April 23, 2007
What happens to couples who propose via Jumbotron?
They decide to get a free honeymoon by sabotaging their own wedding and broadcasting it all on national television.
NBC's new unfunny show "The Real Wedding Crashers" starts tonight, and follows the wedding preparations and ceremony of Jonnie and Derek, who got engaged on the scoreboard at a University of Las Vegas basketball game. These people apparently have such hatred for their families and friends that they not only make them go through all the hassle and expense of a conventional mass-produced wedding, but also sign on with a television production company and a group of actors who cause unsuspecting members of the wedding party to ruin dresses, drop cakes, and generally be mortified.
Professional television loather Tom Shales at the Washington Post really goes to town on this one: "Right off, one wonders how the producers found enough couples willing to spoil their weddings for the sake of a cheap television show's even cheaper gags. The idea is that for years they'll sit back and laugh at all the carefully engineered mayhem and shocked looks on the faces of guests and members of the wedding party. More likely, if the marriage lasts longer than a few months, both parties will come to regret the fact that they turned what is supposed to be a romantic and momentous event into a vulgar farce."
Alessandra Stanley points out that couples' attempts to liven up a cookie-cutter wedding by playing pranks on their friends only emphasizes how bland and impersonal most weddings actually are. She says, "For many guests a wedding is less a joy than an ordeal, something to get through, like PBS pledge drives or Lyme disease." Most of the people I know, when talking about the upcoming wedding season, talk about it as something to be suffered through, and in terms of how much vacation time and money all those weddings will eat up. The last thing you want to deal with is some damn actor-cop threatening to arrest you for smoking an illegal Cuban cigar at the bachelor party.
By the way, shouldn't this show be on Fox or the CW or something? Tom Shales notes that NBC recently got its worst week of primetime ratings ever. Shows like this are not going to improve anything. If everybody would start watching "30 Rock", we'd all be better off.
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