s like the big scene that comes after an entire season of ‘The Bachelor,’ only this is in every episode.”

Because The Bachelor isn’t crass enough, see, so Fox decided to cram a season’s worth of crude, cheap vulgarity into every single episode. It’s brilliant! This is why TV executives get the big bucks, folks: because their brains are capable of going places the minds of normal, well-adjusted people could never even conceive of thinking about going.

But let’s try. How could reality TV sink any lower than Fox’s new I Married a Stranger? How could things possibly get worse than this?

Here’s my pitch for Fox: I Dare You Not to Become a Drug Addict. We start with 12 contestants, all smart, attractive, young, with everything to live for. The first challenge is easy (and legal!): Each must consume fifths of tequila — three apiece! — over the course of four hours, and whoever’s not dead the next morning moves on to the next round. From then on, it’s alternating illegal drugs with legal ones, and moving up the depravity scale. Pot, ecstasy, oxycontin, speed, coke, heroin, Vicodin, and so on. Whoever exits the 12-week, 12-episode challenge not addicted to anything wins! But more fun is watching what all the losers will do for their next hit. Which I Dare producer will Britney the cute blond cheerleader fuck for some more heroin? Which 7-Eleven will Brad, the promising medical student, knock over for enough cash to score? Watch for the celebrity addict guest in each episode!

Now gimme my production deal, Fox.

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me.)

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  • Drew

    Date my Children!

    Children (brother-sister pairs of 6-10 years old, naturally) of broken homes hang out with a single woman. Every episode they have challenges and eliminate a pair of kids (Except when they surprise-eliminate two pairs at once a little less than halfway through the season), until one brother-sister pair remains. Their daddy marries the woman!

    In summary, I believe Fox can target children a little more. The whole octuplet thing is great and all (exploit 8 kids at once!), but they can do more, with more tears, and even more exploitation!

    Good god, I’m worried by the fact that this could actually happen.

  • misterb

    Let’s not be too ethno-centric here, arranged marriages are probably more common than “marriage for love” if you look at the global community. While I’m not saying Fox is doing this crap because of their sensitivity to South Asian culture, you may end up with a better match if you let people who care for you make the decisions. Most young adults are not renowned for their wisdom and forbearance in sexual decision making.
    That said, I’d like to see:
    Is this Reality Show a hit?

    In this one, a behind-the-scenes look at reality shows, America votes on 4 different reality shows each week – the winning producers gets ONE MILLION DOLLARS, the losers have to work at MacDonald’s for the rest of their lives.

  • Ken

    Well, you could go with groups of both men and women, with viewers deciding who will pair off with whom.

    Alternately, it could be contractual that any contestant who doesn’t win the contest of the reality show they’re on has to appear on a different reality show, where they face odd against similar losers in demeaning tasks until they win. (Carlin was on to something with this idea for the Ms. America pageant.)

  • How about a show called “The Virgin”, where instead of marriage, the winner gets to deflower a barely 18 virgin on national TV?

    Or a show called “Puppy Fight Club”?

    “Too Many Kids” is a show where a family with 6 or more kids has the audience vote which one to send to the adoption agency because the economy is forcing them to sell their house and move into a 3 bedroom apartment.

    This is fun.

  • Anne-Kari

    From what little I’ve seen of The Hills, I just don’t think reality TV can get any lower than Speidi.

  • shawnp

    This is the sanctity of marriage that all the Prop 8 Haters are defending?

  • bitchen frizzy

    No, it’s not.

    It will validate their argument that the sanctity of marriage is going down the drain.

  • Paul

    One of the underground crisises of the GOP is that some conservative to moderate Christians are waking up to how their true enemies aren’t liberals, but conservative capitalists. This is an excellent example of their incompatiability.

    As for being on topic, my suggestion would be: who wants to raise my kid? A wealthy couple puts a series of nannies through tests to see who can raise their children. To steal a quote from “Frasier” (actually Niles): We’ll care so you won’t have to.

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