I’m a huge reality TV fan, but I’ll also be the first to admit that the evolution and progression of reality TV has seemingly come to a halt in recent years. Things have gotten stagnant and innovation has been put on the back burner in favor of pumping out another couple seasons of the surefire and classic reality TV shows like American Idol 6, Survivor Fiji, Amazing Race All-Stars and the likes. And you know what, it is getting harder and harder to get excited about a new season of reality TV shows when there are no new, fresh faces in the crowd.
Luckily it looks like Mark Burnett, the grandfather of reality TV and mastermind of such hit shows as Survivor, Rock Star Supernova, The Apprentice, The Contender, Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader and On The Lot may have come to the rescue with a brand new reality TV show! Best of all, I love the idea for the show and think it would make for great television.
Mark Burnett‘s newest idea is tentatively titled Independent and, should it actually get picked up and start production (which I don’t think it has as of yet, fingers crossed though), will bring the world of MySpace and politics to reality TV! The idea is to have MySpace users create politically driven audition videos and wage election campaigns via MySpace. A select group (no numbers have been released as of yet) with the highest number of votes received from MySpace users will be whisked away to battle it out in a politically charged reality TV show, running election campaigns, rallying for votes and ending it all in what will no doubt be a heated debate. The contestants will be competing for a $1-million grand prize that they must either donate to a political cause of their choice, or – and this is were things get really interesting – use the cash to fund their own political campaigns! That’s right folks, from MySpace, to reality TV to… the White House? You never know, after all, Sanjaya Malakar did make it to 7th place on American Idol 6, so anything can happen in the world of reality TV.
When asked about the idea behind Independent, MySpace Chief Executive Chris DeWolfe said “A lot of people think the younger generation doesn’t care about politics, and we’ve just empirically seen that not to be true.” And he could not have been more on the ball, which is exactly what makes me so excited about the entire idea behind this show. The youth (of which I still consider myself a part) are taking more and more interest in politics, and anything that can possibly further that interest is a great thing. Many of today’s youth have come to the blazingly apparent realization that the political climate in North America, and for that matter – the rest of the world, is not in a good state, and unless the future politicians and voters of the world start to take notice, things will never change.
My hat goes off to Mark Burnett for this, one of many fantastic ideas. I for one cannot wait to see the idea behind Independent come to fruition.