A lot of people will gladly defend reality TV to the death if need be since they want to believe that it’s all real and that it’s something they can watch and completely believe in. Brian Boone of Looper is not one of those people and it shows since he’s gladly listed off a few ways that prove the Amazing Race is not quite as accurate as people might think. While it does tend to hold onto a few very distinct and real qualities there are others that seem to undercut the whole reality of the show. Honestly it’s probably one of the most realistic reality shows on TV, but it still needs a little help now and again it would seem.
Suzy Struttner of Huffpost would gladly regale you with stories of how the show is quality programming and would even go into detail about how it doesn’t sugarcoat or offer up the same kind of glam that other shows do, and she’d be right. The Amazing Race does tend to stick to its guns when it comes to the main idea of the whole thing since it does want to keep its viewers and make them happy at the same time. The planning that goes into this show is insane but it’s done to make sure that the show is preserved in exactly the way it needs to be so that people can see what’s going on, understand why it’s going on, and fully enjoy the prospect of what’s being done.
For instance, the race takes a look at a world map and decides where to go beforehand, and then those in charge actually take the time to visit the places that are selected. There’s no going in blind and there’s no obvious danger that the cast members are going to be thrust into since that wouldn’t be good for the show and it would likely make some cast members a bit uneasy. That being said though there are rumors that some cast members aren’t made to audition but are instead recruited, so the veracity of the show does take a slight hit there since it would indicate that they’re being a little picky about who they put on TV. That kind of thing can lose viewers since it indicates that the show isn’t exactly taking the people that are best-suited for the race, but are instead picking their favorites based on criteria that might go outside of the normal process. Again that’s more of a rumor than anything, but it does open up a lot of questions that people would want answered.
Apart from that the show’s other little quirks don’t seem to matter as much since they take place off camera and don’t seem to involve the audience. One thing that anyone needs to remember when they watch the Amazing Race is that it’s a show, reality or not. There are going to be instances when things are added or edited in order to spice things up just a bit for the entertainment value and there are bound to be moments that seem more staged than anything. That’s TV, it’s a province of the show that isn’t bound to change since quite honestly it’s something that has been going on since the very first reality shows. Even documentaries have had to alter the images they’ve shown at times in order to really make their point and get through to the people what they’re trying to say. In this show it’s almost strictly for the entertainment value that it brings to the ratings by keeping the audience guessing and keeping them on their toes when certain things are about to happen.
Reality TV isn’t entirely real, that fact has been realized and known for some time now and it’s something that some folks still rail against since they don’t want to buy into the fact that something that has the label of ‘real’ could be anything but. When it comes to the Amazing Race though the level of reality is fairly constant with just a few bumps here and there that are manufactured and intentionally laid out so that the show can get the help it needs from time to time. In order for a show to be lauded as a reality show and keep that intensity and edgy nature that such shows are known for, it’s usually preferred by the audience that whatever they see on screen seems as raw and unedited as possible, and with what it actually shows this program is one of those that is enjoyable because it’s still one of the best when it comes to its genre. Is it all real? No, not really, there are moments when the cameras are off and the contestants get to just relax until next take, but during those moments on camera it’s entirely real.