WHY THE EMMYS RATINGS TANKED
At one time, Americans held their breaths to see who would win the awards. It was topic discussed all over the place. You could be at the water-cooler, lunching at a restaurant, or out shopping and you’d hear clusters of people discussing the nominees and expressing their hopes for their favored winners.
These days, those conversations are heard less and less, and the lack of public interest shows in many places, including in the ratings. Why?
For some, not watching is a form of protest. For others, it’s the shattering of the fantasy.
Protesting what? What fantasy?
Many are protesting the injection of politics into their entertainment. For this group, they watch the Emmys and other awards shows like it to escape from politics, which has already permeated far too many corners of their daily lives. Bluntly put, they’re sick to death of politics, and if they want to know what’s going on, they’ll tune-in to the news. They are fed up with issues being shoved into their faces in every sitcom, film and show, so they opt not to tune in. Unlike in days gone by, they have alternatives, and they take them. This group turns to Hollywood for the fantasy, and when they find politics intruding there, too, they’re done.
Many live mundane lives. They’re not unhappy with their lots in life, but they enjoy escaping into the fantasy that Hollywood traditionally has provided. The glamor and grace and beauty.
For this group, they tune in to see those things, to imagine themselves in that dress, wearing that jewelry, those shoes, that tux. Having their hair styled in that way. Looking that willowy and graceful, all decked out and drop-dead georgeous, with that special someone on their arm, or walking down that red carpet, smiling that beguiling smile.
That’s the role Hollywood and celebrities played, and Americans loved them for it. They gave us a glimpse into a fantasy life that is not our life. An escape from the challenges we face for a little while.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that escape isn’t important. Imagine yourself sitting beside a hospital bed. In it, is your mother. And she’s dying. You tune-in to the show, and for a little while, you escape your reality and step into the fantasy. For a little while, your heart isn’t being shredded and ripped from your chest. Your life isn’t being shattered and guilt at what you didn’t do for your mom isn’t pounding you into a crater. Do you see the value of the fantasy? Of that momentary escape? That reprieve where you can just breathe and the pain doesn’t eat you alive?
We need those breaks. Those reprieves. Those moments of escape to regroup and reclaim strength for the next round in our life battles. We need the fantasy—and yes, we know no life is perfect, and all lives have struggles, even celebrities lives. But for this slice in time, we can forget that for them and us and focus on beauty and grace and glamor.
No one disputes anyone else’s right to say what’s on their mind, or what politics they favor. But understand that regardless of what you say politically, you’re going to alienate half of those to whom you’re speaking. That includes celebrities, who rely on viewers and listeners to support their programs and films as much as viewers rely on them to provide them.
Maybe alienating half the audience is okay with the celebrities. Maybe it’s okay with the filmmakers and all the support people employed by the industry. Maybe they don’t care if the ratings tank and the shows and movies go unwatched. That’s their call to make, not mine or any other viewer’s.
What is our call to make is whether or not we want to watch more politics or turn the program off and pine for the days of glamor, grace and beauty.
For this years’ viewers, that decision seems decisive, and that’s why the ratings tanked.
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© 2016, Vicki Hinze. Vicki Hinze is the award-winning bestselling author of nearly thirty novels in a variety of genres including, suspense, mystery, thriller, and romantic or faith-affirming thrillers. Her latest release is The Marked Star. She holds a MFA in Creative Writing and a Ph.D. in Philosophy, Theocentric Business and Ethics. Hinze’s website: www.vickihinze.com. Facebook. Books. Twitter. Contact. Subscribe to Vicki’s Monthly Newsletter!