Should non-celebrity cast be blamed for all the absurd situations on dating programs?
SBS Plus & ENA’s entertainment program “I’m SOLO, Love Forever” broadcast on September 21st showed the 11th Youngchul making another appointment with the 13th Hyunsook on the day he dated the 3rd Jungsook.
Finding out that Youngchul had an appointment with a friend that day, Jungsook angrily said, “Why are you guys making appointments without telling me? I’m stressed out…”. She looked puzzled when she discovered that Youngchul’s friend was Hyunsook. Jungsook got frustrated, saying “To be honest, this is not polite, isn’t it?”, adding “Stop using Hyunsook as a shield”.
Youngchul said, “The situation is too complicated for Hyunsook to handle. Seems like she wants to have a talk”, showing his consideration toward Hyunsook. He told the production team, “Hyunsook doesn’t want the camera to film this”, then left to meet Hyunsook alone.
After the broadcast, viewers criticized Youngchul for his rude behavior towards Jungsook. They believed that it was rude to meet two women on the same day regardless of the reason.
As the controversy over the double date arose, Youngchul restricted the comment section on his SNS due to excessive malicious comments. On the 22nd, Youngchul posted, “I could feel my lacking side after watching yesterday’s broadcast. Apart from the way they edited the content, my actions were clearly inconsiderate of the other person. I have deeply reflected on myself and apologized to Jungsook”.
He continued, “I humbly accept all the feedback from viewers and will reflect on myself. However, some comments have gone too far, so I think I will close the comment section for a while. Please understand my decision”.
As reality dating programs have recently emerged as a trend, there are also voices expressing concerns over the words and actions of the cast members as well as their private life issues that may cause controversies.
Dating program cast members only became famous after the shows in the past, but they are being evaluated with celebrity standards on recent broadcasts. Due to malicious comments criticizing what they say and do on the show, many of the cast members have personally posted apologies.
As a result, a debate over whether people who are neither celebrities nor public figures have to apologize for what they said and did on the show has been raised. Due to the nature of the show, some parts might have been exaggerated or distorted through editing work. Therefore, it is questionable why the cast should face all the criticism instead of the production team. In this regard, a broadcasting official stated, “Gaining huge benefits from high ratings and the casts’ popularity, production teams of dating shows should come up with measures to protect the cast”