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(Cracked)   Yes it may be called "reality TV" but here are five depressing realities behind these shows, since even the "Biggest Loser" has trouble losing and keeping the weight off   (cracked.com) divider line 182
    More: Obvious, The Biggest Loser, Kitchen Nightmares, Extreme Makeover, television shows, reality shows, Vidal Sassoon, Mary Poppins, Goonies  
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13197 clicks; posted to FarkUs » on 18 Feb 2013 at 11:57 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-02-18 11:36:06 AM
In Kitchen Nightmares' defense: most of the places he goes to are in horrible shape. I've done consultancy and the 40% success rate optimistic. Most new restaurants fold, and Kitchen Nightmares illustrates very well why many fold. Folks who have limited business experience, only marginal training, and often relying on family to back them, it means that many places are just begging to be put out of their misery.

Going in: you need at least 3 years of operating capital. 5 is preferred. Without that, you are looking at no padding, no reserves, nothing really for emergencies, and you are looking at getting trapped behind sending your mortgage payment out with payroll, hoping to roll your liquor profits in behind your expanding food cost when something goes wrong with your distributors, or you see a pop in maintenance. Worse, many folks figure that a good home cook is an equitable replacement for a chef, and that winds up with someone with little operations experience running a line, and inefficiently. An owner who isn't in the kitchen or on the floor is even worse, because they often have no idea how to fix anything, or what is going on.

If you want to start a restaurant, and you haven't any real restaurant experience, then you are better off throwing money into the street or simply going to Vegas and stuffing it down the thong of a barely conscious stripper.

You go in with a plan. You go in with a concept, you go in with partners who have complimentary skills, and you run things tight. That means longer hours for you maybe, but you likewise need time OUT of the kitchen and off the floor, or you will drive yourself nuts.

Ramsey is doing triage for these places. And many, no matter what you do, aren't going to make it, because the owners are ill suited for the business, and having done this work, it's hard to get folks to realize what it takes to run a successful restaurant. Some, simply don't have it. Kitchen Nightmares is taking folks who have often little business sense, and many have terrible taste and low skills, and who've limped along over the years, and are in the final stages of decline, and he props them up for a few more months, but without addressing the real ills, and instead hoping that a gimmick will revitalize their business, folks are going to fail again. The market is just too competitive right now to even entertain shoddy practices.

My partner and I had maybe a 50% rate for saving businesses that consulted with us, because you can leave all the manuals, you can jigger with the ordering, distributors, and menu, but in the end, folks often fall right back into the practices that got them into trouble in the first place. In the end, you can only show folks the path, and it's up to them to follow it. And most folks who get into the business, do so because THEY know best. And often that surety of purpose is what gets them into trouble. Well, that and absolutely no business plan, ginormous menus that serve little purpose, and a lack of anything looking like regular maintenance...
 
2013-02-18 12:01:11 PM
Everything you ever wanted to know about Reality TV summed up in this poster...

www.kzoz.com
 
2013-02-18 12:08:20 PM
I knew most of that already, except for the part where Storage Wars was originally supposed to be about the people whose lockers those were. That's the reason I can't bear to watch Property Wars; the original owners just have too much presence even by not being there.

Heck, I poked around after reading, apparently outside Storage Wars, sometimes the original owners show up at the auctions to try and buy their own lockers back. Or beg the others not to bid. Or threaten the people that do buy them.
 
2013-02-18 12:17:45 PM

hubiestubert: Worse, many folks figure that a good home cook is an equitable replacement for a chef, and that winds up with someone with little operations experience running a line, and inefficiently.


I'm a pretty good "home" cook, but having worked in restaurants before, I know I don't have the speed & efficiency to hack it in the "free market". I think anyone who wants to own & run a dining establishment of any kind should work in the industry for a bit, just to see if that life is for them...

/ worked as a dishwasher & prep cook in the late '80s
// didn't have the kitchen skills to move beyond that...
 
2013-02-18 12:25:01 PM

Gosling: I knew most of that already, except for the part where Storage Wars was originally supposed to be about the people whose lockers those were. That's the reason I can't bear to watch Property Wars; the original owners just have too much presence even by not being there.

Heck, I poked around after reading, apparently outside Storage Wars, sometimes the original owners show up at the auctions to try and buy their own lockers back. Or beg the others not to bid. Or threaten the people that do buy them.


Damn, that would have made a good episode of Storage Wars. Hester sleeps with the fishes.
 
2013-02-18 12:34:11 PM
5. Everyone involved will end up living in a van down by the river
 
2013-02-18 12:35:26 PM
Thank you Chef Ramsey for buy me all that new expensive equipment and remodeling my dining room. No, I won't sell this place and get the hell out of the food business where the farking profit margins are razor farking thin, no way, thanks again.
 
2013-02-18 12:36:33 PM
It isn't too surprising people on the Biggest Loser, who haven't been able to eat healthy for 20-60 years can't change their habits in 8 weeks.
 
kab
2013-02-18 12:39:04 PM
#6.  Nearly all of it is staged, scripted, or edited heavily enough to make it seem scripted anyhow.
 
2013-02-18 12:40:53 PM
There's been about 5 successful Biggest Loser contestants, all the ones you see out promoting products after they lost weight.

The rest are really ... wait for it ... losers.
 
2013-02-18 12:41:15 PM
I know pretty much every reality show is staged to some degree or another. Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end. Bar Rescue I do enjoy but I still try to figure out what is staged and isnt.
 
2013-02-18 12:43:07 PM

hubiestubert: If you want to start a restaurant, and you haven't any real restaurant experience, then you are better off throwing money into the street or simply going to Vegas and stuffing it down the thong of a barely conscious stripper.

You go in with a plan. You go in with a concept, you go in with partners who have complimentary skills, and you run things tight. That means longer hours for you maybe, but you likewise need time OUT of the kitchen and off the floor, or you will drive yourself nuts.


My wife does purchasing for a casino so she knows many of the food reps.  There is a location here in town that has had multiple different restaurants over the years.  Each one failing within the first year.

She was talking with her Sysco rep one day about that location because we had seen a sign that said there was a new restaurant coming soon to that location.  The new owners had called him requesting assistance with getting things set up.

He asked them the standard questions:

What is your style of food
What is your menu
What is your price point
Who is cooking your food

They were three weeks out from opening a new restaurant and could not answer any of the questions.  They were building a restaurant without knowing if it was to be Mexican, Chinese, Italian, Southern, what they were going to serve, how much to charge for it, and who would actually prepare the food.

They didn't last long.

There is another restaurant location by a major shopping district.  In the last 6 years there have been at least 5 different businesses there.
 
2013-02-18 12:44:31 PM
Why is reality TV nothing but contrived situations?
 
2013-02-18 12:45:13 PM

ifarkthereforiam: Why is reality TV nothing but contrived situations?


Because watching people sit in a cubicle browse the internet would make for really boring tv.
 
2013-02-18 12:45:35 PM
I am shocked, shocked I tell you, that the free cars that Oprah gave away weren't free!  Seriously, the fact that you have to pay taxes on anything you win on television dates back to "The Price Is Right" circa 1965.
 
2013-02-18 12:46:17 PM

LeroyBourne: Thank you Chef Ramsey for buy me all that new expensive equipment and remodeling my dining room. No, I won't sell this place and get the hell out of the food business where the farking profit margins are razor farking thin, no way, thanks again.


I noted in a previous thread, he didn't give remodels out in the UK version and the save rate was about the same. He tends to take restaurants that are way too far gone for a remodel to break them even or in some cases even be done at all. Basically the remodel is enough to make sure a restaurant doesn't shut its doors DURING FILMING. Which did happen a couple times in the UK, to D-Place and Piccolo Teatro.
 
2013-02-18 12:50:34 PM
One benefit to Biggest Loser is that it shows people that anyone can lose weight. It may be hard and uncomfortable, but anyone can shed pounds.

I'm always surprised when someone in some forum states that losing weight for them is an impossible task. They say how they ate less and exercised more, never lost the weight, and therefore it is impossible for them to lose weight. This show at least demonstrates that someone's weight is an indication of their lifestyle and by changing behaviors they can lose weight.
 
2013-02-18 12:52:01 PM
Did they really just b*tch about being given a new car because there are taxes?
 
2013-02-18 12:52:31 PM

warrenn: One benefit to Biggest Loser is that it shows people that anyone can lose weight. It may be hard and uncomfortable, but anyone can shed pounds.


Just quit your job and never work again and live in a special diet/exercise institution and you too can lose the weight and keep it off!
 
2013-02-18 12:57:05 PM

groppet: Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end.


Really? Most of it seems pretty plausible to me. What sets it off?
 
2013-02-18 12:58:09 PM

Gosling: LeroyBourne: Thank you Chef Ramsey for buy me all that new expensive equipment and remodeling my dining room. No, I won't sell this place and get the hell out of the food business where the farking profit margins are razor farking thin, no way, thanks again.

I noted in a previous thread, he didn't give remodels out in the UK version and the save rate was about the same. He tends to take restaurants that are way too far gone for a remodel to break them even or in some cases even be done at all. Basically the remodel is enough to make sure a restaurant doesn't shut its doors DURING FILMING. Which did happen a couple times in the UK, to D-Place and Piccolo Teatro.




I've only seen a few eps of the BBC version at my brother's place. I've noticed he doesn't yell, he talks rationally to them about menu design, food costs etc. Nothing like the US version. I've never seen him remodel anything or buy them anything in the BBC version, but like I said I've only seen a few eps, but I do like it much better. The US version just seems like a band-aid solution to a slit throat, not really taking care of the problem.
 
2013-02-18 12:58:59 PM
Is Chumlee's salaray of $25,000 an episode of Pawn Stars in there? If not it should be.
 
2013-02-18 12:59:11 PM

warrenn: One benefit to Biggest Loser is that it shows people that anyone can lose weight. It may be hard and uncomfortable, but anyone can shed pounds.

I'm always surprised when someone in some forum states that losing weight for them is an impossible task. They say how they ate less and exercised more, never lost the weight, and therefore it is impossible for them to lose weight. This show at least demonstrates that someone's weight is an indication of their lifestyle and by changing behaviors they can lose weight.


Dude. They lived to lose weight 24/7 for as long as they were on the show in a specially designed weight losing facility. Getting back to your 9-5 and having to live in your car to take the kids to school and soccer practice cuts into gym and food prep time.
 
2013-02-18 12:59:28 PM

YixilTesiphon: groppet: Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end.

Really? Most of it seems pretty plausible to me. What sets it off?


It strikes me as staged, too.  Just the reactions of the people mostly.  Especially the employee that is f*cking up.  They play right into all the predictable righteous indignation of the host and the owner of the establishment.
 
2013-02-18 12:59:32 PM
the contestents of the biggest loser that have been able to keep it off have often become personal trainers themselves.
 
2013-02-18 01:01:17 PM

warrenn: One benefit to Biggest Loser is that it shows people that anyone can lose weight. It may be hard and uncomfortable, but anyone can shed pounds.

I'm always surprised when someone in some forum states that losing weight for them is an impossible task. They say how they ate less and exercised more, never lost the weight, and therefore it is impossible for them to lose weight. This show at least demonstrates that someone's weight is an indication of their lifestyle and by changing behaviors they can lose weight.


That is what pisses me off about The Biggest Loser.  I went from 500lbs to 250lbs (I'm 6'3") and like 99.9% of 'Murricans I didnt have special 24/7 training facility where I could put my life on hold for a couple of months and lose weight.  And then these assfaces go and put it back on again.
 
2013-02-18 01:02:46 PM
realities-behind-these-shows-since-even-Biggest-Loser-has-trouble-losi ng-keeping-weight-off&new=1#c82581208" title="Quote" class="quoteComment" style="color: rgb(61, 61, 175); text-decoration: initial; -webkit-tap-highlight-color: rgb(255, 94, 153); background-image: url(http://img.fark.net/images/2012/site/commentSprite.png); background-color: transparent; width: 16px; height: 16px; text-indent: -9999px; display: inline-block; background-position: 0px -32px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">http://www.fark.com/comments/7598733/Yes-it-may-be-called- reality-TV-b ut-here-are-5-depressing-realities-behind-these-shows-since-even-Bigge st-Loser-has-trouble-losing-keeping-weight-off&new=1#c82581208" title="Edit/unIgnore User" class="ignUser " style="color: rgb(61, 61, 61) !important; text-decoration: initial; -webkit-tap-highlight-color: rgb(255, 94, 153); background-image: url(http://img.fark.net/images/2012/site/commentSprite.png); background-color: transparent; width: 16px; height: 16px; text-indent: -9999px; display: inline-block; background-position: 0px -16px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">I know pretty much every reality show is staged to some degree or another. Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end. Bar Rescue I do enjoy but I still try to figure out what is staged and isnt
 
2013-02-18 01:05:40 PM
Since Gordon Ramsay was brought up, it's also worth noting the Hell's Kitchen winners never get the position at the restaurant that was promised at the beginning of each season. He'll offer a position for the executive chef at whatever restaurant, but the job usually ends up being assistant to the executive chef, if that. Season 7 winner Holli got robbed of her prize completely when she was denied a UK Visa, something you'd have thought Ramsay and the show's producers would has sussed out before airing the episodes.
 
2013-02-18 01:06:27 PM
Also in Ramseys defense, the first 2 seasons the article quoted was when the economy tanked. The percentages, while still awful, shot way up after that. Incompetence plus a bad economy? Of course they didn't have a chance.
 
2013-02-18 01:06:43 PM

The Billdozer: That is what pisses me off about The Biggest Loser. I went from 500lbs to 250lbs (I'm 6'3") and like 99.9% of 'Murricans I didnt have special 24/7 training facility where I could put my life on hold for a couple of months and lose weight. And then these assfaces go and put it back on again.


The Biggest Loser people never got help figuring out how to maintain a healthy lifestyle in a regular workaday familyaday life and that's precisely why they have such a hard time keeping it off.  And it's why so many people fail after rehab.  It's a hell of a lot easier to avoid bad things while separated from the real world.
 
2013-02-18 01:07:58 PM
I thought the depressing reality of reality TV was that people actually watch reality TV.

/I don't even own a TV
 
2013-02-18 01:08:01 PM

weirdneighbour: realities-behind-these-shows-since-even-Biggest-Loser-has-trouble-los i ng-keeping-weight-off&new=1#c82581208" title="Quote" class="quoteComment" style="color: rgb(61, 61, 175); text-decoration: initial; -webkit-tap-highlight-color: rgb(255, 94, 153); background-image: url(http://img.fark.net/images/2012/site/commentSprite.png); background-color: transparent; width: 16px; height: 16px; text-indent: -9999px; display: inline-block; background-position: 0px -32px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">http://www.fark.com/comments/7598733/Yes-it-may-be-called- reality-TV-b ut-here-are-5-depressing-realities-behind-these-shows-since-even-Bigge st-Loser-has-trouble-losing-keeping-weight-off&new=1#c82581208" title="Edit/unIgnore User" class="ignUser " style="color: rgb(61, 61, 61) !important; text-decoration: initial; -webkit-tap-highlight-color: rgb(255, 94, 153); background-image: url(http://img.fark.net/images/2012/site/commentSprite.png); background-color: transparent; width: 16px; height: 16px; text-indent: -9999px; display: inline-block; background-position: 0px -16px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">I know pretty much every reality show is staged to some degree or another. Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end. Bar Rescue I do enjoy but I still try to figure out what is staged and isnt


Yikes!
 
2013-02-18 01:09:24 PM

The Muthaship: Did they really just b*tch about being given a new car because there are taxes?


No one was biatching really.  The article is just listing things people may not have realized when it comes to stuff you see on reality TV.  Getting a free car and then owing $7,000 in taxes because the value of the car is considered income isn't something everyone realizes.  Worst case is that you can always sell the car, or sell your old car, to pay the taxes and have something left over. But obviously not everyone who breaks down weeping in Oprah's studio has an extra 7K to shell out to keep the vehicle.
 
2013-02-18 01:10:19 PM
http://www.fark.com/comments/7598733/82581533#c82581533" target=_blank data-cke-saved-href="http://www.fark.com/comments/7598733/82581533#c8 2581533">YixilTesiphon: groppet: Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end.

Really? Most of it seems pretty plausible to me. What sets it off?


Well it seems to be re enacted heavily. There was one in vegas a few weeks ago where there was a crooked somiler (sp) (wine guy) was taking bribes, pushing crappy wine on people and all kinds of shady things. He had a mic on him and the "hidden" cameras didnt seem so hidden. I just figured it was based on real events and then acted out ala Storage Wars.
 
2013-02-18 01:10:57 PM
www.technologytell.com
 
2013-02-18 01:11:18 PM

12349876: The Billdozer: That is what pisses me off about The Biggest Loser. I went from 500lbs to 250lbs (I'm 6'3") and like 99.9% of 'Murricans I didnt have special 24/7 training facility where I could put my life on hold for a couple of months and lose weight. And then these assfaces go and put it back on again.

The Biggest Loser people never got help figuring out how to maintain a healthy lifestyle in a regular workaday familyaday life and that's precisely why they have such a hard time keeping it off.  And it's why so many people fail after rehab.  It's a hell of a lot easier to avoid bad things while separated from the real world.


It's easy to be a holy man on top of a mountain...
 
2013-02-18 01:11:25 PM

The Muthaship: YixilTesiphon: groppet: Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end.

Really? Most of it seems pretty plausible to me. What sets it off?

It strikes me as staged, too.  Just the reactions of the people mostly.  Especially the employee that is f*cking up.  They play right into all the predictable righteous indignation of the host and the owner of the establishment.


I guess we have different expectations about how people will react in those situations.
 
2013-02-18 01:12:23 PM

BizarreMan: hubiestubert: If you want to start a restaurant, and you haven't any real restaurant experience, then you are better off throwing money into the street or simply going to Vegas and stuffing it down the thong of a barely conscious stripper.

You go in with a plan. You go in with a concept, you go in with partners who have complimentary skills, and you run things tight. That means longer hours for you maybe, but you likewise need time OUT of the kitchen and off the floor, or you will drive yourself nuts.

My wife does purchasing for a casino so she knows many of the food reps.  There is a location here in town that has had multiple different restaurants over the years.  Each one failing within the first year.

She was talking with her Sysco rep one day about that location because we had seen a sign that said there was a new restaurant coming soon to that location.  The new owners had called him requesting assistance with getting things set up.

He asked them the standard questions:

What is your style of food
What is your menu
What is your price point
Who is cooking your food

They were three weeks out from opening a new restaurant and could not answer any of the questions.  They were building a restaurant without knowing if it was to be Mexican, Chinese, Italian, Southern, what they were going to serve, how much to charge for it, and who would actually prepare the food.

They didn't last long.

There is another restaurant location by a major shopping district.  In the last 6 years there have been at least 5 different businesses there.


That is, sadly, not uncommon.

Mind you, there is another end to this scale. I worked for a cat in Bar Harbor, who essentially starts up a new joint every year. New chef, new concept, new location, and he runs things that are not just shameful, but downright criminal, and he takes investors for a good skin every time. Another joint in town brings folks in to work their pizza place, with offers of huge bonuses if you make it for the whole season. They offer up housing to folks to get them to come to the area, and charge them a fairly scandalous rent, and then they fire them before the end of the season, negating their bonus, and booting them from the "employee housing" on the same day, and since they are fired, they lose the deposit on the rooms as well. Oddly enough, they are fairly profitable, but few folks who actually live in town will work for them, because they look on their employees as marks. It IS a business plan, and it works fairly well for them bottom line-wise, but they are terrible people, and the only folks who eat there are tourists or students.

There are ways to run a place that can get you a 25% food cost, and a 25% labor cost, and boost your profit margin beyond 10%--higher even if you manage your bar well--that keep you good employees. When I was at the Iron Horse, I had cooks with me for my entire 4 year run there--which in a college town is damn near unheard of. How? I treated them well, I worked a lot of hours, and watched every damn thing, and every damn penny, and even the distributors that I trusted, I went over the purchases with a fine tooth comb. I was there cleaning out the walk-ins, I washed the dishes, I reviewed the menus, and we pared down a lot, looking for what worked best, because if folks weren't buying it, it didn't stay on the damn thing. We were lean, we did recockulous numbers, and we all got out usually by 8:30-9pm so we could have lives. It isn't easy to get the numbers down, but in the end, you have to pay attention to those numbers, and make sure the place runs as tight as possible, so that folks can work in peace and make their money as well.

The owner looked at me as if I was insane when I suggested the cooks all get raises when I first got there. I showed him how the scheduling could be jiggered to cut our payroll down--the previous chef had his runners coming in to prep at $8 an hour, and the cooks in at 1pm at $10 an hour, and the prime prep time was running us about $44 an hour for four hours. We cut that back to cooks coming in 1pm to 2pm, with a raise, and saved ourselves about $20 an hour, and lo, the runners were happier, the cooks were happier, more skilled folks were doing more and better, and things ran smoother. Runners came in with the waitstaff, and they were a locked in figure considering how busy we were, but those kids didn't feel trapped, and were more focused on the waitstaff, and more appreciated, and they made better tips which made up for the loss of their scheduled hours. The waitstaff made better tips, and the whole place ran smoother, and for less cash out in payroll. You have to look at your numbers and look the whole picture on top of it. Yes, on some weeks, when shows weren't booked, I brought in folks to clean and do maintenance, because people can't simply NOT work during those weeks. It drove up blips on labor cost, but on the average we ran about 26% annually. You have to take care of your people, and your customers.
 
2013-02-18 01:12:23 PM

weirdneighbour: realities-behind-these-shows-since-even-Biggest-Loser-has-trouble-los i ng-keeping-weight-off&new=1#c82581208" title="Quote" class="quoteComment" style="color: rgb(61, 61, 175); text-decoration: initial; -webkit-tap-highlight-color: rgb(255, 94, 153); background-image: url(http://img.fark.net/images/2012/site/commentSprite.png); background-color: transparent; width: 16px; height: 16px; text-indent: -9999px; display: inline-block; background-position: 0px -32px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">http://www.fark.com/comments/7598733/Yes-it-may-be-called- reality-TV-b ut-here-are-5-depressing-realities-behind-these-shows-since-even-Bigge st-Loser-has-trouble-losing-keeping-weight-off&new=1#c82581208" title="Edit/unIgnore User" class="ignUser " style="color: rgb(61, 61, 61) !important; text-decoration: initial; -webkit-tap-highlight-color: rgb(255, 94, 153); background-image: url(http://img.fark.net/images/2012/site/commentSprite.png); background-color: transparent; width: 16px; height: 16px; text-indent: -9999px; display: inline-block; background-position: 0px -16px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">I know pretty much every reality show is staged to some degree or another. Mystery Diners sets off my BS detector to no end. Bar Rescue I do enjoy but I still try to figure out what is staged and isnt


Words to live by.  I couldn't have said it better, my friend . . .
 
2013-02-18 01:14:05 PM

YixilTesiphon: I guess we have different expectations about how people will react in those situations.


Apparently.  I actually just asked my wife that yesterday.  I was watching a few minutes of it.  She's a big fan of the food shows, so I said "Mystery Diners is fake, right?"  She just said, "Looks like it to me."  It just fits a little too well.
 
2013-02-18 01:17:41 PM

dennerman: 12349876: The Billdozer: That is what pisses me off about The Biggest Loser. I went from 500lbs to 250lbs (I'm 6'3") and like 99.9% of 'Murricans I didnt have special 24/7 training facility where I could put my life on hold for a couple of months and lose weight. And then these assfaces go and put it back on again.

The Biggest Loser people never got help figuring out how to maintain a healthy lifestyle in a regular workaday familyaday life and that's precisely why they have such a hard time keeping it off.  And it's why so many people fail after rehab.  It's a hell of a lot easier to avoid bad things while separated from the real world.

It's easy to be a holy man on top of a mountain...


I'm in no way deserving of a medal, but these people were blessed with an opportunity to make a real change in their lives and they threw it away. It grinds my gears.
 
2013-02-18 01:21:00 PM
What gets me about The Biggest Loser is if they're really there to lose weight, then being voted off the show isn't that big of a deal, because you still can work on losing weight!  You just have to be motivated to do it.

Not like Survivor or one of those shows where the goal is to win a million dollars.  If I get voted off, then my shot is gone.


/fully expect the attack from the heavy people telling me it's not a matter of motivation
//yes it is
 
2013-02-18 01:22:21 PM

The Billdozer: I'm in no way deserving of a medal, but these people were blessed with an opportunity to make a real change in their lives and they threw it away. It grinds my gears.


See that's the thing, The Biggest Loser didn't change their everyday lives.  It just gave them a vacation/imprisonment from it.
 
2013-02-18 01:22:36 PM
On the Oprah bit - they're wrong that the car would be tax-free if the show wasn't writing it off as a business expense. There's a $13,000 annual limit on tax-free gifts, so if you got a $28,000 car and the show didn't write it off, you'd still have to pay tax on $15,000 of income.
 
2013-02-18 01:23:31 PM

KatjaMouse: Dude. They lived to lose weight 24/7 for as long as they were on the show in a specially designed weight losing facility. Getting back to your 9-5 and having to live in your car to take the kids to school and soccer practice cuts into gym and food prep time.


Well, the contestants who get sent home continue to lose weight while the season is ongoing. The real thing they lose is the cash incentive. You get told that if you lose enough weight, you'll win a six-figure cash prize, damn straight you're going to shed some pounds. When the money's no longer on the table, motivation goes down.
 
2013-02-18 01:23:43 PM
To summarize TFA:
- The people on the biggest loser have spent all their life making poor decisions in regards to their health, once they get off the show, they go back to making poor decisions and get fat again
- The restaurant owners on Kitchen Nightmares have been making a series of poor decisions, often for years, leading up to Ramsey stepping in for 5 days.  Once Gordon leaves, the restaurants tend to close because the owners go back to making poor decisions.
- On Extreme Makeover, the new houses are so large that often the people they were built for can't afford the taxes, maintenance, or utilities to keep the houses
- People who get $28,000 cars for "free" on Oprah end up having to pay around $7,000 in taxes on the cars, so often end up selling them.
- Storage Wars - Storage Lockers go for sale because people become too poor to afford the rent.  Also some idiots don't notice that even on a semi-scripted TV show, where the value of the locker contents are often greatly inflated, many of the buyers still lost money on the lockers, so go out and spend all their money on lockers that they don't have the ability to recoup their money on.
 
2013-02-18 01:23:44 PM

warrenn: One benefit to Biggest Loser is that it shows people that anyone can lose weight. It may be hard and uncomfortable, but anyone can shed pounds.

I'm always surprised when someone in some forum states that losing weight for them is an impossible task. They say how they ate less and exercised more, never lost the weight, and therefore it is impossible for them to lose weight. This show at least demonstrates that someone's weight is an indication of their lifestyle and by changing behaviors they can lose weight.


Actually, the results here in this article mirror up nicely with what every scientific study on the topic has ever said: the vast majority of people can't keep more then 10-15% of their maximum weight off in the long term.

The show perpetuates the idiotic, anti-scientific, unhealthy assumption that long term, large weight loss is possible.

The number on the scale deserves less focus, healthy eating and responsible exercise deserve more.
 
2013-02-18 01:26:08 PM
My brother is David, the cop on the current season of the Biggest Loser. He was voted out a couple of weeks ago. He's still losing and is down to 210 or less (I havent seen him in a few days). He says he wants to get down to 175# and I think he'll make it. He may eventually gain back a little, but I doubt he'll ever get back over 200#.
 
2013-02-18 01:26:10 PM

12349876: warrenn: One benefit to Biggest Loser is that it shows people that anyone can lose weight. It may be hard and uncomfortable, but anyone can shed pounds.

Just quit your job and never work again and live in a special diet/exercise institution and you too can lose the weight and keep it off!


Yeah...it's really not that hard.  DON'T EAT LIKE A FARKING PIG AND MOVE AROUND VIGOROUSLY 20 MINUTES A DAY.  Even that will keep you in a fairly healthy state.
 
2013-02-18 01:29:08 PM

acad1228: My brother is David, the cop on the current season of the Biggest Loser. He was voted out a couple of weeks ago. He's still losing and is down to 210 or less (I havent seen him in a few days). He says he wants to get down to 175# and I think he'll make it. He may eventually gain back a little, but I doubt he'll ever get back over 200#.


Make sure you keep him to that. With as many people as there are that gain the weight back, the show would actually probably love to have someone that they can point to as the exception to the rule.
 
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