It seems like MTV is done with catfishing for its reality TV fare and has moved onto an equally problematic behaviour: ghosting.
The network has cobbled together a new reality docu-series titled Ghosted: Love Gone Missing, which basically has the same premise as Catfish and revolves around hosts Rachel Lindsay and Travis Mills helping individuals track down those who suddenly cut off all communications with them with no explanation (hence, ghosting).
It’s… something else, that’s for sure.
Ghosted isn’t that far of a deviation from other reality TV show fare from MTV when it comes to exploiting people’s pain. However, this one is particularly problematic as it is essentially promoting stalking and harassment.
When someone ghosts a person, it’s usually because they’re leaving behind toxic relationships and/or for their own safety. It’s bad enough when someone insists on tracking down a person who ghosted them but it is exponentially worse when they’ve got the resources of a major entertainment channel backing them.
When you’re not being traumatised after coming face to face with a problematic person who you ghosted, having random strangers asking you why you ghosted them while a camera is pointed in your face isn’t exactly a nice thing to experience even at the best of times.
Unsurprisingly, MTV’s new reality TV show has drawn a heap of backlash from people who aren’t particularly fond of its creepy stalker premise.
The saddest part about all this is despite the backlash, there will still be people who will watch this show and partake in the commercialisation of stalking. At least therapists everywhere will have a heap of job security once this show airs whenever it airs.
If you want a show about tracking down people who don’t want to be found, go watch Netflix’s Mindhunter. It’s less cringy and has more gruesome serial killers, but it’s essentially the same thing and is arguably more realistic.