Not so long ago, it seemed everyone in America was talking about the decline of television. Critics said reality TV was killing both our minds and the entertainment industry. Today, only a few reality shows remain on network TV and most of those, like “Survivor,” “Dancing with the Stars” and “The Amazing Race,” really only bring in viewers older than 40. “The Bachelor” has been made into an off-season filler, and the rest of the trashy dating shows have been gone for years.
Even MTV — home to the original reality show “The Real World” — has scaled back on the genre, opting instead for scripted shows like “Awkward” and “Teen Wolf” after “Real World” ratings plummeted. Their most popular program and one of the biggest reality shows ever, “Jersey Shore,” came to an end in 2012. So here we are, in 2013, without any of the trashy reality shows we grew up with and knew so well.
To fill the reality hole in my TV watching schedule, I turned to “Geordie Shore,” the popular, British version of “Jersey Shore.” The show is set in Newcastle, which is described as a working class city in the northern part of the United Kingdom. The show is currently airing its seventh series in the U.K. It’s broadcasted on MTV around the world and is also available online for U.S. viewers. If you’ve studied abroad in the U.K. or are interested in British culture, you’ll definitely enjoy the show.
The format is exactly like “Jersey Shore.” The setup is simple: eight Geordie (pronounced Jord-ee) guys and girls have moved into a house, and they go out and party. Obviously, hook-ups, fights, break-ups and drunken antics ensue. In later seasons, they go to various exotic destinations.
The cast of “Geordie Shore” is really what makes this tired reality format funny and entertaining week after week. Charlotte, who has been on the show since the beginning, is truly not safe for American televisions. She regularly vomits and pees on other cast members when drunk, which is a majority of the time. They still love her though, and she really is the heart of the show. Her hilarious one-liners will have audiences dying from laughter, and maybe even make them forget that she peed her bed in the last episode. Charlotte’s on-again/off-again love interest Gary (also know as “Gaz”) has also been on the show since it started and has hooked up with more girls than the Situation and Pauly D put together. Vicky, the self-proclaimed queen of the house, has described Gaz and Charlotte as “Romeo and Juliet, if Romeo was a twat.”
Even with lines like that, it seems like the cast actually does get along. They call themselves “family” like the “Jersey Shore” cast did, but it’s clear that they actually mean it. A few cast members have left since the beginning, but most of them have been in all seven series.
If you’re missing trashy reality TV as much as I was, check out “Geordie Shore.” It’s available on most TV streaming websites. Start with the first two series, each of which have eight episodes. Their thick accents are a little tough to understand at first, but by your second or third episode you’ll be in on all the craic. And trust me, you’ll be hooked.