Ex on the Beach is a reality TV show that is being broadcast on MTV. Its premise is a simple and straightforward one. In short, each season sees a collection of single men and women being brought together to a paradisaical location for a summer holiday where they hope to find love. However, each season sees their experiences being interrupted by their exes, who show up to either seek revenge or to seek to reconcile. Unsurprisingly, this results in a lot of drama, which presumably explains how Ex on the Beach has managed to have nine seasons and counting. There are a number of reasons that Ex on the Beach can be considered bad for TV:
It Is Incestuous
For starters, Ex on the Beach is pretty incestuous. Rather, it isn’t literally incestuous because reality TV hasn’t hit that particular low at this point in time, but its participants are chosen from a very small pool of people. This is because Ex on the Beach chooses its participants from other reality TV shows, which include some individuals who have managed to make careers of appearing in such projects. Suffice to say that this has made for tangled messes of relationships on more than one occasion, which makes for a very messy scenario to say the least.
It Appeals to Our Less Noble Instincts
Some reality TV shows seek to introduce the viewers to things that they never knew existed, while other reality TV shows want to induce a sense of sympathy in the viewers for people with very different circumstances. Unfortunately, there are also reality TV shows that suggest so that the viewers can feel a sense of smug superiority over their participants, which is not one of our nobler instincts. An argument can be made that Ex on the Beach is going for building real emotional connections between its viewers and its participants, but in practice, it revels in the nastier side of things too much for that to be true.
It Is Kind of Childish
Speaking honestly, melodrama can be pretty fun. Different people want different things at different times, meaning that there is definitely room for some melodrama in our entertainment. Unfortunately, while Ex on the Beach is certainly set up for maximum drama, that drama often comes off as being rather cheap and childish in nature because the adults on the show certainly don’t act anything like mature adults with mature relationships. As a result, Ex on the Beach can’t even let its viewers enjoy their smugness. Sure, said individuals can look down on the participants, but considering the childish nature of the show, it is difficult to muster much of a sense of superiority, not least because that prospect is rather embarrassing in its own right.
It Is Encouraging Derivatives of Derivatives
One of the more irritating issues with reality TV shows is their fondness for spinoffs. To be fair, this isn’t hard to understand. After all, if people like something, chances are good that they will want more of it. As a result, if people like a reality TV show, it makes sense for reality TV show producers to make more content as well as more spinoff content. However, Ex on the Beach is a step beyond that because it is focused on people who have participated in other reality TV shows, meaning that in a very real sense, it is a derivative of other reality TV shows that are probably already derivative of other more original content. Annoyingly, the success of Ex on the Beach shows that this kind of content sells, thus incentivizing TV executives to churn out more of it rather than do anything more original and more risky.
Ultimately, Ex on the Beach isn’t some kind of horrible show that will destroy the TV landscape as we know it. No, it wishes it was that exciting. Instead, Ex on the Beach is one of the numerous bland, not particularly interesting reality TV shows that have resulted from the pursuit of lower production costs and higher viewership numbers. On its own, it is fine and perhaps even a little bit amusing because there is a place for junk food in our TV viewing patterns. Combined with the rest, well, that makes for a very different story.