Reviewing MTV's Top Show – Jersey Shore

Photo Courtesy of NJ.com
Photo Courtesy of NJ.com

By RAY SMITH

Is it trashy? To some people. Was the show an accurate depiction of the town in the summer time? Yeah. Is it a lot of fun? Hell yeah.

For those who were trapped under something heavy and didn’t watch MTV’s “Jersey Shore,” I’ll provide a brief introduction. Eight housemates (quickly narrowed down to seven) from various areas in the Northeast, primarily the New York City area, are placed in a large house filled with cameras at Seaside Heights, N.J. for a summer. Their drinking, social and sexual escapades are all filmed for a very curious nation to observe. Though it lasted only nine episodes, it could have been 1,000 and this show would still have  had people glued to the TV.

Jersey Shore in 20 words: Guido, Guidette, Fights, Slapping, Techno, Dancing, Hookup, Sexy, Duck phone, Jersey, Clubs, Atlantic City, Hot tubs, Fun, Hilarious, The Situation.

In some reality shows it’s hard to forget that there is a TV crew present, thus reminding the audience that it is not truly “reality.” MTV crews did a great job of staying out of the shots; whether it was on the streets, at clubs, on the boardwalk or in the house. There was only one time where someone intervened, and that was when Mike “The Situation” was punched by Jenni “JWOWW” in Atlantic City. The crew’s presence was initially sort of a shock, as I was reminded quickly that it is actually a filmed television show.

To get an insider point of view, through friends from high school, I was able to speak with Mike from North Jersey. He was featured as a friend of Snooki’s during the season, though he knew her before the show began, and was featured on episodes 3 and 6. He asked for his last name to be withheld because he is not sure if he is authorized by MTV to do interviews.

“Being a part of the biggest hit show on MTV was definitely an awesome experience,” Mike said. “The coolest roommates were Ronnie and Mike. I got along with them really well. Vinny was definitely the funniest guy in the house. He was hilarious.”

According to Mike, it seems MTV did not instruct the cast members on how to act.

“No one put an act on for the camera,” Mike said. “Everyone was just doing what they do everyday. G.T.L. Gym, tanning and laundry. And definitely clubbing it up and having a great time. MTV did not encourage anything. You just had to be yourself, nothing was scripted.”

He did receive some stardom following his appearance on the top reality show.

“Usually I get ‘Hey, you were that kid on Jersey Shore’ at least once a day,’” Mike said. “I thought it was funny seeing myself on TV just because I did not think I would ever get that experience.”

What makes a reality show are the characters. MTV did a great job casting, as there were some relatable characters, and some not-so-relatable ones. This mix provided various age groups something very entertaining to watch.

DJ Pauly D was one of the bigger “guidos” on the show, just judging by his hair and the fact that his name has DJ as a prefix. He was a very funny character who provided jokes on a regular basis. My favorite moment of his was his ordeal with an “Israeli stalker” who followed him around the Boardwalk. Character Grade: B

Snooki was definitely a character to remember. From her opening night of getting trashed, to getting punched by a grown man at a bar, to her uncomfortable–to–watch lonely boardwalk dancing scene, she definitely was entertaining. Grade: A-

Sammi was one of the dramatic and annoying characters on the show. When her man Ronnie was in a fight on the boardwalk, she claimed to have been “traumatized” when she was pushed away. Sammi, baby, just think how traumatized your poor mother and father will be when you bring home Ronnie (who now has a prior). Grade: C

JWOWW’s choice of clothing was outstanding; that’s really all I got. Take it how you want. Grade: B-

Vinny was the most down to earth character on the show. He was relatable, except for his eyebrows. His “taking the boss’s girl” was a key moment for him as well as having a feud with the best character on the show, The Situation. Also, his sense of humor always kept him in the mix. Grade: B

Ronnie fits the perfect stereotype for a juicehead. Always gets in fights, went to jail and never wears a T-shirt that covers his upper arms. His relationship with Sammi was very interesting; seeing as when we first met him he said that his number one rule was not to fall in love at the Jersey Shore. Grade: B

Mike “The Situation.” As soon as he arrives, you can tell this guy will definitely be a character. Based on his track record for the summer, girls seem to have liked him at the Jersey Shore. Not sure what that says about finding romance in Seaside Heights. He did have some dynamite lines, from responding to Snooki’s request for a roll with, “Don’t worry you already got a few” to his closing line of “I ran this house from start to finish, whether people liked it or not.”  He’s right. I hope this guy gets his own show, because it may be trashy and sleazy, but at least you know it will be entertaining. Grade: A+.

This show had the ability to captivate people of all ages. “Jersey Shore” watching parties appeared as Facebook events.

My father, a veteran of the Jersey Shore in the ‘80s, sat glued to the television one night until midnight. The man doesn’t usually stay awake past 10 p.m. (11 o’clock when the Yankees are on), but MTV was one of the only channels he had memorized out of the nearly 1,000 channel FIOS lineup.

The show started off as taboo to some, but it grew on America. It wasn’t offensive; it was just a bunch of kids having fun.

I’m sure if you asked anyone on campus if they had the opportunity to have as much fun as those kids did this summer, they’d do it in a heartbeat. So pump your fist and blast that techno, and pray that the rumors of a second season are true.