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February 1994


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"P.J. O'Connell (PA)" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 21 Feb 1994 11:16:26 -0500
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  Pam Wilson <[log in to unmask]>  writes:
> I've been trying to think of related precedents to this phenomenon of a
> producer constructing a series of relationships and then filming/taping
> them as if they were "naturally" occurring--a kind of lab experiment to
> see what happens when you throw a bunch of unrelated guinea pigs into the
> same cage. It resonates, in different ways, with _An American Family_
> (the pseudo-verite scrutiny of "private" life), yet also with _The
> Monkees_ (a group created by the show's producers), and similarly,
> there's something strangely akin to _The Brady Bunch_ going on here, too
> (the amalgamated family). Any thoughts?
      You might want to consult Craig Gilbert's account of AN AMERICAN
FAMILY in A. Rosenthal's NEW CHALLENGES FOR DOCUMENTARY (rather than Pat
Loud's and the Raymond's versions) before dismissing the series as
"psuedo-verite."  It's an imperfect series, to be sure, but seems to be far
less imperfect than some of the criticisms that resulted.
      No references to offer on REAL WORLD, but it seemed rather forced,
both in production and in content.  "Hopelessly relevant" would be one
possible conclusion.
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