Just when you thought reality television couldn’t get any more “real,” a new show is in the works that could make stars out of cheating husbands and wives.
The still-untitled program is slated to feature real-life couples who met on a matchmaking website designed specifically for people who are unfaithful to their spouses.
The Toronto-based site, the Ashley Madison Agency, is said to have some 280,000 members in North America since it went online two years ago.
“Infidelity has become a real hot-button topic these days everybody is talking about,” Darren Morgenstern, the founder of the site, told the New York Post.
Several networks, including NBC and HBO, are reportedly interested in the concept, which would be fine-tuned depending if it ends up on cable or the broadcast airwaves.
Co-producer Jane Lipsitz told the paper the show would document the progress of four or five different couples who met through the online agency.
“We’d see where they start and where they end up with their own soul searching or whatever they’re trying to find or not find in terms of what their marriage means to them.”
Speaking to the Hollywood Reporter about the idea, Lipsitz said, “The sanctity of marriage is clearly a hot-button topic in today’s environment. Exploring the current state of love and commitment against the backdrop of our changing social landscape makes for a fascinating and daring unscripted drama.”
Lipsitz and her co-producer Dan Cutforth have earned Emmy nominations for their work on “Project Greenlight” and “Last Comic Standing.”
According to Lipsitz, ABC’s new series “Desperate Housewives” has broken new ground, paving the way for an infidelity reality show.
“Until now it’s been potentially taboo for women to actually express that they’re unhappy in their marriages and obviously there’s a huge audience for that,” she told the Post.
The segment featured naked actress Nicollette Sheridan dropping her towel to tempt Philadelphia Eagles player Terrell Owens, and ABC apologized for the promotion after being flooded with calls of complaint.
Eagles’ Terrell Owens tempted by actress Nicollette Sheridan during opening of ‘Monday Night Football’ (ABC-TV)
The potential for infidelity becoming a large industry has many therapists concerned.
Family counselor Brett Williams told Fox News cheating websites facilitate straying, thus helping to ruin families.
“They’re basically destroying the fabric of our society,” Williams said. “Our society is built on family units. Once that decays, we’re not going to have much of a society.”
But David P. Barash, a professor of psychology at the University of Washington in Seattle, thinks having more than one sexual partner – even while married – is only natural.
“When right-wing Christian moralists worry that family values are under assault, they don’t know how right they are! Monogamy, perhaps the poster child of family values, is under profound assault – but not from any progressive, gay or feminist agenda. Rather, nature is the culprit,” he writes on the Ashley Madison site.
“We are imbued by Western culture with monogamous ideals. Yet, like other living things, we’re often compelled by our biology to depart from monogamy. Neither men nor women are the primordial purveyors of extra-pair copulations, yet EPCs have dogged and delighted human beings throughout recorded history, and doubtless before. It takes two to do the EPC tango. And human beings love to dance.”
NOTE: “OBSESSED WITH SEX” – the November issue of WND’s acclaimed monthly Whistleblower magazine – takes direct aim at Alfred C. Kinsey, the “father of the sexual revolution” glorified in the new feature Hollywood film starring Liam Neeson. Whistleblower documents, as never before, that Kinsey was a sexual psychopath who relied on the abuse and sexual torture of hundreds of infants and children at the hands of pedophiles in preparing his revolutionary “research.”
The issue shows with devastating clarity exactly how America was transformed in five decades from the “Leave it to Beaver” innocence of the 1950s to today’s wanton, “anything-goes” sexual anarchy.
For a very limited time, subscribe to Whistleblower, or renew your subscription or give a gift Whistleblower subscription and also receive 7 FREE issues, plus Joseph Farah’s blockbuster book, “Taking America Back.”. Offer good in the U.S. only, and while supplies last.
IMPORTANT NOTE: The subscription price for Whistleblower will be increased on Feb. 1, 2005. So subscribe or renew your subscription or give a gift subscription now and lock in the old, lower price for your Whistleblower subscription!