Good news, New Jersey. You can breathe a sigh of relief because it seems reality television has descended upon the Grand Strand and I’m afraid it could be here to stay for a while.
Last week, season two of “Welcome to Myrtle Manor” premiered on TLC. CMT saw all of the conversation it created and got in on the action with “Party Down South” filmed in Murrells Inlet last summer. Both featured scripted nuggets filled with debauchery and stereotypes. *Yawn*
Last year I wrote a fairly scathing post about Myrtle Manor and how most locals feel about it. This year I’m far less irritated by it. My only request is that we use air quotes when referring to these shows as “reality.” Here are a few fun facts.
- Myrtle Manor is a fictional place. It’s a television set.
- Myrtle Beach is filled with far more beautiful homes and neighborhoods than it is trailer parks, despite the image portrayed by TLC.
- Chelsea is not a mermaid at Ripley’s Aquarium
- The words “Trailer Park” was added to the title of the show this year. Why? I’m not sure. I guess TLC wanted to make absolutely certain that upon hearing the name of the show, no one could ever assume it had anything good to do with Myrtle Beach. Thanks for the mental imagery.
- Were you surprised Taylor wasn’t involved in this season of the show? The locals weren’t. He’s had some legal troubles. Good luck with that.
- While taping the current season, there were often shout-outs to Myrtle Beach locals to come join in on the fun at locations throughout the area. Spoiler alert, the cast appears at both Thorny’s and Fun Warehouse. How zany and spontaneous.
I don’t know much about Party Down South other than the negative reaction locals in Murrells Inlet had to it. I imagine it’s much the same as Myrtle Manor – a television program filmed on a set or in pre-determined locations, and with, at least, loose scripts.
It’s all good. Let’s just be honest with ourselves about the low level of reality in either of these shows. It was funny when Eastbound and Down filmed in Myrtle Beach because we can take a joke. We just get touchy when networks try to convince folks that the jokes are truth. Cool?
Photo credit: Flickr