Comparison between "Putting Your Best Face Forward" and "Absolutely the Pitts: MTV's and Fox's plastic-Surgery Shows Mess with Face-and Heads"

Essay by ghostkissCollege, UndergraduateA, July 2007

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The first article, "Putting Your Best Face Forward", written by Carl Elliot is about how people consider the self-transformation through artificial means such as plastic surgery or extreme makeover a positive thing in nowadays society. The author describes a Fox reality show, The Swan, to show the desire of people for perfecting their looks in order to gain recognition from others. Elliot then introduces the concept of "looking-glass self", which reflects how nowadays people form their own images by using the values imposed by others' opinions and judgments The second article, "absolutely the Pitts: MTV's and Fox's plastic-Surgery Shows Mess with Face-and Heads", by Marc Peyser is mainly describing about how the whole process of the artificial surgery in MTV's I Want a Famous Face and Fox's The Swan demoralize people in a way of glorifying the values of celebrity worshiping. The author expresses his disgust along with his descriptions.

Overall, the two articles are similar in their use of artificial self-transformations portrayed in reality shows to show about how the "body images" are like in American society. However, they are mostly different in their languages and ways of presenting their messages to the readers.

Even though these two articles both use the recent reality shows to show how people are willing to utilize artificial surgery and makeover to make themselves look better and more confident in front of others, the languages and the ways the two authors present this phenomenon are different in a way that produces different impacts to the readers at the end. In the first article, the author describes one reality show; "eighteen surgically altered finalists will compete against one another in a televised, two-hour beauty contest." (Elliot, 485) The second article also reveals this phenomenon about people's attitudes towards artificial beauty; "the winners...