In today's society, Reality Television plays an important position in people's everyday lives. The reality television programs of today are popular because of the variety of film conventions (eg. audio, visual and symbolic codes) and the values and attitudes used to construct the viewer's response. Two good examples of reality television programs are The Apprentice and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. In the episode of The Apprentice, "The Price is Height", wealth is promoted through the values and attitudes of today's society to construct the viewer's response. This program promotes that wealth is acquired through success, and success comes with long-term hard work.
Wealth is promoted throughout the episode in various forms. These include having the episode produced in the very successful big-business city of New York, USA, where much of what happens affects what happens throughout the US and around the world, the "Trump World Tower", "Trump Plaza Hotel", and "Mar-a-Lago" resort located in Palm Beach, Florida. If different audiences viewed the episode of The Apprentice, each audience would interpret the values and attitudes of wealth differently. If a mature audience viewed the episode, they would interpret wealth as greed. If a younger audience viewed the episode, they would interpret wealth as a desire and an ambition to achieve. The suggested target audience for this episode would be young adults, as the values and attitudes of wealth, would liked to be gained by those who are beginning in the business field.
In an episode of Queer Eye of the Straight Guy, "Never too late to celebrate", wealth is achieved through a person's area of expertise, where the person is most likely to succeed highly in it. Wealth has been promoted throughout the episode in different ways. This includes the expensive suits and clothing from designer brands such as "Prada" and "Levis" and the episode was produced in New York City, USA. If different audiences were to view the episode, each would interpret the values and attitudes of wealth, in different ways.
If an older mature audience were to view the episode, they would interpret wealth as a wonderful thing, as five gay men, are using their time, money and areas of expertise to makeover a straight (non-gay) person. If a younger audience were to view the episode, they would interpret wealth as a good thing also, as those five men are putting their knowledge and money to a very worthwhile use to improve someone else's lifestyle. Wealth can be compared in values and attitudes between the two reality television programs of The Apprentice and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. The similarities of wealth between the two programs are that both episodes were produced in New York City, USA, where most success is made and both promote how wealth is gained though success. The differences of wealth between the two programs are that The Apprentice promotes that wealth is gained through long-term hard work; whereas Queer Eye promotes that a person can succeed at what they are good at.
In an episode of The Apprentice, "The Price is Height", audio codes are used to influence the viewer's response. The audio codes featured in the episode, are used to make the viewer interested. An example of audio codes being used in the episode are the theme song called, "For the Love of Money", where the song is played, to remind the viewer that to enhance their lifestyles, money is needed. Audio codes have been also used to create an atmosphere or mood in various sequences of the episode, such as when a female and a male contestant is left alone in a room, sweet, romantic music is played.
Audio codes have also been used on certain people, such as Donald Trump, where strong, sudden and powerful music is played to make him appear more superior to everyone else in the Boardroom. In the episode of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, audio codes have been used to make the viewers interested. An example of audio codes being used in the episode is the theme song of the program, "All things (just keep getting better) ." The song is played at the beginning of every episode to promote that the show keeps getting better and that in the 21 st Century society has begun to accept the Gay community, as they were exploited in the past. Cheerful popular music is often played in various sequences of the episode where the Fabulous 5 (as they are popularly known) rushing down the street to various designer stores or when discussing fashion tips. Audio codes from the episodes of The Apprentice and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy can be compared to influence the viewer's responses.
Similarities between the two episodes are that they both have theme songs which serve a purpose to what the show is promoting. Both episodes promote different moods and atmospheres for various sequences. The difference / similarity between both episodes is that one is promoting how superior Donald Trump is as he goes about the business of choosing / grooming an apprentice to work for him in the creation of wealth where as the other has five gay men promoting the creation of a new lifestyle by making over cluttered and drab straight American males and bringing some culture and grooming to their lives. In the episode of The Apprentice, visual codes have been used to make the viewers interested.
The camera techniques which are used frequently in the episode are long shots eg. in The Apprentice, a long shot was used to show the "Trump World Tower" emphasis ing its size and power, in Queer Eye for the Straight Guy a long shot was used to show the Fab 5 in a Designer Store eg. Hugo Boss, emphasis ing the size and power of the designer label. Under camera shots were used the Boardroom of Trump World Tower whenever the camera moved from Donald Trump to the contestants in The Apprentice to show how inferior they were to him and when the camera moved to Donald Trump it would be a higher camera shot as if to look up to him, giving the impression of more power and superiority.
Close-up shots were used on the female contestant's legs and hips giving an emphasis on sexuality and also on Donald Trump's facial expressions. Bright lighting was used to make it him look 'God-like' compared to everyone else and slow motion shots on "Trump World Tower" to let viewers experience what it is like to have Donald Trump's property and wealth. In The Apprentice there were close-up shots on products eg. beer, obviously advertising them.
In "Queer Eye... ." the higher camera shots were on the Fab 5, the more prominent stars of the show and the under camera shots were of the person getting the makeover. Close-ups showed their facial expressions, capturing surprise, indecision, excitement and nervousness. But in reality shows the people behave differently when they know they are in front of a camera. In the opening credits of The Apprentice large graphics of Donald Trump and the contestants were used for the viewers to familiaris e themselves with them. The opening titles were in a large font with their names and serious-looking faces, zooming across the screen.
The sort of contestants chosen to participate in The Apprentice knows what they are doing, have good ideas and like to take control. In Queer Eye for the Straight Guy the person getting the makeover obviously needs to have someone else to give the orders and take control. The type of contestants chosen was the 'Expert', the 'Sweetie', the 'Loner', the 'Nag' and the 'Joker'. The selection process for The Apprentice was approx a ten-minute interview on a video tape stating why they should be the one who gets chosen as "the apprentice" for Donald Trump. These particular contestants were chosen depending on their stereotypes. In Queer Eye for the Straight Guy the opening credits introduce the Fab 5 individually indicating their areas of personal expertise with their names in bold letters and smiling faces, each with an object the viewer can identify them with eg.
a hairdryer for the Grooming Guru Kyan, a wine glass for the Food and Wine Connoisseur Ted, etc. In, the contestants deal with the serious business of making money and in Queer Eye for the Straight Guy the Fab 5 (gay men) deal with the fun business of the personal makeover of a 'straight' guy. No voice-overs were used in The Apprentice but voice-overs were used in Queer Eye for the Straight Guy to keep the viewer constantly updated on what is to take place when due to time constraints actual footage, as it happens, cannot be shown. In reality shows, no one follows a script so it is unpredictable and more natural and interesting to listen and watch as the show unfolds. Inappropriate language or gestures may have been edited out. Focus appears to be on sensationalism and the surprise / shock element.
In this episode of The Apprentice, the footage is collated to make the female contestants appear as sexual objects by focusing on their legs, tight clothing, cleavage and body movements and projects the males as being more capable and successful in business. So even if the 'camera never lies', the use of camera angles, particular shots and the way the footage is edited can play a huge part in influencing what the viewer thinks. It is all about 'how' it is shown to the viewers. The reality television shows of The Apprentice and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy are popular due to the values and attitudes promoted through wealth and through the filming conventions of audio, visual and symbolic codes.
However, the impact on audiences depends on how they are presented. Promotion of one form of success and wealth included "Trump World Tower", expensive suits from "Prada" and "Hugo Boss", "Mar-a-Lago" luxury resort, etc. by The Apprentice and another form of success and wealth presented by Queer Eye for the Straight Guy was improvement of appearance, enrichment of personal life and lifestyle and the two reality television episodes were produced in New York City, the hub of business culture and trade.