Written by Evan Braun
I was prepared right from the get-go to absolutely hate this set. I could not imagine any scenario by which I would be able to get any enjoyment out of MTVâ€™s My Super Sweet 16. So colour me surprised. It turns out there is some appeal in the show after all.
There can be no question that Iâ€™m nowhere near the showâ€™s intended demographic (12-18 year old girls, if I had to guess it). Everywhere you look on the set youâ€™re destined to find large amounts of loud, glossy pink lettering, whereas Iâ€™m more of a minimalist myself. I had to wait until just the right time to make the review; I had to be completely sure nobody else was home and close my drapes in case there was somebody walking past the window who could see my TV. You might say I was profoundly embarrassed just to have this set in my possession.
In retrospect, I was probably being a bit dramatic. If thatâ€™s the case, however, I will have already found something in common with the characters featured on My Super Sweet 16. Indeed, one would be hard-pressed to find a more dramatic group.
In case youâ€™re unfamiliar with the premise of the show, as I was, I will provide a quick overview. Each half-hour episode chronicles the journey of one, two, or sometimes three incredibly spoiled brats (usually girls, but not always) planning the most significant event of their short but indescribably privileged lives: their Sweet 16.
MTV delights in showcasing their brutal, selfish, unappreciative, and jaw-droppingly disrespectful tendencies as they walk all over friends and loved ones in their short-sighted attempts to flaunt their money and popularity for anyone shallow enough to pay attention. What is truly baffling is the way their parents put up with their crap by giving into each and every one of their frivolous demands, whether it be to make their party entrance in a helicopter, take a day-trip to try on potential dresses in ritzy downtown Paris, or withhold affection unless Beyonce can be booked for the main event.
That, in a nutshell, is the simultaneous misery and appeal of the show. Like a train wreck in progress, you simply cannot look away.
The show is presented in standard 3:4 full screen. As itâ€™s a reality show, the quality of the video is mixed. Thereâ€™s plenty of artifacting and grain if you look for it, particularly in darker compositions. While not all reality shows suffer from these visual problems, this one certainly does. If youâ€™re looking for colour, then look out for lots and lots of hot pink (as noted earlier).
The audio mix is 2-channel Dolby stereo. While the audio is mostly competent, the producers seemed to have some difficulty with distortion issues resulting from an excessive amount of teenage shrieking. But I suppose you might expect this from rooms full of young girls who no awareness of others or sense of personal responsibility.
The first disc offers a sneak peak from the set of My Super Sweet 16: The Movie, but itâ€™s hardly worthy of being called a featurette seeing as itâ€™s hardly a minute and a half long. The second disc features an exclusive trailer for the showâ€™s upcoming fifth season (for the record, I was astounded to discover it had been around so long). Both discs also include a bonus episode that was never aired on television, but they are fairly humdrum and much the same as the ones that did air. Possible reasons for them being left out: not enough scandal. They were pretty ordinary, but no doubt an exciting addition for fans of the show.
In all honesty, I couldnâ€™t recommend the set to anyone. That is, unless youâ€™re a competitive, patronizing rich kid with aspirations of being the most annoying teenager on the planet, or a parent planning to raise such a monster.
If youâ€™d like to know what would be really intereseting, it would be this: a My Super Sweet 16 reunion tour that brings us back to see just how an additional 20 years has treated the subjects of the show. You know, once theyâ€™ve lived outside their parents home, been indicted for tax fraud or worse, and found out that lifeâ€™s more than peaches and cream. Iâ€™d pay almost anything to see the smiles wiped off these moronsâ€™ faces.