Yippee. Tonight is the debut of some singing show called The X Factor. I hear that it features some British guy named SImon Cowell. He apparently used to be at the front of some other singing show entitled American Idol. Apparently both of these singing shows are on some American television network named FOX and center around people's dreams coming true or being crushed when it comes to their vocal prowess.
Alright. I can't actually pretend not to know what either if these shows are but I can honestly say I only watched the very first season of American Idol which produced the only true pop star from the series (Kelly Clarkson) but The X Factor is different. Simon Cowell will let his dickish self shine through. He is free to be an utter prick to kids as young as twelve. He can sport his black tees from Baby Gap in front of the same fucking mindless drones who watch the incessant drivel that is American Idol except now people can get their weekly dose of public belittling of people who have no business singing for about nine straight months.
In short, I know that tens of millions of brain dead Americans will watch the lowest common denominator programming which The X Factor certainly is. It's a cruel program but it's also somewhat real. Sure, the producers are scouring the lines of potential contestants looking for those who are sure to embarrass themselves. They are desperate to find the person who is so oblivious to their own lack of talent that they will eagerly belt out two or three horrendously off-key lines to an already horrid pop song that Simon Cowell will be chomping at the bit to belittle this contestant who needs to be belittled but should probably be belittled in a more private setting.
Hey, I have no problem with cruel. I'm a rather cruel person but The X Factor is a semi-scripted attempt at reality competition television. If they have to show this drivel, show it uncut. That would be true reality. Show it without the producers coaching potential contestants. Show it unedited and unfiltered. It will always be edited in a way that's flattering to the judges -- particularly Simon Cowell who overflows with pretentiousness -- but I hope and pray that Americans will return to scripted television and this year is the year to do just that.
NBC actually has a solid hour of comedy tonight with Up All Night and Free Agents starting off the night and ABC has an hour both of The Middle and Modern Family tonight so ditch the shitty "reality" singing contests and appreciate the fact that creative and sharp writing teamed with legitimate actors is a superior alternative to a TV landscape littered with mindless drones looking for their fifteen minutes of fame.