FIRST PRIZE IS THE GRETCHEN MOL GUESS-WHY-SHE'S-HERE SLOT ON THE COVER OF THE VANITY FAIR HOLLYWOOD ISSUE More so than anybody I know, Adam likes to get in on the ground floor of the reality shows. I first heard of TAR, ANTM, and Greenlight (all of which I love), and AI, Joe Schmo, and Project Runway (none of which I watch) from him. So, in an effort to scoop Adam, I am pleased to announce to you the greatest reality show on television: WB's The Starlet.
Disclaimer: I have never seen this show.
The premise is wickedly clever: Randomly kidnap ten delusional skinny girls from the malls, cafes, and Cingular stores of Los Angeles, baldly lie that one of them is going to be a star, and lock them in a room to claw each other to death while being judged by two actresses who apparently have a little free time plus the casting director from Project Greenlight. The reward: two or three years of unsuccessful auditions and a bus ticket back to the small town where the winner was the most attractive girl in her high school. In other words, same as every waitress in LA. Premise aside, this show really runs on the realistic challenges. Last week, and I'm not making this up, the contestants had to do the girl-on-girl kissing scene from Fastlane. Future challenges: reenacting artistic nude scenes from John Byner's Bizarre, "How Much Blow is Too Much Blow?" and "Brian DePalma's Casting Couch."
While on the topic of shamelessly exploitative reality TV, Defamer sadly reports that Paradise Hotel is not returning to Fox. Defamer sums it up better than I could: "the beloved reality show in which 'contestants' were locked away in a luxury resort with nothing to do but drown themselves in margaritas, screw, and tear out their hair at the capriciously-shifting rules concocted by sadistic producers." That gimmick -- changing the rules with no warning at all -- never got old. I don't know why nobody else uses it.