Reality Bites: Buckwild
Cara has a "treat" for the ladies: a body painter shows up to prep them for the party. Unsurprisingly, the dudes merely sit around and watch as he daubs Salwa (the ethnic one), Ashley, and Cara. From there, they go to the club, which -- music aside -- is right out of the early '90s: all black lighting and neon accents. Given the earlier references, I was actually disappointed no Hypercolor togs were on display.
Sorry about the pixelation, but you get the idea.
Salwa and Ashley promptly take their shirts off, the better to show off their new "ink." And in spite of this thing being dubbed a "body paint party," they look like the only ones so decorated. They're also the only topless people in the club until they convince Shain to join them.
[Shain, so eager to distance himself from homosexual insinuation, is blissfully unaware he's just done just about the gayest thing you can do at a night club short of putting your penis in another man's mouth.]
Meanwhile, Shae and Jesse's "big date" that she skipped the party for consists of bowling with Jesse's best friend. Of everyone on the show, Shae is the one who seems the most miserable: looking on stoically while her peers consume mass quantities and roll around in filth. She's going nowhere with this trepanned Jay Cutler clone and she knows it.
Back at the club, Tyler picks up a girl whose boyfriend belatedly (and drunkenly) tries to block their car, and Anna returns with a guy who brings along another girl to make out with. I found myself almost fondly recalling Jersey Shore's comparatively sophisticated levels of romanticism.
But again, I'm failing to see the societal collapse here. Four-wheeling? Jumping off bridges? Getting into drunk fights on somebody's front porch? Welcome to every suburban adolescent's upbringing since 1985. I'm pretty sure a random sample of any high schooler in the United States would yield you consistently more "off the chain" party examples than what's on display here.
But that's not the point, is it? After all, aren't rural folks are the last population we can safely make fun? We point and laugh and type "SMH" on Twitter, because there's no stigma to it. The young people on Buckwild may not suffer from the worst conditions found in Appalachia, but the show still feels like picking on the only kid who still brings a lunch box to school in junior high.