Reality shows with bad messages—MTV’s “Model Maker” joins in

APAPAs long-time viewers of "America's Next Top Model," we know that weight is an important factor in the modeling biz, but MTV's upcoming "Model Maker" is making it the focal point of the show. Their casting site states:

"We want to make you a model. Are you up for the challenge?

"Women come in all shapes and sizes, but models don't.The term model conjures an image of stick-thin, towering beauties oozing confidence, glamour, poise and sexuality from every pore.

" 'Skinny,' 'no body fat,' and 'size zero' are the words and phrases associated with models. 'Chubby,' 'well-fed,' and 'big- boned' are not…"

The casting call asks for women who are between the ages of 17 and 24, 5'9" to 6' tall, and 130 to 190 pounds all of whom the industry would likely now call "plus size." Is glorifying rapid weight loss on young women whom perhaps aren't natural model types sending a bad message to the young and often preteen audience of MTV?

Self-aggrandizing celebrity reality shows can easily be dismissed as lightweight television or disposable garbage, but plot-driven reality shows set to deliver a message tend to struggle. And "Model Maker" is far from the first of its kind! We're not sure who has given the green light to obviously offensive programs ("The Littlest Groom" or "My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss" for example), but the following reality shows, among others, really bother us.

"Temptation Island"
Couples are sent off to an island with dozens of hotties who deliberately test the strength of their fidelity. A totally unrealistic scenario full of potential cheaters. No thank you.

"Who Wants To Marry A Multi-Millionaire?"
We get an icky feeling watching two strangers become engaged on "The Bachelor," but this show, driven solely by money, is even more unnerving.

"Moment of Truth"
Contestants win up to $500,000 if they answer questions correctly according to a polygraph test, such as if they find their husband less attractive since he went bald. Oh and their friends and family are present at the time. Sometimes little white lies are a good thing.

"The Swan"
People who have always felt badly about their appearance get an extreme makeover with multiple plastic surgeries performed only to receive praise by the show's host and their family and friends who can now barely recognize them and encourage viewers to alter their bodies for gratification.

"The Bad Girls Club"
Are you a crazy woman who disrespects her closest friends, has no morals and craves constant attention? You too can have your moment of TV fame.

"Baby Borrowers"
In an attempt to prevent the next Juno, this show forces adolescent couples to care for newborn infants as a lesson in abstinence.

"Exiled!"
Another new MTV show where the ladies of "My Super Sweet 16" are sent by their fed-up parents to foreign countries for a crash course in cultural experience and charity work as punishment. We're not feeling it. Plus we know these whiny brats will probably get a $30,000 welcome home party hosted by Diddy.

Which reality show really bothers you? [Jossip][NY Times]