It’s a bit of news that crossed my way not too long ago. The Miss America pageant is ditching the swimsuit and evening gown competition portion of their programming. It’s news that isn’t entirely unexpected as it has been called for after years, if not decades. But at the same time, it is still surprising that they are actually going through with the idea.
At the heart of it, no matter what they call it or what they WANT to turn it into, it’s a beauty pageant. These women aren’t up there to solve trigonometry or convince anybody they can sing or dance or anything like that. The “talent” portion of the show many times was looked at as kind of a joke. The prevailing opinion, whether true or not, was that these women got up there in a bathing suit or an evening gown, waved pretty, answered a few generic questions, and judges whittled it down until we had a winner for a year. Someone got a crown, a sash, and the Tv people got some old guy to sing to them in a video clip that would air forever and ever reminding you of that time someone you didn’t know got an accolade that carries as much water as a brick of Swiss cheese.
So what happened? A LOT OF THINGS!
Even as someone who isn’t into these things at all, times are not only changing, but they changed a long time ago. One of the biggest reasons is TV ratings for any of these pageants was going down over the years. In the days when you only had 3 or 4 channels on TV and nothing else to do otherwise, these shows did well, but with more channels, more programming, cable, Sattelite, DVR, and the internet, Watching women parade around in swimsuits and evening gowns were falling by the wayside. You can get that stuff, and a lot more, just be a click of a mouse or a remote now. You just do not need four hours or more of that stuff anymore. People were on to other things.
And speaking of people, their moods have changed too. These kinds of things just aren’t looked at as much as they used to. This is not anything new either. On both sides of the gender gap, pageants just aren’t as favorable anymore. Sure, sometimes it is called for by some crowds and appreciated, but in this Over the top style and broadcast on TV every so often? Not nearly as much. Most pageants themselves have been going to hard times.
And so have a lot of the people who have been watching. The days of a little girl growing up to wanting to be a Beauty pageant winner or a princess isn’t exactly the reality for a lot of the kids out there. They all have their own dreams and goals to live up to. Not some unobtainable goal that someone else dreamed up from a bygone era. There has to be some sense of reality into this, something relatable. Maybe those out there aren’t finding this stuff relatable anymore.
And there is also a lot of the outside stuff as well. Our President openly admitted to walking in on Contestants as they were being dressed. Even knowing what was going on at some of these gives me the shivers. I’d not want them up there either if I knew what kind of crap was going on.
Also, and quite a few places need this now, it needed freshening up. Update the image and get new people to take a look at things and give it something new. At the very least it is generating some buzz online and in the news, and after the horrible news and some of the horrible people that seemed to be involved with it, a change in an image may be the beginning of something new.
Probably still won’t watch any of these “contests” but someone might, get a fresh image and maybe even do better. We will have to see.