Friday, August 03, 2007

Kid Nation...are you kidding me?

I'm a fan of some reality tv shows, like Big Brother and Survivor, but upon learning that CBS was going to have a show called "Kid Nation" where children are supposedly left to fend for themselves in an abandoned town in New Mexico...My first thought was...


What kind of money hungry attention starving ditzy parent would allow their child to live under those kinds of conditions and what hare brained people at CBS actually thought up this one?

These are not exactly almost adults - the children are aged 8 to 15. This should be considered child abuse and I plan to contact every single advertiser for this junk that it's not appropriate to use kids in this way. No, I won't be watching, seeing the preview was more than enough for me to see that even in the reality tv world which is at times of questionable taste, this one takes the cake.


Cyberseaer said...

And now something to debate on:

Lisa, Lisa, Lisa,

If you want tasteless reality TV, you go to FOX with Temptation Island and such ilk. I, for one, not only will be watching this but I will be praying that it becomes a top ten TV hit smash.

Why not have a high price game for kids? That's what reality TV is in the end, a glorified game show. ANd what's the talk about child abuse? What are these kids going to do that's abuse? Hard work and no TV? Come on, Lisa. Kids in this age range on farms do harder work. Hard work is good. They will have to solve problems and work at them. Plus they will not get fat by hanging around a TV and need excerise. The excerise will be the hard work. And 8 to 15 ages aren't babies. Hell, there are some eight year olds who can kick some 21 year old's ass.

If you call this child abuse, than Double Dare should be consider a freak show. The contestants do really stupid stunts for a walkman or entertainment center or other junk. In the Kid Nation, the kids learn how to earn money, maintain a business, learn the value of an honest day's work, and a chance of $20,000 in gold. IT will build character in them and, if the chilren think they have had enough, the kids can quit and go home. Where's the abuse?

When we were kids, we learn through experience and did lots of dumb things, but we gained alot of common sense (a quality that is sorely being lost on today's youth) and we learned to work for stuff we wanted. If I wanted a new bike, video game, or a car, I had to work for it. I was given nothing in my youth. Where I live, most parents just give their kids the means to get whatever they want without the disipline of earning the stuff. I see this show as a way to show children that they can still get stuff they want, b ut work for it and appreciate it more.

You want to talk about sick shows, watch the TLC channel, or (as I call it) the freak show channel. There is a show called "Honey We're Killing Our Kids", which shows a couple of bad parents that let their kids eat and do whatever the kids want to do and the parents ask a team of health experts to help them parent. The one hour show records the struggles of the family learning to be active and eat healthy and there are many tears shed during those 60 minuts. This show tells people that the TV people will help them gain control of the family so why bother parenting at all. This is truly a sick show and you should boycott the advertisiers of that show.

There are my points. I can't wait for your rebuttal on this issue. Reminds me of the great debate that we had during the excite days. Ah, to be five years younger again.

Lisa Renee said...

C - first let me remind you that I don't have cable tv, so my television watching is rare and only consists of the four major tv networks. I've never watched Double Dare, but it does not sound as if it involves 40 days of 8 year old children being left to fend for themselves in a ghost town that does not even have basic living facilities from how the clip made this appear.

The child abuse factor is parents who would volunteer their young children to be placed in an environment that is reminiscent of the book "Lord of the Flies", which if you remember was not exactly a pleasant environment. All done supposedly for the entertainment of us and holding up the idea of a few children based on some screwy popularity contest being awarded a gold star made of real gold worth $20,000.

There was that one tv show about troubled youth being in some type of a treatment camp, while that was questionable at least there were adults present. This is 40 days of children being left to their own devices. I don't know about you, but would you trust your two children alone for 40 days with no one to care for them? That's not something I would let happen to Aubrey. What if one of these kids is sexually abused by one of the older ones? What if someone were to be injured and require medical attention? It's not as if many 8 to 15 year olds are medically trained.

Deeper yet, especially citing the TLC show you did that I've never seen, what in the hell is wrong with us that anyone would find that entertainment? Nanny 911 was hard enough for me to watch to see how some of these people should not be allowed to reproduce...Ever...

So, I challenge you if you think it's such a great idea to sign up your two for Kid Nation 2, that way we can see how great of an adventure it turns out to be for them, while I send advertisers nasty letters and wait for the law suits that will come when one of these kids if they are truly left alone for the 40 days end up injured, molested or dead...

(how's that?) :-)

Cyberseaer said...

Wow, talk about a negative Nancy there.

Let us remember that this is TV. These kids will not be alone to fend for themselves. Should there be an accident in the town, there will be a medical team on the spot to treat the wounded, and if needed, to medivat them out to a hospital.

Though Survivor tagged itself as the contestants living in the wild with no help, each people was given vitamins each day and when someone got seriously hurt or ill (as in three different seasons), that person was medically treated and not allowed to come back to the contest.

Also, those cameras will be running all day and night to get the best shots of the kids being at their worst. There will be ground rules and plenty of people off camera to make sure the kids aren't alone.

Let's think about the issues of injury, sexual abuse and death on a TV game show. In an age where TV and radio shows get sued and boycotted for using the words "nigger" and "nappy headed hoes" do you honestly think that the network lawyers would let this idea fly without 500,000 safety conditions so that they don't get sued? And if any of those kids got really hurt or died, they would never air the series to begin with.

Now, don't dare me to have my kids apply for the second seson. A month and a half with no kids in my house? Talk about heaven. I might just do it for the peace and quiet. I know my 9 year old son would jump at the chance to do that. I will look into it and see the conditions of the auditions and I just might do that. But I don't think it will get that far. We are talking about CBS here and they like to kill new shows after three shows because it doesn't let the show find an audience for less than amonth now. I'm really suprised that The Unit is still on the air.

Sscrewy popularity contest? Lisa, that's elementary, middle, and high school every day. At least on the show the popular kids will get money. In real life, popular kids get kids that really don't like them, they are just hangers on and only have that feeling of power (as fake as it really is) for a short time before the harsh reality crushes their dreams to dust. So voting for a kid to get cash isn't any worst than dealing with everyday social schoolyard networking. Plus this will give the kids a taste of reality that life ain't fair so suck it up.

And your Lord of the Flies example is a bit extreme (though I never read the book, I know the gist of it).

That bounce you just heard was the ball in the middle of your court for you to react.

Man, I missed this e-debates. They're fun.
As for the Nanny 911, I totally agree with you. I would love to see a follow up with a Nanny 911 to see that shit has fallen apart again, becaus the parents just can't handle the pressure.

Lisa Renee said...

If they apply Survivor rules then it's false advertising, they truly are not alone for 40 days with no adults which makes the show go from being "Are you Kidding me?" to OMG what a farce. Which would ruin this as a debate so, let's say that they really truly mean the alone for 40 days this time...

You didn't answer if you would leave your children alone to fend for themselves for 40 days, beyond the it would be heaven aspect. It may sound like heaven but you'd worry if they were eating, had enough clean drinking water, etc.

The sexual abuse factor is a realistic one given the mixing of the ages, and given many teens are having sex at age 13 and 14 mixing 8 to 15 year olds is a bad move, no matter how many cameras are around - you think these kids would not figure out how to be off camera? Seriously C, think about someone like my one daughter, you know the trouble maker one, imagine her at age 15 at that town...If you have not read Lord of the Flies, I have to say that was my first thought, especially the scene that involved the pig...and the abject cruelty that was evidenced. Kids can be cruel and don't exactly have all of the common sense they should have at that age.

I realize it's high school /elementary popularity bs, hence not the best way to really award a true weekly winner of $20,000 once again sending the message that most likely it's not hard work that earns you anything but how well you flirt or other...

(bounces ball back to your court)


Cyberseaer said...

Well, the point of having my kids apply is moot. The deadline was today at 5:00pm. And to fully answer your question, without delaying, postponing, back pedaling, double talking, double dipping, doubling back, cover the butt, and all other examples, is, Uh, where was I? Oh. Yes is the answer. If my kids wanted to do it and after days of dicussion and meeting with producers and the crap that goes with it, I would let them apply and try out and yes, I would let them on the show, should they make it. I have let them go to Vermont with a friend of ours to camp out there for a week or two and the girl has gone to Girl Scout camp for a week without us. All those times they have come back and talk to us about the times spent.

The second day of Girl Scout camp, my daughter told us about two girls who threaten everyone in the cabins that they would kill them with their knives. Those girls were expelled from the camp, but they could have been trouble and injury there, where there is lots of adult supervision.

This is not a safe world that we live in and there is danger everywhere. This kids on the TV show could get raped, injuryed or killed without cameras rolling.

As for the contest of the $20,000, I get a sense that the kid who gets the gold star will be voted based on effort than buttkissing. But that was my take on the promo. The true test of what is what on the show is to watch it and then have opinions made. If you do not what to watch it, that's fine. I will be more than happy to watch it for you and give you my opinion and try to be unbiased.

As for the farce thing, again this is TV based in Hollywood where things aren't always what they seem.

The ball is coming to you and is close to the line. But I must leave to take care of my little family before they think I'm a shut in. I will be move than happy to pick this up tomorrow.

I just want to point out that you have time to email once in awhile (I know, it is such a low blow and I'm an ass to bring it up. But, I did.)

Hold that racket high or you might miss it. ;)

Anonymous said...

Ok my child was on this show. I have to tell you that we were not told of any pay in advance nor about the gold stars. So we did not do this for money. My child has no interest in any kind of acting or attention or fame. We did this as we thought it would be an outstanding educational experience for my child. To learn to work with others, work hard and solve problems, build a community. Simple as that. The children were highly screened. There were no violent kids or kids that would act inappropriately. Although they did not spoil the premise of the show by interacting with the children there were plenty of adults around manning the cameras, etc.

Lisa Renee said...

Actually anonymous, that does spoil the whole premise of the show. It seems strange you found my blog but if what you are saying is true, as a parent of five? I disagree with you that spending 40 days under that type of environment is a learning experience I'd want any of my children to go through. If you really felt your child needed some type of a challenge, I've heard good things about the Outwards Bound program....

The main part of this that we really haven't touched on is why anyone would find this entertaining, especially since it appears it's all fake. Knowing that adults are there 24/7 manning the camera these kids are not "learning" anything on their own, they are just play acting.

I assumed it was some type of video surveillance not real camera people. Obviously the creators of the show didn't trust the kids to live on their own as the show stated either.

Back to your very first post C - a game show for kids is fine with me, but this isn't a game show, the smartest person or the most talented person in one area doesn't win, it sounds like this is a scripted plot with a pre-determined ending. I liked the Amazing Race with the families - that at least was more real than this.


Cyberseaer said...

Back to my other point, this is TV. Reality TV isn't real, it's for entertainment and I am all for that.

If the kids learn something, great. If not, they have a story to tell their kids later in life.

As for anyone who would think this this is entertaining? Just call me anyone. I love seeing people loding their minds under stress of big money and prizes because, as Homer tells us, "It's funny becuase it isn't me."

If any of the parents sue later on about anything that might bring the kids any negative feedback, then they shouldn't have had their kids on the first place. But since they will be part of the public domain, let the games begin!

Lisa Renee said...

For me C, while I enjoy some reality tv shows, they have to be ones where it at least seems possible it will have a fair and honest outcome. Like Amazing Race, Survivor and at times Big Brother, they at least have some elements of challenge where it's possible anyone could win.

The more I learn about Kid Nation and discover how fake it really is thanks to the parent who posted here, while my original concerns are lessened, I don't see the enjoyment factor in watching kids get stressed out or kid drama, I have enough of that at home that I don't find that something I'd want to watch on tv too.