The Critical 'I'

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Sunday, June 15, 2003

REALITY CHECK: OSBOURNES DECLINE A SIGN?
bloody hell have to get a real job
One of the early successes of reality TV (if you ignore the genre's ur-series of the '90s, "The Real World"), "The Osbournes" has been a hip view of celebrity disfunction and helped bring MTV some monster ratings. But this party might be over for Jack, Kelly, Sharon and the Ozzman, as the show seems to be losing its audience-drawing ability in its new season.

This article seems to isolate the lack of numbers for the show on the show itself; the mention of the Osbourne family members getting some media over-saturation suggests that the viewing public is tired of seeming them, specifically. But in reality (pun intended, thanks), I think it's as much about people tuning out reality programming in general. The bubble has popped. Advertisers are bailing out, and audiences aren't as enthralled with the shows anymore. I think "The Osbournes" dip is a harbinger of what's going to happen this summer, the time when reality shows have usually been strong. Outside of "Survivor" and a couple of the "Bachelor/Bachelorette" strains, I think it's close to curtains time for this fad.