There are numerous new programs that are introduced to the programming lineup every season. It is no longer about how a program teaches and educates the masses but rather how high the audience numbers it manages to attract and maintain. The barometer used to gauge a program is mostly done by rating the program and once the ratings start to dwindle, then the network starts looking for a new one to replace it. The entertainment choices are thus unlimited and every taste has been catered for across all television networks. The advancement in technology has made it possible for people to watch any program they want to watch at any time, any place since one no longer needs a television set pa se. Access to any program can be made through the mobile devices, laptops and tablets that double up as communication and entertainment tools. Thus the media still has a high influence in relation to the messages that its programs have since they are accessed by very many people. We have become a world that is heavily influenced by what we see through the media and these highly rated programs sort of define our lifestyles.
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Reality television hit the airwaves with a bang and since then more and more people have developed an insatiable appetite for these kinds of programs. These are programs that are filmed in real time and do not follow a script rather they are set to follow people who are normally filmed while going on with their daily lives. When the reality programs bug bit, the television networks still cannot manage to fulfill the needs of all the enthusiasts of this new entertainment craze. One of the programs that are keeping people glued to their screens is Desperate Housewives of Beverly Hills. It a program based on the lives and lifestyles of five women who are not only filthy rich but who lead the kind of lifestyle that many of us can only dream of. The program follows them as they lead their lives and seems to have no barriers as they are filed while in their homes, outside their homes, when gossiping and when having fun; it just about airs all the aspects of their lives for all who want to watch to see. This is the deepest form of reality television programming since even the private lives of the cast is aired including their spouses, their children and their relationship with their families. The program has shed light to the glamorous lives we all endeavor to lead and it is the closest to the real rich lifestyle that most of us will ever get. For the purpose of this paper we shall explore the sexist theme and the social inequality theme.
The women in this program, who are the main cast, live in the exclusive suburbs of Beverly Hills. These are not the ordinary women we all know. They are filthy rich people who have no idea what it means to have no many or to want something and lack the money to buy it. They have all the money and a high appetite to spend it on just about anything, including items that they do not need. In this particular episode, three of the women meet in the host house which is a palatial residence set on the hills with an expansive garden, a swimming pool and a tennis court. They start their day with a toast to what seems to be champagne despite of it being around ten in the morning. They then travel in their big cars driven by chauffeurs to a big shop laden with clothes and other accessories. They seem to have a good time laughing away as they tried on the clothes. The attendants seem to be at their beck and call and even offer the ladies glasses of champagne. All they seem to do throughout the day is shop and drink and laugh away the day. From their body language one can note that these women seem and appear to be happy when in each other’s company and they also enjoy shopping, fine food and drinks. From their facial expression one can clearly read their disgust of a woman who walks into the store they are shopping in and is dressed in a way that they seem to disapprove. They exchange gazes and laugh in a cheeky manner suggestively mocking her for being different than they are. On their way home, one of the chauffeurs hits the brakes hard to avoid hitting a child on a bike who gets on to the road and instead of thanking the driver for avoiding a potentially nasty accident, the lady in the car seems to be shouting at the driver for having made her spill the glass of champagne she had in her hand on her shoes. The lady even walks out of the car still shouting and makes a phone call and later on a limousine comes to get her.
The ladies seem to take their time when dressing and at first glance one may think that they were going out for the Oscars or other fancy award show only to later realize they were dressed to go shopping. They have on a lot of makeup and fancy looking expensive clothes topped with killer heels and big glossy hair. They display an image of affluence. Some of the clothes and accessories they shop for during their shopping spree show prize tags for dresses worth $4,500 to even $13,000. One of the ladies buys a diamond necklace for $90,000 and her overall bill at the till foe all she buys that session is well above $210,000. That is the kind of money they can splash on a single shopping trip and this they may repeat a couple of times a week. The image that they seem to show is that money is what makes them happy and thus they seem to disapprove of anyone that does not conform to their kind of lifestyle. It is important to note that this kind of program gives the local person the chance to have a critical look at the seemingly glamorous life that many of us aspire to lead.
In conclusion, the program does offer a dose of entertainment since one can enjoy the escalades and errands that the ladies attend to and the parties and all the glamour surrounding them. On the other hand it affects women and the young women the most since it portrays an image of a woman that the ordinary and average woman cannot afford to portray. The fact that these women are only seen having fun throughout the day and they do not work for the money they spend may send the wrong message to the youth and may lead to more and more women seeking for wealthy men to marry and not marrying for love. The men in the lives of these ladies on the show are always seen to be leaving home to go to work while the ladies only spend their day having fun and planning parties while drinking expensive champagne. It is a bad image since women do work in the real world for their own money and this image may be generalized to women as a whole and portrays them in bad light.
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