Dear CBS:


Look, CBS, I don't even watch you that much anymore. Two shows--CSI (the original) and How I Met Your Mother--that's it. Well, three, when The Amazing Race is on. But even then, you schedule it after football so my TiVo never picks it up (please see the angry comment I emailed you after the most recent season's premiere episode).

What I'm saying is ... your network sucks, CBS. You've got a bunch of crap there. And naturally, when you have the opportunity to improve yourself, you did this instead:

CBS says "I do" to arranged-marriage reality series
By James Hibberd

CBS is treading into potentially controversial reality TV territory again.

The network has ordered a new series from the producers of "Top Chef" that puts lovelorn singles into arranged marriages.

The show introduces four adults in the 25-45 age range who are eager to get married but have been unsuccessful in their search for a mate. Their friends and family select a spouse for them, and the newly paired couple exchange marital vows. The series follows their marriages.

Really, CBS? Really?

Of course, it's not like you've really lowered yourself here. If anything, it's kind of a lateral move, scumminess-wise. I mean, you ARE the Big Brother network.

Still, this is a pretty egregious idea, for many reasons.

1. Even couples who marry for love don't need cameras hanging around their houses during the first months of their marriage. That's kind of a private time for them to get used to being husband and wife/other partnership. There are going to be patches that are rough enough WITHOUT cameras around. Have a little respect, CBS.

2. The idea of arranged marriages is ... well, it's pretty barbaric. I know that some people think they work, but I just think about all those 12-year-old girls who were/still are basically sold to old men in exchange for land or money or livestock. Hey, how about this for an idea: You kidnap some people from their homes, take them to a foreign country, and make them work for someone else WITHOUT PAY. I'll be sure to look for it during your 2010 fall season.

3. Trying to hide your stupidity, avarice, and increasingly creepy voyeurism behind a cultural curtain is so, so lame.

CBS' "Marriage" presents itself as a documentary series about finding true love, a show that extends the Eastern tradition of an arranged marriage (where friends and family select the mate) into the West.

At least own up to your own depravity, CBS, instead of trying to make this into an educational experience.

4. Who's going to want to be on this show? The lowest, grossest, fame-whoring-est, most desperate people on the planet. So thanks for that. I'm not saying that this show is the only reason the rest of the world might hate us, but it's certainly making ME hate us.

5. This is yet another message to young people--particularly young women--that they are worthless unless they are part of a couple. As a happily unmarried woman myself, I am offended by the implication that it's better to be married to a STRANGER than to be single.

Even more, I am insulted by just how stupid you think we, the American public, are. Sure, everyone's not as smart as I am, and that's a fact, but I think you're underestimating our intelligence just a little bit. Well. I hope you are.

Is it that hard to create quality, scripted programming that does not reduce people to tears, force them to degrade themselves, or set them up to look like dummies? Is it really that difficult? Surely someone is paying you good money to come up with something better than THIS. And if that's the best you can do, well, maybe you shouldn't have that job. Not in a "we're-cutting-back-so-we're-letting-40,000-people-go" kind of way, but in a "YOU-LITERALLY-DO-NOT-DESERVE-TO-WORK" kind of way.

I'm bitter that the person who green-lighted this project is not only making 40 times the amount of money that I do, but also that this person is clearly NOT a person at all, but is likely, instead, a piece of genetically-engineered lawn furniture, or some kind of hyper-intelligent horse turd.

I will be unable to watch your stupid crappy show, CBS, on account of I intend to actually exercise my brain that night, by doing something like washing my hair, or rearranging my sock drawer, or doing my taxes, or cutting my toenails, or rolling your lawn. It's not much, sure, but it's a heck of a lot more than what I'd be doing if I tuned in to your channel at that particular time.

I guess that's all I have to say. I hope that I've insulted you with my words, CBS, just as much as you've insulted me with your ridiculous idiocy.

Suck it,
Mei Flower


arianna said...

I agree; that premise is pretty appalling. Ugh.

J said...

amen, amen, amen.

i hope you're sending this to network affiliates and papers around the country, because i'm sure that more than two of us wholeheartedly agree with every single thing you said here.

when is this reality dreck going to END ALREADY?! (except for the Amazing Race, CBS somehow did good there.)

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