Design Star: Not Hateful Enough

Posted by Rob Walker on September 4, 2006
Posted Under: Reviews,Suggestions

The reason that none of you have been watching Design Star on HGTV is that it is, of course, not a good show. The reason that it’s not a good show was glaringly obviously last night, as the two finalists squared off in a thick fog of mutual respect and best wishes. When they wished each other good luck, they really seemed to mean it: Whoever loses will be ever so happy for the winner.

Who wants to watch that? Where’s the excitement? The episode ended with a group hug. Nobody watches reality TV competitions to see a group hug. Nobody.

I couldn’t care less about fashion designers, but there’s little question that Project Runway is more interesting to watch precisely because so many of the participants are hateful, and seem to hate each other — and each other’s mothers, for that matter. Maybe they don’t, maybe it’s all in the editing, but it all seems pretty mean-spirited, and that’s what counts.

Probably you already knew all that. But I’m wondering if there isn’t an opportunity for a reality show that simply cuts through all the clutter and simply about hatefulness. It could be called America’s Next Top Asshole, and the weekly “challenges” would involve being an awful human: Making a stranger cry, lying to a loved one, taking credit for someone else’s accomplishments, cheating, stealing, insulting, etc. The judges would, of course, be the most hateful people from reality-show history (Puck, Richard Hatch, Ashlee Simpson, etc.). The winner would get a bunch of endorsement contracts, a show on MSNBC, and, of course, braggin’ rights.

Anyway, after last night’s episode of Design Star crawled to its feel-good conclusion, E and I agreed that we would be more likely to hire David, but that Alice would probably have a better show. So for the record, I’m voting for Alice. She’s real sweet.

Further diversion may be found at MKTG Tumblr, and the Consumed Facebook page.

Reader Comments

“The winner would get a bunch of endorsement contracts, a show on MSNBC, and, of course, braggin’ rights.”

Or at least that would be what they were told. I think that, for one time and one time only – and appropriate to the contestants on this hypothetical show – the winner should be totally and completely cheated out of their prize and, on top of that, publicly humilitated – like put in stocks and pelted with rotten vegetables humiliated.

Of course, after that they’d end up getting the endorsements anyways. But to see the color fall out of their faces when they realized they were getting nothing for being an awful human being – now that’d be entertainment.

Written By jkd on September 4th, 2006 @ 5:01 pm

jkd: I like that concept. And/or maybe all the endorsements should be for humiliating products. But probably pelted with vegetables is more effective.

Written By murketing on September 5th, 2006 @ 5:44 pm
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