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From Duck Dynasty to Grey’s Anatomy: Reality Characters in Scripted Situations

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Entertainment.  We get it from so many sources.  It can be ridiculously real, like Dennis Rodman going to North Korea.  Or incredibly not real, like a group of talented high schoolers singing about their problems in musical medleys.  (Ahem, Glee)

One is real and the other is fake, but we still are entertained by both.

So, is there a right way to be entertained?  Is it wrong if we get some kind of enjoyment by real new events?  If reality TV attracts more viewers than scripted TV, is one better than the other?  Will all fictionalized drama be replaced by quirky families who need heavy doses of therapy?  I don’t know, let’s consult a panel of celebrity judges to make the decision for us.

An experiment might help us answer these questions.  Reality TV is filled with colorful characters who are sometimes more interesting than the characters created by TV writers, so let’s plop some reality stars in scenarios that only a writer could come up with and see what happens.

Kim Kardashian switches with Hannah Horvath from Girls.

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The LA princess is thrown into the trenches of New York City with nothing but mismatching clothes and a shrinking bank account.  Could you imagine if Kim was cut off from her mother?  Hilarious!  Maybe she would realize something about justice and fairness.  Let’s not forget.  Her father helped OJ get off.  A few months with no money, Kim might try to right some wrongs and attempt to convict Casey Anthony again.  I got my DVR set for CNN.

Honey Boo Boo swaps with Meredith Grey!

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The female Doogie Howser!  This silly girl with a scalpel would be like a savant who could stitch up any body part, but still had a difficult time setting the clock back for Daylight Savings Time.  I want to see some real, emotional shit come from that pint-sized rascal.  But really, any reality character with a scalpel would be good television.

The Duck Dynasty family becomes the new neighbors on Modern Family.

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This would have a bit of a Beverly Hillbillies feel to it.  I’m not really sure how the dynasty would feel about a gay couple raising a child.  Maybe a Duck Dynasty/Modern Family crossover could solve the conflict over gay marriage.  Hmmm…. I think Dennis Rodman’s North Korea peace treaty has a better chance at success.

The Bachelor girls swoon over an attractive, eligible zombie from The Walking Dead.

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Whoever gets the final love bite will live a happy zombie life.  They can’t get divorced three weeks after the season finale in this situation.  Now, that’s true love.

The Jersey Shore cast runs the government of Pawnee from Parks and Recreation.

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Okay, so the characters on Park and Rec are almost as ridiculous as the Jersey Shore cast, but Snooki and JWoww would definitely make some changes to the city planning, like a bar on every corner.  The city might turn slowly turn into the a mini Las Vegas.  But who knows, they could do a good job.  I bet you they wouldn’t come up with unnecessary budget deadlines (cough-cough, sequester, cough-cough).

These reality/scripted swaps might actually have some potential.  Network executives out there!  Take note!  Then again, if we fictionalize the ridiculousness of reality TV stars, maybe we lose a little bit of the entertainment.  Or maybe… I’d really like to see Honey Boo Boo cut open Patrick Dempsey’s brain while simultaneously falling in love with another patient’s son.

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