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The Jerry Springer Show that Was

by Layla

political commentary show

A lot of people forget that when the Jerry Springer Show first started, it was basically a political commentary show. It had more in common with Bill Maher’s show today, only it was less sensationalist. Oliver North and Jesse Jackson were both on it, and they weren’t shouting about their wives, either. Jerry Springer’s show used to be just like the Phil Donahue Show. Jerry even styled himself to look just like Phil. They talked about all major political issues, from gun control to homelessness. It was a show run by a politician at that point in its life.

Wouldn’t you know, the ratings weren’t that great. They wanted better ratings because the show would have disappeared otherwise. The Jerry Springer Show that we know and love today didn’t really take off until 1994. From there, Jerry managed to beat Oprah.

All fans of the show remember the shouting and everyone throwing chairs at one another. If people want to say that the show brought out the worst in people, they should remember that the shouting was usually scripted. Jerry is a good showman who knew what people liked to watch. The ratings soared as a result, so he knew what he was doing. I honestly thought that it was great to see people break out of this really narrow mindset and standard of behavior. Everyone is so sedate on television, and that went away on Jerry.

There’s no shortage of shows that are full of political commentary. For people who think that these kinds of shows are inherently better, they should remember that the other side does political commentary, too. I’m liberal, and I think that the stuff that they show on Fox News is a lot more damaging to society than something like the Jerry Springer Show ever could be. Jerry never told people that trickle-down economics worked. He never said that homeless people brought it on themselves. He brought guests onto the show and they shared their own views. Their views and their problems were about their own unique issues. Jerry wasn’t trying to promote ideas that were harmful to society in general, and he didn’t.

People liked to talk about how Jerry and his show were screwing up America, especially in the 2000’s. Hopefully, that opinion is as dated as flip phones today. Usually, people would accuse him of exploiting his guests. That sounds like they really cared about the guests. They would accuse the guests of being cynical people trying to get fifteen minutes in the spotlight, which makes it sound like they’re the ones who are really contemptuous of Jerry’s guests.

People would also talk about how Jerry’s show and Jerry’s popularity just demonstrate the stupidity of the masses. I never see how people who say things like that can then say that they care about the masses at all. It just sounds like they’re trying to talk about how they’re better than they are, which means they’re showing less compassion for the audience than Jerry ever could. Not everyone has to like the Jerry Springer Show. Insulting the millions of people who made it a pop cultural phenomenon is crossing a line, and so is saying that Jerry is one of the people screwing up America even more than the current politicians.

The Political Affiliation of Jerry Springer

by Layla


A lot of people aren’t even aware of the fact that Jerry Springer had anything resembling a political career. Really, given what he would usually go through on the show, it shouldn’t be too surprising that he was something of a Ringmaster in real life. The world of politics isn’t so different from the world of the Jerry Springer Show, so the transition from a politician to a talk show host shouldn’t be too surprising to anyone.

Jerry Springer himself is actually in his early seventies. You’d really never to know to look at him, especially if you were in the process of watching him perform. He really seems to have the energy of a man half his age. Even when the show was in its prime, Jerry Springer himself was in late middle age. It’s like he’s been in his prime for a long time.

When people hear about Jerry Springer being involved in politics, one of the first things they will ask is what political party he was part of. You can usually guess the other person’s political affiliation based on what he or she will mention at that point. If the person is conservative, he’ll guess ‘Democrat.’ If the person is liberal, he’ll guess ‘Republican.’ Well, the conservative is right in this case, since Jerry Springer was a Democrat. However, I really do think that the conservative is right for the wrong reason in this case.

Really, just watching the show should be able to let people know that Jerry is at least relatively liberal. Conservatives usually want to ban this sort of sensationalist material unless they are able to use it to further their political careers. Democrats are the ones who are more likely to find it acceptable to air it on television. People spend a lot of time arguing about whether or not Jerry Springer is making fun of oppressed people or not on the show, but the fact that he had so many of them on the show at all should at least give people some pause for thought.

In the 1990’s, there were very few representations of LGBT people at all. Really controversial topics still had a hard time getting onto television. You still couldn’t show TV characters having sex and you had to do all of these suggestive tricks to demonstrate that they did, in fact, have sex. The audience knew it. The characters knew it. However, the producers still felt the need to hide it from us. It really does seem like just the liberal politician thing to try to break the silence on us. Jerry Springer is definitely not the kind of guy who you would think would be in favor of censorship, and he definitely was not.

The Jerry Springer Show For Every Generation

by Layla

The Jerry Springer Show For Every Generation

The Jerry Springer Show has a legacy that some people love and some people hate. All I can say is that the Jerry Springer Show had a tremendous impact on all of television, and countless people all around the world absolutely loved it and still love it to this day.

The show is hardly a forgotten bygone from the 1990’s. It’s associated with angry members of Generation X lashing out at the world by enjoying the spectacle of odd people getting angry at one another. Speaking as a Millennial, I was a little kid when this show was at its peak in popularity, and I still think that it’s one of the most entertaining shows that was ever devised by anyone. This is a show that is being picked up by the new generation, and it wouldn’t surprise me if a lot of the burgeoning members of Generation Z will pick it up as enthusiastically as the rest of us did.

I know that it is still a popular culture reference that the kids of generation Z can recognize. The Baby Boomers know it. A lot of people will speak of it derisively, but they will recognize it just as well as anyone else. The fact that this show has managed to become meaningful to so many different people is already really impressive in my opinion, and it speaks to the fact that the Jerry Springer Show touches on territories that a lot of people like.

Lots of shows pull away from controversy. They create this fake little sanitized world that won’t offend anyone. It feels like this just keeps getting worse and worse on television too, as if the producers are getting more and more scared of offending people, and they need to censor themselves in advance before they can really do anything. The Jerry Springer Show was never like that. Jerry never had any holds barred, which is part of what made the show so great in the first place.

Does Jerry Love His Show?

by Layla

Jerry Springer is asked all the time about what he thinks about the show. He’s obviously a brilliant man. Even outside of his successful political career, he’s a Tulane University and Northwestern University graduate. People associate the Jerry Springer Show with the uneducated masses, for better or for worse, and Jerry theoretically shouldn’t be one of them.

Jerry has been quoted as saying that he doesn’t watch his own show. He considers it a silly show that is not aimed at him. There are certainly plenty of different ways to interpret that.

For one thing, Jerry might not watch his own show, put he is immersed in it week after week. It’s difficult to imagine that he isn’t absorbing a lot of what is happening anyway. Actually watching it would give him a different perspective, it’s true, but he does more or less watch it regardless of whether or not he wants to watch it. It seems like it’s a little late for him the begin trying to take it back.

Personally, I think that this is just another case of Jerry being a good showman who knows what his audience wants to hear. He knows that these entertainment reporters enjoy thinking of themselves as the sort of people who are above the Jerry Springer Show. They want to believe that Jerry is above it, too. Taking anything seriously leaves you vulnerable. Saying that something is just silly or just for fun is a way to give yourself protection without having to actually denounce what you’re doing in any real way. I think that this was a good portion of what Jerry Springer was doing when he said that.

However, I should note that I agree with him about the show being silly and fun. People ask me all the time about why I like the show, since I don’t fit the stereotypical image of someone who likes a show like that, at least according to elitist entertainment reporters. All I can usually say is that the show is fun. I like hearing about all of the issues that the guests have, especially because we didn’t get to see this kind of thing very often before the Internet. Even with the Internet, the Jerry Springer contestants have more authenticity than Internet people usually do, even though some of the show is staged.

The completely unrestrained aspect of the show makes it fun. It’s a show that isn’t trying to impress. Reality shows are full of people who are desperate to please, and they’re taken the place of things like talk shows today. The Jerry Springer Show has a manic quality to it that makes it hard to turn away from, and I don’t see the point in pretending that you don’t like it.

Jerry Springer needs to be able to maintain a certain pretense around the people in the entertainment media. Authors who know that their books are not considered high art need to sustain a certain ironic distance from them or they will be mocked for actually liking something. Actually like something has been treated with a certain level of scorn in modern culture for a long time, and I’ve never been a fan of it.

One of the reasons why I like to point out that I like the Jerry Springer Show without apology is that I want to help bring back this sentiment. I can’t stand the term ‘guilty pleasure.’ You shouldn’t feel bad about the things that you love. Maybe some of them are objectively good and maybe they aren’t. We shouldn’t have to maintain a conspiracy in order to actually enjoy anything, and creators shouldn’t have to be vague about how they feel about their creations.

Jerry Springer’s Congressional Career

by Layla

Jerry Springer actually ran for Congress for the first time in 1970. This was during a time period in which the first women in Congress were basically considered complete trailblazers, because as rare as they are today, they were non-existent before the 1970’s. One of the big issues that Jerry Springer was working on, apart from trying to unseat conservative Donald D. Clancy, was getting the legal voting age reduced.

It just goes to show you how much things have changed. It’s really hard to believe that before 1971, people who were eighteen couldn’t vote. You had to be at least 21. It’s weird to think that I couldn’t vote yet, and neither could most of my friends. A lot of the people who got Obama elected wouldn’t have been able to vote. The ratification of the 26th amendment in 1971 changed all that. It’s amazing to think that Jerry Springer himself was one of the people who was really enthusiastic about that amendment, and his input probably helped get it ratified. Even then, Jerry Springer was doing something for 1990’s kids.

Well, Jerry Springer did consider running for Congress again. He might have in both 2000 and 2004, and he didn’t do it. He didn’t do it for all of the reasons that you’re probably thinking: the negative public image of the Jerry Springer Show helped kill his political career. He figured he didn’t stand a chance against the candidates who would have been taken that much more seriously.

All I can say is that this is really unfair. If Arnold Schwarzenegger can be the governor of California, I really don’t see why Jerry Springer can’t be a senator. At least Jerry was always himself in his roles. I’ve heard that Arnold’s ridiculous screen image actually helped his political career. It was like people thought that he was going to shoot political problems and tell them that he was going to be back. Jerry Springer actually had a political career to begin with, and people probably still would have voted for Arnold if it came down to a choice between the two of them.

Ronald Reagan was an actor in cheesy Western movies, and he got to be president. If nothing else, you have to admit that Jerry Springer would have been better. I mean, he dealt with unreasonable people all the time on the show. He probably would have had an easier time in the Cold War.