Did this show anticipate reality TV?
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Author:  Jennifer Lynn [ Wed May 16, 2012 3:06 pm ]
Post subject:  Did this show anticipate reality TV?

The more I think about this show, the more it seems a little prescient in one regard.

The whole point of the Players' show (and I know Fosse put a sexual spin on this as well) is to have their Pippin commit suicide by fire, to give "a climax unparalleled on any public stage." In short, they're sabotaging every choice he makes so he'll feel he has no choice but to kill himself in a spectacular manner...and in so doing, give THEIR show the big finale they want for it. And by extension, to wow the audience by this "extraordinary" act (notice how the Leading Player invokes the audience when he tries to guilt-trip Pippin into the firebox?).

More to the's hinted that this isn't the only "Pippin" who's ever done the show. Remember Catherine's line, "But he touched my hand...they don't usually do that."

So in a way...hasn't Pippin predicted the rise of reality TV? Producers who manipulate "real lives" a certain way so a show will play out a certain way for the audience? Sure, there haven't been any on-air suicides or deaths, but is watching a marriage or a life crash and burn in front of millions any different?

(Which goes to show how the only reality shows I have any time for aren't of that stripe at all...only the ones that have to do with talent and the arts.)

Author:  Brother Marvin Hinten, S. [ Wed May 16, 2012 11:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Did this show anticipate reality TV?

I do think you've got a point there. :clap:

Author:  Salome [ Thu May 17, 2012 9:27 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Did this show anticipate reality TV?

It really does... very much like Paddy Chaefsky's film "Network" where a disgruntled Network Anchorman decides he's going to kill himself on national television..and the audience gets caught up in the countdown and his total mental breakdown. both forshadowed this god awful reality t.v. fad by 30 years.

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