Monday, July 1, 2013

A TV Show for Every Occupation

When people complain about shows like Keeping Up with the Kardashians, The Bachelorette, and the late, great Simple Life series, I tend to get a little annoyed. You see, at least these shows can teach you about important life skills like dressing oneself or milking a cow. At least you'll be better prepared for bar trivia after watching a few E! marathons. The same can not be said for all television shows.

 Image via Wikipedia

Because it's trendy to complain about reality television and how it's to blame for low test scores, ADHD, gluten intolerance, and other modern maladies, I tend to agree that it sucks. However, when I complain about reality television, I'm not referring to Jersey Shore and its ilk. Instead, I'm talking about pretty much every show on Discovery Channel, A&E, TLC, National Geographic, and all of the other supposedly educational channels. I'm sorry but, if you're going to complain about stupid television, why are you going after Teen Mom when you could be raging on the likes of Duck Dynasty, a show that is literally about people who invented a duck whistle? Like I mentioned in the title, there is a reality television show about almost every vocation.

Image via Amazon

For instance, if you're curious about what it's like to manufacture customized aquarium installations, you have not one, but two television shows to choose from. Or just go balls to the walls and watch both! Tanked is on Animal Planet, Fish Tank Kings is on National Geographic, and a detailed analytical comparison of the two is on reddit.

If you'd rather define yourself by your husband's occupation than actually get your own, you can choose between Basketball Wives, Mob Wives, Sister Wives, Army Wives, Starter Wives, and the many iterations of Real Housewives. I actually haven't seen any of these shows before, but I'm assuming it's just a bunch of scenes showing women in evening wear sipping white wine on a deck, talking about their husbands' jobs.

Obviously chefs of all varieties are well represented on television, namely with an entire channel devoted to food, cleverly named "The Food Network." You've got your cake bosses/aces, cupcake warriors from each major American city, people improving other people's food businesses, and yes, even a weight loss show targeted at fat chefs called, well, Fat Chef.

 Image via ABC
I can't get over how earnest this guy looks. Maybe his name is Earnest?

Speaking of cupcake warriors, there is a war-themed show about pretty much every imaginable conflict, and even some unimaginable ones. Storage Wars is about people bidding on abandoned storage units and their contents. And yes, it's about as riveting as it sounds. Somehow this show is successful. Parking Wars is literally a show about people handing out parking tickets. I'm not joking. Someone, somewhere pitched the idea for a show about parking cops, and some complete fool at the network was all "Sure, what the hell? I'll try anything once! Well...not anything, heh heh!"If that's not enough asinine warring for you, there are also Shipping Wars, Property Wars, and Food Court Wars.

The only thing I can think of that sounds more boring than watching someone write someone else a parking ticket is watching someone try on wedding dresses for an hour. You know when you go shopping with your friend, and you're in, say, Forever 21, and for the first time you go, "You know what, self? This store sells actual shit, and I'm not going to fall for it again!" so you kind of half-assedly browse the $1.80 earring rack, waiting for your friend to come to the same conclusion, only she doesn't, and instead you spot her limping to the fitting room, struggling under the weight of a closet's worth of neon, lace harem pants, and then you're forced to weigh in on each item and if it's worth the $13.80 or not, and you grow so bored that you actually wish you were at home in front of an episode of Parking Wars instead? In other words, watching people try on clothes is the opposite of a good time. Yet somehow Say Yes to the Dress is a successful TV show, spawning Say Yes to the Dress: Bridesmaids, Atlanta, Big Bliss, Randy Knows Best, Monte's Take, and Randy to the Rescue. And if that's not enough to make you want to stick a fork in a toaster, I just found out there's a show called I Found the Gown. I can't even imagine what bridal nuances it brings to the genre.

 Image via Facebook

Being an extreme couponer isn't exactly a job, but it somehow pays better than my job. And somehow, the folks at TLC have managed to make the act of clipping coupons into an edge-of-your-seat, slice-of-life, critically acclaimed television series. Along a similar vein is Extreme Cheapskates, also on TLC, which documents a broader range of frugal, "dollar-stretching" behavior. Most reality shows make me feel sad about all the material items I could be consuming but am too poor to afford. Extreme Cheapskates, on the other hand, aims to make you feel bad about flushing the toilet after taking a piss, because that shiz is expensive! How wasteful we all are. And to think I've never reused a piece of dental floss. I think I'd rather watch Kim Kardashian drop 2 million on flowers for her wedding. Come on, people. This is Amurrica!
Image via Wikipedia

And Discovery Channel has the remaining jobs covered. If you work in oil, custom weaponry, automobile design, the Amish mafia, the taxi game show industry, the weed industry, or do anything at all in Alaska, Discovery Channel has a show for you. For some reason, they don't make reality shows about people who sit in cubicles for 40 hours a week, but we'll always have The Office.

What's your favorite "educational" reality show? Do you prefer mindless reality fluff or inside looks at various occupations?


  1. Have you seen the show Top Hooker on Animal Planet? My husband has watched it and it is not as exciting as it sounds. There are no hookers, instead it's about fishing.

    I agree with you about all of this, but I can't not watch the Kardashians because they're a train wreck. I'm just waiting for that train to derail any day now.

    1. Hahaha I also love the clever names these shows come up with. I'm guessing there will soon be a show called America's Next Top Hooker that is actually about real hookers, and not lame-o fishermen.

  2. Seriously, what is with all these shows?! I don't see any reason to keep cable since its full of them.

  3. What about Finding Bigfoot...of course he is never found. Deadliest Catch...everyone is waiting for someone to be washed overboard and go down with a lobster pot (how do I even know the words "lobster pot") And the multitude of pet themed shows-Dog Whisperer, My cat/dog from hell, Too Cute puppy edition or Too Cute kitty edition. Wait I watch too much TV.

    1. lol my husband made me watch Finding Bigfoot once. Talk about a letdown. It seems like men LOVE all of these stupid shows too! He also loves all the dumb fishing shows.

  4. Hahaha. Dear God, I don't get reality TV. You forgot all of the home improvement shows - I started turning on HGTV when we were househunting and was overWHELMED. There's only so many iterations of house-swap a girl can handle.

  5. Along with the home improvement shows there are also a multitude of real estate buying shows. I came across one last night that was about buying private islands. Just why?


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