Reality TV Makes Everything Better

Tab Director and past Editor TABATHA LEGGETT strikes back: ‘Best In Cambridge’ could be the best thing to happen in ages.

arg best in cambridge debate gemma made in chelsea Opinion Reality TV Tabatha Leggett The Sun

Let’s get one thing straight: semi-reality television isn’t new. Yes, TOWIE may have done more for Essex than Living on the Edge ever did for Cheshire, but this sort of show has been popular for absolutely ages. Why? Because it works.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I enjoy TOWIE. I even quite like Geordie Shore, and it’s no secret that I am obsessed with Made in Chelsea. I cried when TOWIE’s Mario found out Lucy cheated on him, I almost burst with pride when Gemma’s boot camp training started to pay off, and when I ran into Arg in Life last term, I punched him because I was so angry that he’d messed Lydia around.

Team Tab with Frederick from MIC

I don’t know what it is, but there’s something about this type of show that draws me in and forces me to invest in these characters’ lives emotionally. And it’s not just me. It’s all too easy to claim that these shows represent the worst about British culture, but with TOWIE’s season 3 finale getting over two million viewers, you’d be wrong to claim that people don’t care.

Ultimately, people love watching other people. And people love watching people with aesthetically pleasing lives even more. I was chatting to MIC’s Cheska last week, and she made the excellent point that people love Made in Chelsea because it shows real people with real emotions doing real things.

The only difference is that these people live pretty lives. The characters look flawless every day, no one ever mishears anything, and their mascara doesn’t run when they cry. This type of show edits real life, showing it without the ugly bits.

Still friends: Tabatha and Arg after their fight

And let’s not forget that we all love shit celebrities. Just look at how you lot reacted to Alex Guttenplan, Sophie Thorpe and Juan of Juan’s World: surely the closest Cambridge gets to celeb personalities. It’s a well-known fact that if you give someone a Tab column, their Cindies smoking experience will never be the same again. Why? Because we love pinning exaggerated personalities on real people.

That’s why Best in Cambridge is a great idea. If Best in Cambridge ever makes it as a reality TV show, we’ll experience first hand the gap between reality and an edited, exaggerated, prettier reality. And, given the chance, who wouldn’t want life to be edited?