The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Children’s Reality Shows
There is something incredibly exciting about reality television, for those watching it and those participating in it. For the ones watching, its just another show on the TV, 30 to 40 minutes from their lives to watch people sing, dance, juggle, spit fire, and do all sorts of crazy and entertaining stuff. For the ones participating it is an amazing platform to showcase their talent. For many participants whether they win or lose, their newly acquired fame and popularity is a stepping-stone to other greater things. But for some, getting rejected on national television could be a start of a mini breakdown. So today we will look at the pros and cons of children participating in reality shows.
PRO: A stage for everyone
Today reality TV has provided a stage for people from all walks of life to unleash their talent. One doesn’t need to have an uncle, dad, or connections into showbiz to audition for a reality show. They will be judged and will clear each round purely on their talent.
CON: Too much practice ruins a good childhood
Michael Jackson spent his entire adult life trying to re-live his childhood, which was sadly filled with practices and performances. Every parent wants their child to shine, the ones with prodigies even more so. But parents need to remember that their children also need time to just be regular children and be allowed to do fun stuff with their friends.
PRO: Confidence Builder
Children who are naturally shy learn how to build their confidence on a public platform. They get a chance to work with professionals like voice and dance coaches who help them hone their skills and also share industry secrets.
CON: Competition adds unnecessary stress
Though a little healthy completion is always good for children, the kind of pressure a child is exposed to be the best and beat the rest at such an early age can be devastating and life altering if the child fails.
PRO: Bonding time with Parents
Many parents make unlimited sacrifices to make their children’s dreams come true. From taking them to practice, working with them, driving them to auditions… they use it as an opportunity to bond with their children and ensure that they stay grounded.
Some parents put so much pressure on their child being the best, that the whole joy of performing gets sucked out and the child performs only to please and pacify the parents.
PRO: An international platform
For the truly unique and gifted, performance based reality TV offers the world on a silver platter. A child artist can grow leaps and bound much more than he or she normally would, if left to the usual way of things. A high profile and credible TV show can sky rocket a young aspiring artist to international acclaim. The world becomes their stage, and their talent no longer their own. It accomplishes their young lives’ dream of pop stardom.
Sometimes even the truly gifted can choke on national television from the pressure to perform and get it “just right” for the sceptical and often harsh panel of judges. Very soon the dream turns into a nightmare as young aspirants are facing judgement not just from the show critics but from the world at large and to say that can be a humbling experience is to understate the enormity of pressure they encounter. Not to mention the feeling of inadequacy or failure if they don’t live up to expectations.
The world is quite divided on the subject of the impact of reality TV particularly on children and teens still in their formative years of physical, emotional and intellectual development. As with most things in life, there are two sides to each story as we’ve outlined above, sharing a few advantages of going on or enrolling your child in a high impact reality TV show.
That being said, would you enrol your gifted young and aspiring artist on live TV? Why or Why not?
Let the discussions begin!