Target audience - Sample Essay
‘What does the magazine article ‘My Date with Blind Date reveal about the ways in which the game show in constructed for its target audience’ Over the years, Blind date has become a must for viewers the age of 20 to 30 as it focuses on that particular group. The nature of the show is well-thought out in front of the camera but once behind the camera, it’s a totally different thing. Every detail is fixed and prepared before the show and later publicised to the public. But yet saying that, it is one of the most watched TV programmes aired on ITV.
And to have its reputation in jeopardy can have a major affect on the show. But to do this, a certain ‘Nicola Gill’ reporter of the Cosmopolitan Newspaper turns onto secret agent and makes it as of the chosen few to appear on the Saturday show. In a way of appearing on the show, Nicola has to change her image of a well-educated reporter to an enthusiastic appealing lady on the show. With this entire package, you need to look good on camera and adapt to the audience. That’s what Nicola found difficult and states “the most embarrassing thing ever happened”.
In the two stages of interviews, Nicola seemed confident and why wouldn’t she. She’s been pretending to be a temp and her claims “I’ve invented the perfect Blind Date identity: a temp who travels the world, bedding bums”. The producers decide to put her on the third and almost final stage. Judging by her appearance and language, it seemed this girl was made for blind date. Well! That’s what they thought. As the day came nearer, Nicola was cautious of the fact that somehow her true identity might leak to the producers.
Before the filming of the show, certain rules were stated to the all contestants. One of them included to treat the presenter Cilla Black with respect. The crew members in similar words said ‘Meeting Cilla is like meeting the queen. You must not touch Cilla; kiss Cilla; outsmart her; or say “Loral Lorra”‘. One of the most bizarre situations occurred when Nicola was about to appear on the show, as she was having a make-up done, the designer gave a symbol. Numbers were crossed and had some sort of connection.
It was later found out when Nicola was about to choose who her date was, when she choose in her mind the producers choice (Happened to be No. 2). This however, was not the case because in all fact it was the make-up artist crossed no. 1 and underlined No. 2 to let her know the choice. So again, the viewers at home get conned and tricked. This simplifies the attitude of the cast, it may not seem on TV but once on it, you rarely get the independence of choosing. This is what surprises me the most, after selecting her date.
Nicola and Paul, a recently graduated student from Nottingham, randomly choose a trip to the Isle of Skye. But do we really know if it actually is random. It may have one with the entire same card which till this day no one can answer. But on a mission to find the secrets of the show, Nicola asks the hotel manager when the room was booked. His reply was “the reservations were made weeks ago”. This made Nicola even more certain on ‘choosing the trip’ topic. One thing that annoyed Nicola throughout the weekend, the camera crew for the show were consistently on their backs.
“Every minute of the day is filmed” said Nicola seemingly in disbelief regarding the date. Talking of which, Nicola did not really pay attention on Paul as she was to investigate certain matters. One ambitious effort by the producer to set up a table for two. One hour was given to them with no filming. This was to attempt Nicola and Paul to get closer to each other thus producing a good date for the showing of the following week. Naturally, this did not work because Nicola wasn’t really interested in her date. After rejoining the following show, Nicola was caught spying on the show.
Nicola and Cilla were having a conversation on the aired show, when suddenly Cilla said turned round and surprised Nicola by saying “you’re not a temp. are you? You’re a journalist from the cosmopolitan magazine”. This caught Nicola into huge embarrassment not knowing what to say. When cameras went off-air, others looked in disappointment but the producer stated to Nicola that we’d found out 2 days ago and unusually asked when it will be published”. Evidently, the producer was thinking towards the shows advertisement instead of its embarrassment. What happened in Blind Date is what you’ll most likely find in other game shows.
In front of camera, they can be much as entertaining as they want but if you take a look behind the scenes, it’s a set-up. The whole strategy is thought out before hand therefore, mistakes or corrections on the show can be edited. On regards of setting-up the show, my comparison to this particular show is, in a way, is wrestling. It might seem real on TV although it’s match-fixed in terms of storylines. I think, one of the reasons is that if it were the real thing than the whole show will be unorganised and dismantled. It’s correctly asked questions to language are considered to be relevant.
The system of Blind Date is popular because it’s the only dating show that interacts with people and its expectancy of choosing keeps the audience in suspense. I don’t think it’s right to manipulate the audience though stating that, what can the show achieve by not having rules and regulations. If you look at it, it’s almost impossible to run a show with absolute independence. It would be compared to the Jerry Springer Show which has the authority to comfort from independence because that’s what they crave for. People tune in to watch Blind Date for dating purposes and pure expectations.