Last week I got a mysterious email asking me if I wanted to be on television. My head full of bizarre possible program formats (I was really hoping for something Brookeresque like “Cheggers Plays God”) and wondering why they wanted me on it, I said I might be interested, and got an application form and a brief explanation.
The programme, “Eugenius“, actually turns out to be rather formulaic – it’s a reality dating show which pits intelligent, geeky guys against ‘ordinary blokes’ to see whether brains will outdo beauty when it comes to competing for women. I politely declined, not least because I already have a wonderful, beautiful girlfriend who I would never abandon for a TV show, and left it at that.
But then it gradually started to niggle me over the week… first of all the implication that just because I like geeky things, that I’m not going to be good looking? Alright, I’m not Brad Pitt or anything, but I’d like to think I’m not totally repulsive either. Moreover, that geeks only like doing geeky things and nothing else (for example, I happen to quite like watching football, and I’m sure plenty of other geeky types do not conform exactly to stereotype either).
Perhaps, away from the stereotyping, it felt slightly patronising, that television was going to be the only way I was ever going to score (actually, take me back a few years and I might have been inclined to agree). Or indeed, that the females taking part would be the kind of person I would want to go out with. Perhaps it’s just a general distaste or weariness for all things reality TV-esque. Whatever it is, while not totally offended that I was deliberately targeted for a show like this (should I be?), it still left me feeling distinctly uneasy.
I fear when the program does hit our screens I’ll either become a fan or totally hate and rant about it on this blog. Incidentally, if anyone reading this blog is interested in the show, despite my misgivings – I think they’re still
desperate for interested to hear from applicants; I was emailed the next day by another person from the same production company asking me to take part, unaware that I had already declined.