Thursday, January 12, 2006

MTV's My Own: My Next TV Guilty Pleasure

On MTV's new series My Own, fans get the opportunity to find their very own version of their favorite music star. This clever combination of reality TV genres is fluffy fun that is just a little perverse as well.

Each episode begins by introducing us to the fan and his/her favorite singer. We get to see how obsessed the person is and find out the reasons for the obsession. The fan's two friends are also introduced. They help the fan pick one of six finalists ("narrowed down from hundreds," according to the show's narration) to be the fan's very own "INSERT SINGER HERE." There is usually some variety in the makeup of the contestants. While most of them look at least somewhat similar to the singer in question, others don't seem to have anything in common with the singer.

Things shift from the fan's home to an audience-free studio with three stages lined up in a row. The fan and his/her friends sit in chairs across from the stages and the six finalists introduce themselves. We get to see how the fan and her friends react to each person whether it's positive, negative, or unimpressed.

After the introductions end, the fun begins. The first portion of the game may remind older viewers of The Dating Game as the fan quizzes the contestants about the singer that they're trying to emulate. The questions range from the incredibly easy ("What instrument does Dave Grohl play in Foo Fighters?") to the "only-a-fan-would-know" category ("What is Dave Grohl's birthday?").

The next portion of the game is reminiscent of most of MTV's other reality shows. The fan's friends join the contestants as they engage in a task loosely related to the fan's favorite singer. For example, since Kelly Clarkson is from Texas, in the Kelly Clarkson episode, the remaining contestants had to try to ride a mechanical bull for as long as they could.

Once that portion is over, we then get to see short profiles of the remaining contestants. It's interesting to see how similar (or different) these contestants are from the singer they're "trying" to be. It's also a lot of fun to how obsessed the contestants are compared to the fan. In the Kelly Clarkson episode, one girl had met Clarkson on multiple occasions and claimed that they shared mutual friends. Another considered Clarkson her idol.

After the profiles, the contestant pool is narrowed down to three and yet another genre of reality show is aped. The three remaining contestants are sent to work with vocal coaches and choreographers so that they can sing and perform a song by the fan's favorite singer. Here's where the three stages in the studio come into play. Each contestant then performs his/her part on one of the three stages that each are made up to resemble one of the singer's videos. Some of the performances are halfway decent while others are so terrible that Simon Cowell should be mocking them. After these performances, the fan finally picks one of the contestants to be their very own "INSERT SINGER HERE."

My Own is one of those shows where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Everything in the show has been done before, often on other MTV reality shows. MTV has covered the subject of obsessed fans before on shows like FANatic and I Want A Famous Face. They've done reality-based dating shows before and in fact, two such shows come on before (Next) and after (Room Raiders) My Own. MTV also has done competition-based shows where contestants have to sing and perform (Making The Band 1, 2, and 3). What makes My Own stand out is the way all of these types of shows are combined together without seeming strange. Also, while there is more than enough material for an hourlong show, everything is condensed into one fast-paced half-hour.

While My Own probably won't get the same type of buzz that MTV's other shows get, it's certainly a fun way to kill some time.

My Own airs weekdays at 6:00 p.m. EST/5:00 p.m. CST (and sometimes late nights if you can catch it) on MTV.

1 comment:

  1. i want my own Dylan Sprouse he is so hott!!!! i have a picture of him as the background on my computer and i cant look at it without smiling at him. he has the most amasing eyes and lips we have the same faveorite food, color, eye color and the same lips. he is 17 days older than me. i love him so much and he loves my he just doesnt know it yet.