As a literary genre of high culture, romance or chivalric romance refers to a style of heroic prose and verse narrative that was particularly current in aristocratic literature of Medieval and Early Modern Europe, that narrated fantastic stories about the marvelous adventures of a chivalrous, heroic knight, often of super-human ability, who goes on a quest. Popular literature also drew on themes of romance, but with ironic, satiric or burlesque intent. Romances often reworked legends and fairy tales and traditional tales about Charlemagne and Roland or King Arthur. A related tradition existed in Northern Europe, and comes down to us in the form of epics, such as Beowulf, which were deeply imbued with dreamlike and magical elements foreign to the classical epics. However, This is not that sort of tale:
Long ago “a crowned god of war” and “the little wise one” conceived a child. This child grew into a woman whose name , when translated into English, meant “the beloved, merciful legendary princess.” She was well educated and eloquent. She was looked on fondly by all those around her.
Far away, around the same time, “a crowned wagon driver” wooed “the unheeded prophetess” and convinced her to marry. Their union resulted in a man/child, whose name, when translated into the English tongue, meant “eminent, crowned, gift of God.” The boy’s mother thought this was accurate, but it was kind of a joke to those that knew him.
The man/child and the princess met one day years later in the area know as the “mouth of the river.” The man/child made the princess laugh, so she kept him around and eventually they fell in love. They eventually were married (after the man/child chased a demon into the land of “Ta-Has”). Not long after their marriage they produced a child named “Gift of an attentive bountiful God.” This child was lauded as the greatest arrival on the planet since the one they called “MC HAMMER.” Truly a great and fortuitous event!
Don’t know where I was really going with this but, I was thinking about what our kid’s name actually meant. So, I looked it up…then looked up the wife…then looked up the ME…then our parents.
…I am still dazed since the LOST “finale.”
“Pseudo-Reality Show” is a term that I have had to create to class a television show that pretends to be a documentary of some sort as the vehicle that allows the camera to capture the “goings on” in the show itself. This hybrid docu-sitcom thing has made me realize something. I believe that that the veil should not be broken if you need believability in your show. “The Veil” that I am referring to is the barrier that allows the viewer to remain INVISIBLE and UNABLE to interact with the show itself. These newer shows not only pierce said veil they erase the damned thing all together when they have Big Brother diary like sessions that expound on actions and the hilarity of the show. Another thing that these Pseudo-Reality Shows do is look at the camera in a “Did you see that?” kind of way OR a “I am so embarassed” kind of way. Both of wich are very effective in getting me to “share” in the moment. It is a cheap way to get me to like/empathize with the character. If you don’t know what I mean, here is a senario:
(Fade In From Commercial)
(Lead in Music Fades out)
CHARACTER 1 is discussing a topic with CHARACTER 2.
CHARACTER 2 says something that stuns CHARACTER 1.
CHARACTER 2 walks away.
CHARACTER 1 look into camera and blinks.
Did you notice that there is no dialogue in the above example? “Why?” You ask. YOU DON’T NEED IT! The blink by CHARACTER1 and the direct acknowledgment with the look into the camera that YOU experienced that with CHARACTER 1 is all you and the show need to make you, the viewer, relate to the CHARACTER and thereby making you like it.
This seemingly innocent device of making the viewer a cast member does not work on shows where the writing and acting can carry the weight of the plot while building attachment from the audience. LOST will never have a character look into the camera and shrug as a means to say “Hey you in TV LAND, That was zany right?”
New shows to watch that are good who fit into the Pseudo-Reality Category:
Parks and Recreation
Watch em and see what ya think about them looking at you like you are there. I find it great when its done well (MODERN FAMILY) comical when its used as sparingly (COMMUNITY) and annoying when its done every 5 minutes to drive home a lame joke (PARKS AND RECREATION).
I am sure there are more than these 3, but you get the point.
You make the call!