Summer TV preview: Is ‘The Glass House’ really worth watching?

Is this house really worth visiting?

The Glass House” has clearly been a lightning rod of controversy ever since it was first announced. It has been accused of being just a cheap “Big Brother” knockoff designed to capitalize on it now being on TV for a few more weeks, and it even went into a courtroom before ABC was given the green light to actually air the show.

Let’s move away from the legal drama for the rest of this article, though, and ask what is a rather fundamental question — is this reality competition really worth watching?

The pros – For those of you who feel as though “Big Brother” is too gross and has too much backstabbing, this is really going to be a kinder, gentler version of the show (although the commercials try to make you think otherwise) . The contestants are not as vicious and come from greater walks of life, and from that perspective it could be rather interesting.

Another simple reason to watch here is that these sort of shows do traditionally make great summer programming. You have several weeks to learn to love the contestants, and there’s surely going to be one person worth rooting for in here … right?

The cons – Remember, “Big Brother” deviated from its “America votes” format for a reason after the Chicken George/Brittany Petros chaos in season 1. When the show started, it (like “Glass House”) had the eliminations determined strictly by the people voting at home. The problem with this was simply that there was no strategy outside of kissing up to America and people with rich families could sabotage popular contestants to move their own members further in the game. Seeing people in control of their own destiny is far more entertaining from a strategy standpoint.

While “Glass House” may actually be fairly decent, why settle for an imitation?  The July 12 “Big Brother” premiere is not that far away, especially with the live feeds coming on sale soon. Patience makes the heart grow fonder — and by the time we see Julie Chen on TV again, this wait may turn her into our favorite person alive.

The verdict – Let’s fact it — if you like “Big Brother,” you may like “Glass House.” There also are probably going to be plenty of people (us included) who watch the premiere based solely on curiosity.

This is ultimately where things get tricky — if this show is even remotely close to being subpar, everyone will tune out knowing that there is something better coming up soon. Even if it is great, it’s still going to have a challenge moving away from the court drama and establishing an identity of its own.

Photo: ABC

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