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Ask a Raging Feminist: What reality TV show would you appear on?

Reality TV is a guilty pleasure for sure. By now, most people are aware of the behind-the-scene manipulation that occurs to get the drama and intrigue that’s supposedly “real.” But that doesn’t stop many of us from eating these types of shows up like candy — getting sucked into interpersonal drama, feuds and, occasionally, lots of fun. Which had us curious…

If you had to pick one reality show to appear on, what would it be?

I’d like to be on the reality show where terrible, misogynist Real Housewives husbands (Josh Taekman, Rich Wakile, Peter Thomas, etc) are tied to chairs while listening to The Feminine Mystique on tape. That show doesn’t actually exist, but it should. Hire me, Bravo!” — Lilit Marcus

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but the only legit answer to this should be ‘No reality show. None.’ After analyzing 10+ years of reality TV dating, makeover, business, lifestyle, survival and competition shows for my book, Reality Bites Back: The Troubling Truth About Guilty Pleasure TV, I can promise you this: you can’t game the system. Everyone thinks they are the one person too something (smart, savvy, ethical, whatever) to be misrepresented, but the truth is that Frankenbite editing and behind the scenes manipulations put every reality TV contestant at risk of being turned into insulting or bigoted tropes. So unless you like the idea of being TV’s next Desperate Bachelorette, Angry Black Woman, Catty Bitch, or Weepy Waif… just don’t.” — Jennifer Pozner

More: Ask a Raging Feminist: Where would you go if money was no object?

I don’t think it exists quite yet, but Extreme Libraries sounds like the perfect show for me. It would involve contestants identifying literary quotes and finding the magical hidden cardigan.”  — Lyndsay Kirkham

So You Think You Can Dance has been my fav reality show for nigh a decade now, for the brilliance of the young dancers and the choreographers who shape their movement in thrilling ways. However, the creator/main judge is such a sexist asshole that I would love to go on the show not just to dance, but also to subtly undermine his worldview. I have also noticed the show has never had an out LGBTQ contestant, so I would want to challenge that as well! I would need a time machine to do this, one that took me all the way back to my childhood so I could train for it properly; but feminists are capable of anything and we will invent one soon.” — Rhea St. Julien

I want to be on one where all the women get in screaming fights over who drank the rest of the coffee, except I’ll just make more coffee and we’ll discuss intersectional feminism.” — Alex Blank Millard

More: Ask a Raging Feminist: If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

Fox News. That show is hilarious. All the characters are so tragic and it’s such a weird little alternate reality. What an interesting show.” — Ashley Black

The Walking Dead. I just need to know if I am the type of person that will be eaten by zombies or if I will thrive and build a community of activists in the midst of a zombie apocalypse.” — Patricia Valoy

“It would have to be Dancing With The Stars, as that season’s large, yet spunky, C-list celebrity. I know that once the producers discover my feminist proclivities, they will force me to do my first dance (a foxtrot) to “I Am Woman” costumed as Gloria Steinem. Despite the cliché, my partner Derek Hough and I will sweep into the finals buoyed by the overwhelming support of raging feminists everywhere. Our freestyle will be an Argentinian Tango/Funk mash-up, with me dressed as Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Derek as Antonin Scalia. Backed by a chorus of sequin-robed dancers and a giant “Trust Women” banner, the coveted mirror ball trophy will surely be ours.” — Therese Shechter

True Story: I applied to be on Bad Girls Club once, when I was underemployed. I was, ummm, sort of kidding, and I had never actually watched the show prior to applying. Suffice it to say, I’m definitely glad they never called me back. I’m a lover, after all — not a fighter. (I’m also a crier, which I feel would have been a pretty big detriment in that house.)” — Carmen Rios

More: Ask a Raging Feminist: What’s your theme song?

Seeing what I’ve seen from behind the scenes as a reality TV editor, I would never willingly sign up for that kind of coercion and manipulation.” — Anna Holtzman

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