Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Why I Love MTV

Did anyone see Fat Camp on MTV this weekend? Since the show was two hours long and they repeated it at least four times, chances are you probably caught some of it. Basically Fat Camp was an extended version of MTV's True Life: I'm Going To Fat Camp, but with a lot more hook-ups and teen drama and a lot less about the actual weight loss. It documented one summer at Camp Pocono Trails (a setting that bears a striking resemblance to this camp), focusing on five particularly compelling (in the MTV sense) campers: Diane, a whiny first-timer who is the poster-child for socially-awkward homeschooled kids; Marisa, a pretty Jr. Counselor who evidently gets around; Petey, a gossipy fourth-year camper who tries to get around; Braelyn, a mouthy Jr. Counselor who smokes, snacks, and leaves camp grounds; and Matt, a jock who was pretty boring, really. MTV is known for its repetitiveness. That's why Cribs is still on the air, and that's also why Meet The Barkers and The Real World still manage to exist. When it comes to "documentary" shows, though, I think MTV makes some of the funniest, most engrossing ones around: My Super Sweet 16, Laguna Beach, and True Life, are all endlessly watchable. But Fat Camp epitomizes why I love MTV documentary series, namely: Hilarious Editing Choices: My Super Sweet 16 runs on these, but Fat Camp had it's share too, like the Petey gossiping montage, and when they showed Diane rocking out to Blind Melon's "No Rain," blissfully unaware of her strong resemblance to the Bee Girl. Ambiguously Staged Scenes: Also known as "Seasons One and Two of Laguna Beach," but Fat Camp had a lot of these producer-dictated scenes, too, like when Petey forced two younger campers to kiss, and when the camp director called Braelyn into his office for his "If you lyin to me…" speech. Stupidity In Its Raw, Teenage Form: For Saturday afternoon viewing, nothing beats watching teenagers try to act cool. It's even better when they write love letters, like Petey did. Twice. Want more teenage stupidity? Check out their My Space profiles here. Smirnoff Ice wallpaper and "Fat Kid From MTV" references abound. What does everyone else think?


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