M/C Reviews 'Screens' Feature
"Must-See Reality TV"
Editors: Kate Douglas and Kelly McWilliam
M/C Reviews http://www.api-network.com/mc/reviews
'Reality' television ('RTV') - that is, non/un-scripted television - is widely acknowledged as the
largest growth industry in contemporary television. In its varied forms, such as documentary,
'caught on camera', and adventure or game show challenges, RTV has been prominent in
television programming for the past decade. The current wave has seen "Survivor" become the
most successful television program in American television history. Two other programs that
have been widely successful in Australia and Europe, "Popstars" and "The Mole" have
inspired American versions which are currently in their first season. RTV has proven to be
successful across different countries and age demographics, to the extent that all television
networks in Australia currently broadcast RTV programs.
M/C Reviews is interested in critical responses to particular issues surrounding the success
and interest in RTV. All papers should focus upon very recent or current RTV programs or
issues. Possible topics include, though papers should not be confined to:
- discussions of television programs such as 'Survivor', 'The Mole', 'Big Brother', 'Popstars',
'Shipwrecked' or 'Temptation Island'
- the documentary form
- home-improvement style programs (such as 'Backyard Blitz' or 'Changing Rooms')
- competitive real-life television (winning, losing, success, fame)
- strategy and sabotage ("outwit, outplay, outsmart")
- challenge and humiliation
- fabricated reality & 'authenticity'
- contrived 'societies' (domestic space, relationship building, social hierarchies, rituals of
island life, etc)
- television and testimony (disclosure, confessional, intimacy)
- marketing TV 'reality'
- RTV and 'casting'
- the role of the camera and editor in RTV
- immediacy and RTV (audience engagement, interactive RTV versus passive viewing)
Articles should be 1000-2000 words in length, should follow the format of other reviews on the
'Screens' site http://www.api-network.com/mc/reviews/screens
and should reach the editors no later than Friday April 13th, 2001.
Submissions should be e-mailed to the editors: Kelly McWilliam
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