Back in the early days of Reality Television, the producers tried really hard to give the appearance that what you were watching was to some extent, real. Everyone was shocked that Storage Wars placed items within purchased storage units. Because, as you know, storage units always have rare jewels inside them. That happens all the time. But it was fun television none the less.
I don’t channel-surf much. Most of my viewing is on demand. But sometimes I get the opportunity to scavenge the channels and last week I was able to come across one of the laziest attempts of reality television I have ever seen. Long Island Medium.
Long Island Medium covers the life of Psychic scam artist Theresa Caputo. Scam artist might not be the correct term, because scam artists are usually pretty good at hiding the scam. They give a genuine appearance of legitimacy. Theresa Caputo doesn’t even try.
Long Island Medium is a great show if you want to learn how to stage a reality show. Everything is fake. The settings, the dialogue, the drama… Even the people placed in front of her that appear desperate to receive a message from their long-deceased loved ones.
In the episode I watched, Theresa had a fake conversation with her husband about wanting to learn Italian. To accomplish this she went to a local community college Italian class where the professor just allowed camera crews, production lights, and audio guys to come into her class so she could attend, like any normal day.
It’s real though. Right?
She doesn’t even attempt to learn Italian. She stops the class without the professor’s permission by stating she is getting a reading. How convenient and unexpected. I know. Shocked me to. Who would have guessed? Perhaps the camera crew would have tipped them off…or not.
She then begins her shtick of asking the most vague questions possible in an attempt to find out whose spirit she was supposedly hearing. These questions are often called cold readings.
Questions that defy the odds of statistical improbability.
Like “Did someone in here have a relative die?” or, and I kid you not this was an actual question:
“Does someone in here bake cookies, by baking them?”
Because who doesn’t bake cookies by baking them? She might as well have asked “Is there anyone in here who fries chicken by frying it?” or “boils shrimp by boiling it.”
But what do you know, someone actually did bake cookies by baking them. Riveting television. She’s a genius.
My quick grandpa who was also in the room, said this about the cold readings: “Well you’re the psychic, you tell me.”
You would think most people would have caught on to that, perhaps they did, but mocking laughter doesn’t make for good Psychic television…tears do.
If there is anything real about Long Island Medium it is Theresa’s ability to take advantage of people who long to see their loved ones again. It’s a sad thing to behold and at times hard to watch. I assume those people are indeed real people, not plants.
They need Jesus. Not Long Island Mediums.
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