Matthew Winston - A tale of television schedules and loneliness, in the voice of a tired man that echoes in the gaps between the declarations from the TV screen. We are shown who we might become if our humanity gets cancelled mid-season just because reality TV has much better ratings




Matthew Winston, This Coming Fall, Pilotless Press, 2013.


A tale of television schedules and loneliness, in the voice of a tired man that echoes in the gaps between the declarations from the TV screen. We are shown who we might become if our humanity gets cancelled mid-season just because reality TV has much better ratings.

These days it feels like we are living inside a failing machine. Enter the two-room apartment of This Coming Fall, though, and you begin to see just how far things could spin out of control. Walk from one room to the next and back again. Hear each room’s voice. You will soon realize these are the voices not of some dismal future, but of a present still obscured under the noise of our daily lives. But listen closely to the dialogue between them and one starts to resemble the voice of god, the other the voice of the faithful. Listen for long enough, and you will see that it could be the same voice after all, echoing from room to room and back again.

Excerpt:
So let’s turn our attention to the wonderful world of television. The fall season may be starting next week, but the battle of the buzz is already hot hot hot! Which reality shows are going to have us all talking, and which are going to have us all snoring? Well, new on The Coyote Network for Thursday nights at 21:00, we have Plantation, in which contestants will be competing to last the longest living like real old-time slaves on a traditional Georgia cotton plantation. Last man standing will receive “40 acres and a mule” – one luxurious mansion set on a 40 acre estate, and “The Mule”, a special, limited edition black-on-black Hummer. The hype for this show has been intense, with the promise of live broadcasts of whipping, hot-boxing and sexual abuse sure to make this format an even bigger hit than last season’s controversial smash, The Camp, which is also set to make a return to Coyote. QBS, not to be outdone, offers a novel twist on the job-application reality show with Who wants to clean up after a millionaire? This new approach to a beloved format will see contestants compete to become multi-millionaire businessman Enron Hubbard’s personal valet. The network also claims to have completely revamped the aspirational talent show, Superstar Academy, following disappointing ratings last year. The new and improved format, which industry insiders are saying will make this the music show to watch, will place greater emphasis on fashion, style, and on the contestants’ ability to keep the media’s attention, no matter what it takes. Expect substance abuse, controversial rants and violent, reckless behaviour, and that’s not even counting that this year, every contestant will have to star in a high-quality sex tape as they all fight to stay in the spotlight. I don’t know about you, but I can hardly wait…


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