Not In Real Time

Television is a big thing which happened to our culture. It created a vibe that you will get daily entertainment at your house. But for that you need to pay a small monthly fee. Since they wanted to earn more – they had an ad between the movie. Usually it will be 1 ad of 30 minutes for the entire movie.

Then they realized people were watching the 1 hour of content then would switch off the television when ads come and then watch the remaining content.

So they came up with a plan to to insert ad every 5 minutes and the ad will be of 2 minutes. So audience were hooked on their seats the entire time. It wasn’t feasible to switch off and on for 20 times.

And it tricked your brain because a 2 minute ad is something like – let’s watch it and get done with it.

Slowly they had to ramp things up. So they started working on ads in such a format that it would tell a small story.

Because ads got boring for people. They fused storytelling to sell their ads. They wanted you to watch an ad, remember it, discussit and then buy the product. All these happened for too long. And now the tables have turned completely.

They decided instead of having ads solely for selling, why not infuse it with the original programming so that the ads get your head subconsciously.

Now you watch a television program for which you pay a monthly fee and there is an ad break every 5 minutes. And while you are watching the show, you are constantly being advertised during the show too. For example, a lead actress will wear the saree which the advertisers paid for. Or they will deliberately talk about product – look these sweets by ‘so and so’ company is awesome.

Reality TV Shows

Now that the types of stories were all exhausted, they had to come up with something which will make you stuck for longer time.

The problem was to come up with something which is relatable, emotional and will make you stick for a longer time than any other programming.

There came an idea of reality shows where it will be normal or some selected people and the scenarios will be such that there is no gimmick or action, storyline. Everything will be played out naturally as if it is happening live in real life.

Few episodes later they realized people weren’t getting the hang of it. They started ditching such shows.

But they had invested a lot in this format that they had to make it work. So they came up with a plan. It will be live reality based but will be infused with storytelling and gimmicks here and there.

Because the dopamine in your brain is released because of such tricks. So they resorted to such themes.

Examples of live reality shows include; Big Boss/brother, dance and singing shows, cooking shows and many others.

Now in these shows the contestants are real and they are doing it awesome. But they don’t know how to sell. So a dancer will be selected partly on basis of dancing and partly on how well she can do stuff for promotion like crying, telling a sob story and so on.

Similarly, in dating shows – the partners will be selected partly on basis of moral and rational values and partly on how likable they get with the audience.

It is a reality show as in they are real people and such. But everything you see on such shows isn’t real. There is a lot of choreography and retakes happening to make it look like a simple one hour shoot whereas it takes 5 hours or more to shoot.

The Problem

A  common theme which happens a lot in reality shows is the voting game. Where in people at home are urged to vote.

This is partly to find the best according to audience and partly to judge how many viewers care enough because of the show – and how well they succeeded in their marketing.

A core theme is voting on friday when the show is telecasted and the results being announced on next friday show. But now, some shows have resorted to shooting 4 fridays worth of shoot on single friday and then letting the votes happen.

But it will be used to select 4 artist in the last week. Now the shows are shot per week like they used to be earlier.

So the interactive part of voting has become a full scam where in you think you are voting every week by judging the performances. But all of these have happened in one week way before.

Therefore many clips of the upcoming episodes gets leaked before the original programming. Of course, the leaks shouldn’t have happened. But shooting a month’s worth of content and then saying let’s meet next week, vote now – is all scam to lure in audience.

The question is what’s next. I think they would have to resort to live as in sense live stream. Or air all the episodes in one go like many streaming platforms.

Let’s see where will the television industry go next to fuel their never ending game of greed and what their next movie is gonna look like. Till then, you go and keep making something.