I don't know if I can blame the writer's strike for such bad TV or if it's just the natural progression of reality shows. Tonight I was watching Deal or No Deal because, well... I like the show. The next show was one that I've heard advertisements for, but hadn't paid much attention to. It was called, My Dad Is Better Than Your Dad.
I could only watch about 10 minutes before I had to turn it off. It was a competition between four teams - consisting of a father and his child (some boys, some girls). The first task had the children standing on the side lines cheering their dads on. But it was obviously more than just cheering. They were screaming and yelling such things as, "you have to do it, dad" and "go faster dad, you're losing." They knew they were on TV and they knew how important it was for their respective dads to beat the other dads. They didn't want to be losers.
It was a competition where the dad who came in last place was eliminated. You can imagine the look on the little girl's face when it was her dad that couldn't manage to beat any of the other dads. Maybe I'm the only one who feels this way, but it broke my heart.
The next competition included the child, so now there's the pressure of winning put upon the child. If these were just fun games that a father and child did together, I would be all for it. But when you put the title of "my dad is better than your dad" on it, of course the kids are going to want to win and have their dad to be given the title of the "best."
But what happens when their dad doesn't get that title? There can only be one winner. As adults, we know that doesn't mean the other dads are losers, but do kids know that? Especially with that as the name of the show. Would they internalize the fact that their dad isn't the best - that he isn't better than so-n-so's father? And how long does that stay with them?
And what about the father that does win? Does his son or daughter then think that their dad is better than all others? Is that healthy thinking for any kid?
I'm all for healthy competition, but I don't see this show as being anything but hurtful for the kids involved. Just my two cents.
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