Raw, Sloppy ‘Joe’ a Parody of Reality TV

Sep 1, 2003  •  Post A Comment

“The Joe Schmo Show” will debut Tuesday on Spike. This is the show that hopes to make “Ready, set, touch that hooker!” the new broadcasting catchphrase. “Joe Schmo,” described in a Spike press release as “one of television’s biggest and riskiest experiments,” is ostensibly a parody of reality TV of the 10-young-people-in-a-house-in-a-warm-climate variety.
One participant (Matt Kennedy Gould) is unaware that the other participants are actors. Characters have nicknames like “the Rich Bitch” and “the Asshole.” The show features such high spots as a large man (Brian Keith Etheridge, one of the producers) dancing in a backless G-string, and another man doing a striptease in a pair of leopard-skin crotchless panties.
In the eighth episode, a segment titled “Hands on a High Priced Hooker” asks the contestants to put one part of their body in contact with a beautiful topless blonde named “Tawny,” whose breasts are blurred onscreen, a technique known as “mosaic.” One contestant is told to put his left hand on her breast, another’s head is in contact with her crotch. The first one to let go has to hang out in the laundry room for an unspecified period.
“Joe Schmo” is produced by Stone Stanley Entertainment, the same production entity responsible for the male-chauvinist extravaganza “The Man Show” on Comedy Central, now in its third season. “The Man Show” has helped define the new basic cable sensibility, in which segments such as “Breast Implant Fashion Show,” “Doug’s Mom Reviews Porn,” “Guess Whose Ass Crack” and “Girls on Trampolines” are staples.
In describing “Joe Schmo,” Stone Stanley spokesman Matthew Marcus described it as “outrageous, but not salacious.”