Bridalplasty: Reality TV Becomes Self-Parody


Last night E! premiered its show in which women compete for the grand prize of a full-body plastic surgery makeover in order to look “perfect” for her wedding day. It would be funny if it weren’t actually real.

Seriously, though, the show does seem like a big joke—a sort of social commentary on what has become our modern-day “wedding culture” where tons of time and money is spent (wasted?) on creating a fairytale day in which there’s only a 50% chance of a “happily ever after” outcome. But it also could be seen as self-parody of the entire genre of reality TV, by taking a ridiculous, if not completely unhealthy, premise and seeing how complicit contestants are in their own humiliation while also trading in some of their dignity for a little bit of fame and the slight chance that they will get some free lipo and tits. The problem, though, is that while there’s a possibility that the show’s creators are clever enough to be so self-aware, its on-air participants are clearly not. Case in point: When going over the brides’-to-be surgery wish lists, the doctor stares at one woman and tells her, “You have perfect breasts…for doing a breast augmentation.” He also willingly, and perhaps unethically, marks up areas on some size 0 contestants where they could use liposuction.

Of course, the entire notion of promoting physical perfection through cosmetic surgery is dangerous, not only physically—due to the general anesthesia required, and any complications that might arise during recovery—but also mentally.

But it should be pointed out that Bridalplasty doesn’t just focus on the superficial. The winner must be at least a little bit smart, as evidenced by the first challenge. The contestants had to race to finish a puzzle, by covering up their old “gross” bodies with Photoshopped versions of themselves.

The women who finished their puzzles in a timely fashion were allowed to attend an “injection party,” where they would be able to get a bunch of fillers and Botox. The last two women were up for elimination, and their fate was decided by the other brides, meaning that this competition will feature alliances and backstabbing and tons of fighting.

When planning my wedding, I thought that the pressure to have a lighting design and color scheme was oppressive and ludicrous. But if you read enough of those wedding magazines, even the more outrageous and wasteful things can begin to seem commonplace and necessary. It took some effort to not get caught up in such nonsense. I can’t imagine how it would feel to think that surgery was just another step in walking down the aisle, particularly because someone has already agreed to spend the rest of his/her life with you, as is. Naturally, not all women would fall prey to that kind of thinking, but evidently, many will. Unfortunately, Bridalplasty doesn’t offer brain augmentations.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Share Tweet Submit Pin