Wednesday, January 10, 2007

NEXT: Filling The Void Left by Beavis and Butthead

Even if you have the most highbrow sense of humor, there is bound to be something completely juvenile that you find amusing. People falling down. Farts. Just the word "fart." Little kids cussing. Incessant double entendres. MySpace. Beavis and Butthead. Admit it.

Here, I'll make you all feel a little better...I think all of the above are funny. Beavis and Butthead kind of took the cake though, because it incorporated all of those so-dumb-it's-funny elements plus a lot more. I watched it religiously, and I miss it. Since its departure from the boob tube (huh huh...I said "boob"), there really hasn't been anything else that stupid yet still that entertaining. I've found a contender, though. I give you Next.

Not surprisingly, Next is another MTV creation. It's been around for a while now, but I've only recently started watching it on a semi-regular basis. It didn't appeal to me immediately, but it's since become a fun diversion when I just feel like turning my brain off. I wouldn't say I'm a "fan" of the show, and I don't actively look for it, but since it's on 75% of the time I flip on MTV, the chances of finding an episode are usually good.

If any of you are unfamiliar with this program, it's a dating show which features one guy or gal ("the Nexter")and five potential daters. All the daters are sequestered on a bus and, one by one, they each get a chance to meet the Nexter. If the Nexter doesn't like someone, he/she "nexts" that person and gets to meet the next victim/dater. Whenever the Nexter finds a dater that he/she likes, an offer is made for a second date. Each dater earns $1 for each minute spent on the date, so the dater who "wins" can either agree to a second date with the Nexter or take the money and run.

The action on the show isn't really what's so funny about it. I just find it hilarious because I have no doubt that MTV's target audience finds this show utterly believable. I'm sure that these kids watching at home honestly think that this is reality TV. In a way, it really is, considering that reality TV has become more scripted than most sitcoms. I get such a kick out of watching these cookie-cutter camera whores go through the motions of "real dating" while robotically reciting infantile pick-up lines and disses. (I wonder how much a Next diss writer earns? Hmmm...a job opp for me to ponder.)

The staged dating situations alone are good enough for a laugh, because they're just plum ridiculous. They're always so random, like spending the day volunteering at the zoo or learning how to make ice sculptures or building a fallout shelter. Apparently, dinner and a movie is passe.

If you've never watched the show, I'll give you an example of a typical episode and then you can decide if it's for you or not. I'm not quoting directly from any one installment because the whole series just relies on a basic template that gets updated from time to time. However, I wouldn't be surprised if some of this dialogue actually did or will occur. If it has, it's unintentional and purely coincidental, yadda yadda, don't sue me.

Nexter: **Smiling much too broadly** Hi! I'm Chad. I'm 21 and I'm a waiter and a musician. I need a girl who doesn't mind waiting on me once in a while and is strong enough to carry my amps to some gigs. I like a girl who can rock and roll all night and beg for an encore. I hate fake girls. If any of these chicks wears more makeup than Gene Simmons, they'll hear, "Next!"

Dater 1: I'm Tammy, I'm 19 and always horny. If this guy Nexts me, he must be gay. **makes limp wristed motion**
Dater 2: I'm Alicia, I'm 21 and I work at Hooters. The bitches on this bus better not get too close to me, or someone might lose an eye. **shakes fake boobs*
Dater 3: I'm Jasmine, I'm 18 and even though I'm legal, most of my dates end up with me in handcuffs. **wink**
Dater 4: I'm Summer, I'm 20 and I'm in nursing school. This guy's gonna need a doctor when he sees how hot I am. **feels forehead with back of hand**
Dater 5: I'm Astrid, I'm 21 and I'm getting picked 'cause, well, **fake laugh, hip swivel, points to bare midriff** just look at me!

Daters sit on the bus and make idle chit-chat and some catty remarks all while laughing for no reason. They compare dating notes and each explains why they will be picked. Someone makes a complete ass out of herself demonstrating a worthless talent or divulging TMI.

First Date
**Dater walks off the bus. Freeze frame on her while a bubble pops up with three pointless factoids about her, like how she can touch her nose with her big toe and that she is addicted to Gummi Bears. This happens with every dater, so I won't keep repeating it.**

Tammy: "Time to get my groove on."
Chad: "!"
Tammy: **Disgusted look** "Whatever dude. Have fun with your hand tonight, loser." **Walks back to bus**

Post-Date Interlude
Chad: That girl's nose was so pimply, I wouldn't touch it with my big toe.
Tammy: I'm glad I didn't wait all day for that piece of *bleep*. Chad, you can lick my *bleeping bleep*."

Date Switch Routine
Dater gets back on the bus. Everyone laughs and asks what happened. Dater makes some lame remark and tells the next girl it's her turn. Next girl says something like, "Bye, bitches," "I got this," "He won't next me," or "I don't care what this guy is like, I'm getting that money."

Second Date
Alicia: "I bet this guy can't wait to meet me and the girls."
Chad: **Looking at boobs like a deer in headlights** "Heyyyyy, how are you? I'm Chad."
Alicia: "Hi, I'm Alicia. So, what are we doing today?"
Chad: "Well, I'm a musician so I've decided to teach you how to play guitar while we sit on the edge of this active volcano."
Alicia: "Sounds great! Let's do it."

Alicia and Chad sit on the edge of the volcano making small talk littered with sexual innuendo. He tries in vain to teach her anything about the guitar, but she is worried about breaking a nail.

Chad: "Alicia, you've got a great rack but you can't rock. I'm gonna have to say, 'Next!'"
Alicia: **Makes annoying 'tsk' noise** "You can't rock either, so why don't you just roll over and die, *bleeper*? **Walks all the way down the volcano to the bus**

Post-Date Interlude
Chad: "That chick was way too high maintenance for me. I wait on people all day long, so I'm not catering to her on my day off!"
Alicia: "What a *bleep*. He needs to learn how to play guitar himself before he can teach anyone else. *Bleeping bleep*."

Repeat Date Switch Routine

Third Date
Jasmine: "I'm gonna rock this guy's world."
Chad: **Visibly pleased** "Hi, I'm Chad."
Jasmine: "I'm Jasmine. Wow, this volcano is really cool."
Chad: "Actually, it's really hot, like you. Better be careful 'cause it might erupt when you sit on it."
Jasmine: "Well, I'm hotter than lava, so I'm not scared."
Chad: "Ooh, alright. **Grins like an idiot** Well let's get started. Have you ever played guitar?"
Jasmine: "No, but I can't wait to get my hands on your instrument."

Nauseatingly contrived conversation continues. Jasmine unconvincingly plucks the strings a few times. Chad seems pleased for some reason. Guitar lesson ends and the picnic basket emerges. The two have lunch while sharing more badly disguised sex talk. Chad points out that Jasmine has whipped cream on her face, which she suggests he lick off. He gladly complies, thus igniting a minor make-out session.

Chad: "Jasmine, I had a great time on our date. You're hot, you can rock and you're a great kisser. You've been on this date for 93 minutes, so you can either take the $93 or go on a second date with me. What's it gonna be?"

A few scenes from the day replay, signifying Jasmine's thought process.

Jasmine: "Well, Chad, $93 is a lot of money.**Dramatic pause** But I think we can really make beautiful music together, so I'll take the second date."
Chad: "Kick-ass!" **Sticks out tongue and makes devil-horn symbol**

Hugging, kissing and groping ensue.

End of Show
Montage of happy couple. Cut back to the bus where the other 4 daters have banded together to deliver the final line, skewering the Nexter, the winner or both.

Tammy, Alicia, Summer & Astrid: "Hey, Chad! We wrote a song about you. It's called 'Don't Give Up Your Day Job'!"

Wow, I'm spent. I hope you all appreciated that. Writing one of these shows is actually tougher than I thought. I've been out of 6th grade for, like, 23 years. It's hard to return to that mindset.


Bond said...

Incredible.. they keep rehashing these show ...hummm $93 dollars is a lot of money!!! bwahahahahahahah

Writeprocrastinator said...

Damn, you made that show more interesting than it actually is. You should be in TV.

Lavinia said...

Hi Beckey!

I haven't seen Next, it might be because we get MTV Europe here. I'd love to get a peek of it.

I have seen Senseless and Dismissed, and I must say those are some crazy dating shows there at the M.

I totally agree with you about how some viewers would think that all this is reality. Its really quite funny considering that reality stops as soon as the cameras roll and people who otherwise never would have met are put in the same room.

The fact that its scripted to generate maximum drama just takes it to the next *lol* level.

We also get The Bachelor here. My god Beckey, doesn't that show scare you? I couldn't help watching series 1 + 2 and then the one in NYC with Jerry O'Connel's more manly, but strangely less hot, brother.

The way those girls just let themselves fall for the greasy studs & (trauma!) introduce them to their families in the final 4...its just too much. I haven't seen the Bachelorette, but the guy version imo fizzles away the women's lib movement with every 'rose ceremony'. haha!

Just when I thought dating couldn't possibly be more painful/humiliating.

ps I love YouTube too:) I always have about 5 different vids open as I pretend to work, lol. Right now Im watching every Hall & Oates video I can find.

Neo said...

Becky - I think I like your version better than the show. I laughed more. ;)

Btw, here's one for you to check out because I know you'd dig it.

Do a google search for "Robot Chicken."

You can thank me later. ;P

Peace & Hugs,

- Neo

Neo said...

Oooops robot chicken.


Edge said...

At what point does MTV decide to just show people having sex after a 10 second introduction.


scott said...

Have you seen the new MTV show where the person secretly uses lie detection software to analyze everything his/her potential daters say, then confronts them with the results?

"Lindsay, you said you've only had sex with 4 people, and the lie detection software determined that was a lie!"

"David, I see you lied about being a pre-law major at USC..."

That has surpassed NEXT for me in terms of entertainment value.

Les Becker said...

Oh, Beck, I don't have the energy it takes to get into yet another new show... I only just (literally "just" - as in YESTERDAY) discovered the joy that is Arrested Development and am now kicking myself for refusing to watch it before.

Turnbaby said...

God I love Beavis and Butthead. Is it weird that I consider it classic TV? Thanks for the Squeeze video. How did I miss it? Posted it up


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