Volume 94, Issue 60

Wednesday, January 10, 2001


Traffic gets green light

Film adaptation a success

Temptation Island may signal end of the world

Buried Treasure

UK's Hefner loves the city

Temptation Island may signal end of the world

By Chris Lackner
News Editor

A rednecked half-wit named Dubya is leader of the free world. Britney, Christina, *NSync and all their little teeny-bopping clones, are at the top of the music charts. Someone actually gave John Travolta money to film the movie Battlefield Earth. The writing is on the wall kids – we're in big trouble.

Television is the key, remaining the clear and present symbol of society's imminent demise. Take, for example, Fox's new reality-based series, Temptation Island. The Fox Web site gives the following summary: "Four unmarried, but seriously committed, couples at a crossroads in their relationship with 30 singles who are looking for love, travel to an exotic location to test the waters of temptation."

Apparently, the couples will be set up on a variety of dates with the three single people that best reflect their wants and needs. During their two weeks in the magical world of singledom, the contestants will have to decide on whether they should remain with their old love, or give into temptation. Can there be any doubt that the singles will also be drop dead gorgeous?

In case you haven't noticed yet, the show is clearly all about prostitution. Thirty singles, being paid to live on some fantasy resort, with the sole purpose of breaking up the four relationships. It's not going to be prostitution in the normal sense. It won't be for money. It might not even have to be sex. However, the objective of the 30 singles will be to entice and sell themselves to the contestants. They will be prostitutes of fame.

Why? Because everybody wants to be a famous television star and Temptation Island may be the only chance for these people. Who do you think is going to get the most screen time? Obviously, the single who gets closest to each of the contestants. The entire show will pit the various singles against one another, each vying to be tempter or temptress.

And you know what? Television viewers will eat it up. People love sex. People love scandal. People love stories of conscience, love, loss and betrayal (as long as it's not their story). The show may push more boundaries than the equally absurd and criticized Fox reality program Who Wants To Marry a Millionaire? The so-called oldest profession is being reinvented for us on cable TV, whether the sex is for fame or fortune.

Maybe I'll tune in for the first episode, just to see how far we've fallen as a culture. Curiosity – that's all it will be. Then again, that's what I said about Survivor and I watched that fat, naked guy and his island puppets until the bitter end.

An exotic location? Thirty gorgeous singles, 15 of which are bound to be in the temptress category, who are engaged in a battle of seduction? Ignore my earlier criticisms – I may just be jealous.

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Copyright The Gazette 2000