Reality TV Show Idea: Tough Tots! Watch Adorable Three-Year-Olds in the Test of Their Lives!

Given our culture’s penchant for exploiting children, I have come up with a reality show idea called “Tough Tots.” It would have us laughing when children get hurt, ala “America’s Favorite Home videos;” it would put extreme pressure on them to excel, and it would have the tots competing against each other.

I envision my reality show featuring kids of about three years old. They are old enough to talk but young enough to exploit. The show would start out with a cattle call asking for three-year olds in various places across the country. Children would wait in long slow lines with their parents until they got their chance to audition.

Vendors would come along offering lots of varieties of junk food. When at last the children are auditioned, they would take an IQ test and a psychological test. Parents would also take a personality test in an effort to find the most competitive parents. Then they would be asked their age and what they most want for the world. (Sort of like Miss Universe where the contestants all want world peace).

The contestants would be narrowed down to nine girls and nine boys; the criteria mostly based on looks and a perky personality and parents who would push the child. The children and at least one parent would fly out to Los Angeles where the show would be filmed. A desert island would be better but there might be laws against putting children in such extreme stress.

Like “Survivor” (the only reality show I have actually seen), the contestants would be divided into teams for the first part of the series. It can’t be boys against the girls, because girls that aged are developmentally ahead of the boys and the girls would just slaughter the boys. Each team has a captain who chooses girl, boy, etc. Naturally there will be the delicious viewing of the last child chosen. This child may be crying. That brings up the crying rule: each team starts with 100 points a show and crying takes 10 points away from the team.

The children are in a pre-school like place with cubbies, sleeping mats and little furniture. After teams are chosen, it is time for lunch. The children are fed liverwurst sandwiches, skim milk, and dried apricots. They must eat their meals or 10 points will be deducted.

After lunch there will be an obstacle course and the winning team gets 20 points. If anyone on the loosing team cries, another 10 points will be deducted.

It is now naptime. It should be noted that Mozart has been playing on a sound system all this time in order to increase the child’s IQ which will be tested again at the end of the show. Any child who doesn’t settle right down at naptime will get a 10-point deduction for his team.

For the final event of the day, the children will change into bathing suits and be taken to a swimming pool. While wearing life jackets, they will jump off the diving board. The parents are present. Each child who fails to jump off the diving board loses 10 points for his team. The parents are allowed to yell out at their children as much as they want.

The day is almost over. The team with the most points wins for that day. The loosing team must pick a child to be kicked off. The pain and humiliation of that child is filmed. Each parent is given a CD of the day’s filming that they can watch with their child back at their hotel. This is also filmed.

We go along like this each day with various competitions and challenges. When we get down to 9 children the teams are merged and competitions are between individual children. Each meal is the same and also the same at the hotel. The children begin to crave normal food. They talk about nothing but food. Mozart is beginning to get on their nerves.

Individual contests and challenges go on and we are down to our last two contestants. They are most likely two girls. Make up-artists ply their trade and the two little girls get their hair done by top Hollywood professionals.

The studio audience votes on “Most Pretty” and the winner gets 20 points.

The two girls take the IQ test again and the one who has gained the most points or lost the least points gets 20 points. A points difference between the two girls can be offset by a complicated formula of voting by a worldwide audience.

The two girls have to stay at the preschool overnight without their parents and with only a silent adult. If one of them cries, she loses the game. If both are stoic, the winner is chosen live on national TV.

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