Thursday, July 17, 2008

Jon and Kate plus 8 - Why do we all care so much?

Submitted by Dee - a guest writer.

Why do we all care so much about Jon and Kate plus 8? They are not movie or pop stars. I wouldn't really even call them TV stars. Their ratings are great for TLC but in the scheme of things they are really not that well known. Most of my friends and acquaintances do not even know who they are. They are not being followed around by the National Enquirer or have a gazillion paparazzi following them like Brittney Spears or Lindsay Lohan.

I am not sure what the answer is to this. It could be that we have become addicted to our computers and the Internet for our entertainment and this is just one more thing to read about, blog about and chat on message boards. What is the difference between people's obsession in chatting about Jon and Kate and chatting about sports and sports figures. Right now the Internet message boards are on fire with chat about Bret Favre's desire to return to football. People in Wisconsin are very passionate about Bret Favre and the Green Bay Packers. I do not feel that most of the Jon and Kate haters and lovers are really that passionate about their show and wait with excited anticipation weekly as Packer fans do.

I will admit that I am into this right now due mostly to boredom during my down time. I have no desire to get involved in Jon and Kate's life and try to end the show or make them more responsible parents as I have seen people chatting about on different web sites. I have enough problems of my own. After viewing the scale this morning in shock and disgust, I better start thinking about going for a few long walks with my dogs and stop searching the Internet for the latest on Jon and Kate!

From the editors: Tell us why you are interested in this show and all the buzz that is going around.


Anonymous said...

I am mostly a lurker, I don't usually comment. I have always liked this show. Lately at work I have found myself searching the internet for information because I just need a break. But I have to admit it is becoming an obsession. I think what got my interest was all the people that have great disdain for Jon and Kate.

Anonymous said...

A lot of people are addicted to reading about this because it makes them feel better about their own life.

Anonymous said...

I do like the controversy. Although at times it makes me feel like I am back in high school!

Guinevere said...

I think it's a couple of things. For me, the drama surrounding the haters has drawn me in and made me think more about the show and seek out info than I think I otherwise would have.

I started watching J&K+8 a few months ago and found it an entertaining and non-taxing way to spend 30 minutes. Plus, there were a lot of back episodes to see, which was fun - I got to see the kids a bit younger than they were when I started watching.

Jon and Kate are interesting, and the kids are adorable. When I wanted to talk about the show online, I found this whole world of people who thought about the show and about J&K very differently than I did. I got drawn into arguing about it on TWoP. I guess you could say I got "invested". Though I would say I'm not nearly as invested as the people who seem to spend all day posting about J&K, analyzing episodes for things to complain about, and (most creepily) following up on them outside of the confines of the show (making contact with supposed relatives, contacting government agencies to try to get the Gosselins in trouble, etc.).

Anyway, I kind of have an attraction-repulsion to the negatively of these people at this point. On the one hand, their craziness is entertaining. But they also kind of freak me out, and they make me angry because they are, IMO, so unfair (and often inaccurate) in their complaints.

As for why those people are so obsessed...I think anything about kids brings out the judgmentalism and superiority big time in some people. That still doesn't quite explain the vituperation, and the degree to which these people seem to have a personal grudge against Kate Gosselin. I can't really explain it or relate to it on that level. I've "hated" reality-tv personalities before, but it's not the same as hating someone in real life. These people have never done anything to me, and ultimately I can't work up that much energy to care about them. No matter how much bile I might feel for someone when a show is running, usually I've forgotten about them five minutes after the show ended. I would never (in a million years!) dream of trying to have some sort of personal negative impact on their lives. That is both evil and crazy, IMO.

Anonymous said...

Why I like the show? Her name is Alexis/Sassy! Actually, there's more than that. I enjoy all the kids and it's interesting to see them grow and interact with each other. J&K are interesting people (particularly Kate) and her strong personality draws me in. Since I basically like her, but think she acts ridiculous sometimes, it's entertaining to watch and see what's she is going to do next to piss the 'haters' off. (Not that it really takes any action on her part).

As for the buzz, I agree with all the others that there are unfortunately many people out there who have a need to get worked up about and judge a family they have never met. I say "need" because they keep at it even though they scream about how awful J&K, the kids, the production, etc. all are. It must fulfill some part of them. Kind of sad, really. I prefer my entertainment to make me happy and/or informed. Not depress and anger me. To each his own!

Anonymous said...

Be sure to check out the National Enquirer on stands Friday. Might be interested to know that the NE has been following this story.

Guinevere said...

I seriously doubt the National Enquirer would have any interest in the Gosselins unless someone (or some people) were going to them and shopping a story. An evil thing to do, IMO. If certain in-laws are involved, I would not blame J&K for cutting off the people involved entirely.

I do not think J&K are perfect, but anyone who is actively seeking to hurt them, whether they know the Gosselins in real life or not, is solely responsible for their own behavior. And it's pretty contemptible behavior, I think.


I agree. It seems like a lot of the information I read in the National Enquirer's article was just rehashed info from other sites.

sandy said...

i really like this show although i like kate less with each episode. i do think that she is a good mother but she seems to be a little jealous of her husband and is always making cutting remarks to him. (which i don't think is a good example for the kids). i would never want to have that many kids but the kids really seem to be turning out well.