So little is real any more. Laugh tracks on sit coms tell us where the writers and producers want us to giggle, synched musical performances replace authentic concert or live performances. They are both examples of sweetening the ‘real thing’ or how we ought to feel about something naturally as they change, ever so slightly altering the natural event itself. We electronically mask the things we don’t want to hear – wind noise – any distraction – even to the point that an event itself no longer bears much resemblance to the real thing.
And now along comes CBS – apparently guilty for creating fake fireworks over Boston! Fireworks on the Charles River – for long acknowledged as one of the great pyrotechnic shows in the United States – but that wasn’t good enough for CBS entertainment! Their producer superimposed those spectacular fireworks over Fenway Park and the State Capitol dome! The deception was caught by Bostonians who recognized that both locations were in the opposite direction from the Charles, and that it was geographically impossible to have seen nary a flare there.
Defending his decision the producer David Mugar told the Boston Globe, “…said the added images were above-board because the show was entertainment and not news. He said it was no different than (sic) TV drama producer David E. Kelley using scenes from his native Boston in his show “Boston Legal” but shooting the bulk of each episode on a studio set in Hollywood. “Absolutely, we’re proud to show scenes from our city,” Mugar said. “It’s often only shown in film or in sporting matches. We were able to highlight great places in Boston, historical places with direct ties to the Fourth. So we think it was a good thing.”
He’ll have to explain to me the historic significance of Fenway Park to July 4th. But maybe I am being too strict in my interpretation of Boston’s Revolutionary History?
When caught CBS declined to comment to the paper, but the Boston Globe’s media critic did write, “It is an ethical issue, and to say it’s not because the show was aired through CBS Entertainment is to imply that the entertainment side of CBS has no ethics…”
I think it is just disappointing. Did Mugar think those great fireworks were simply not great enough and needed his artistic touch to make them even better? Who’s he to judge? And how’s the audience to know what’s real and fake, or to be misled to think one thing over the truth, just because it was an iconic picture?
And we should wonder why so few people in the audience trust anything they hear or see or told? Maybe we ought to ask ourselves what we’ve done to pollute their opinion of us
A more complete story can be found here.
One thought on “Why must we screw with reality? Why do we feel it is OK to sweeten life’s great experiences?”
Spot on as ever, Peter.