Jon and Kate and Hulk and Jessica and…yikes

So far as I can tell anyone vain enough to put their life on display in a reality series gets a divorce and ruins their family. I know there are exceptions because I can't think of every reality show about a married couple, but there seems to be 2 categories, those that got divorced and those who will in the future. These "happy couples" go in for the money and fun and fame of a reality show, and find they have to deal with the extra pressure of the fans, the media attention and their every move being dissected, judged and lambasted, and gosh, suddenly it's more than their bond can handle.

Who puts their life in this line of fire? What is the thought behind it?

I'm just questioning the mental makeup of anyone trying to depict their real life on a TV show. Are that many people really that interesting? I'd like to follow Sean Penn or Christopher Walken around for a day or two to see how they engage their surroundings, but two days would about do it.  Does the average celeb/wanna-be-celeb really need that many people to know how much they love to shop and cook and gossip about the people in their lives? Apparently so. 

Actors and artists in general hate these shows because they take away opportunities for us. Less scripted shows, less roles, less work. As an artist if the show added to the overall health of the planet I'd concede some of my jealousy because the show contributed to the overall good of the world. But it seems that even the people involved in the shows are poisoned by the format and end up without the family they had when the romantic vision of what the show would be, started. A reality show ended 24 years of marriage for Hulk Hogan,  3 years for Jessica & Nick (no kids) , 2 for Shanna and the tattooed guy from that band (2 kids), and of course 10 years for J&K (8 kids), and mere minutes for the many Bachelor guys.

What price to pay for fame, eh?

Actors, be careful what you ask for. Try to learn the lesson these shows provide. What thing in your life did you go after and have it be exactly what you thought it would be when you got there? What relationship, what job, what sport, what vacation…? It's never what you think and if you have put yourself in a position to have to sort it out on camera, doesn't it stand to reason you might not really get the lesson you need? Might you divorce your career early if you find a million bloggers denouncing your performance? Might you divorce your training if you get kudos from Perez? We rehearse for a reason. We learn about ourselves for a reason. We dig in and keep looking, and rewrite, and do another take for a reason. The art is the thing. The art is the focus. Celebrity looks like a path to glory and better roles but again, at what price? When we make everything about us, it's way too corrupting to recover from. Haven't you worked with someone who thought they were more important than the play? How did they treat the art, the stage, their fellow actors, the stage hands, the director and ultimately themselves?

The only people I've seen really enjoy and make the most of their careers are the one who go about it with an understanding that you cannot compromise your values for the short term gain. There is always a learning curve, and there is always a chance to "sell out." Grow relationships with veterans you trust, ask for advice. Name a celebrity who hasn't sued, fought for or demanded privacy after years of lunging in front of any camera they saw. It's a two way street once you get on that highway.

Let your art speak for you. Do the work it takes to get better, be dignified in your press appearances and be sure to be grateful. There is too much loneliness in the world and way too much in Hollywood, don't make your career your significant other, that spot is meant for a person, not a camera.

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