A whole 22 years has passed since we marveled at reality TV taken to the extreme via The Truman Show, and my, my, my weren’t we naïve back then? I mean, we were still almost 10 years from the train wreck that would be Keeping Up with the Karadashians, and even 4 years from the first Bachelor episode. Though we had by then voyeuristically tuned into The Real World, it would seem downright pedestrian when compared to what came later in the form of Temptation Island and Survivor. Today, I can’t come up with an accurate count of how many total reality television programs are currently airing, but several sources list at least 15 as ‘must see TV’ so the number must be well into the double-digits. And each year, audiences demand edgier, more titillating, more graphic content until we arrive at…
It was a simple idea. Take a man, lock him in a room and film him slowly go mad. That man was Johnny Teevee and he’s been locked away for six years.
But, as Johnny’s antics become more predictable, ratings start to drop, and his producer is forced to go to extreme lengths to keep things entertaining.
It might be cruel, it might be immoral — but it makes good TV.
Such begins the new graphic novel The Show, an 80-page, full color, horrific extravaganza, exploring what would happen if The Truman Show was run by Hunter S. Thompson. It’s a drug-fueled hallucinogenic take on reality TV and a brutal satire of an industry that’s striving to hit rock bottom one bad idea at a time.
The Show comes to us from the twisted mind of Jed McPherson who brought us Transmissions last fall, and who is once again backed by a team of talented artists who bring all the fun into realistic (sometimes uncomfortable) focus. Originally The Show was published as four single issues, but this week the team launched a Kickstarter to fund the trade paperback. That’s right, for the first time you can get the entire deranged story in one package and I, for one, couldn’t be more excited.
If you haven’t experienced McPherson’s storytelling previously, he’s brazenly posted the entire first issue of The Show HERE to get you hooked. And once you are, head over to Kickstarter to help make the graphic novel another part of our current, somewhat warped, reality.