For a show focused so much on the late-night antics of eight heavily oranged, heavily drinking New Jerseyites, you have to admit there’s still a subtle genius to “Jersey Shore.”
The reason we’re sticking around for a fourth season — when the cast makes the journey to Italy — is this: It’s fun to laugh at the grammar mistakes, the strange bedfellows and stranger hairstyles, but we’re dealing with a young, club-kid-rich cast totally willing to be in on the joke. Make fun of the cast all you want, take jabs at their dignity, ponder about the plunging state of humanity. But each jab just makes Snooki richer and more talked about. And, by all accounts, the cast is having a blast being the butt of our jokes.
Don’t believe me? Observe: Cast members JWOWW (Jenni Farley) and Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi have more than one million followers apiece on Twitter (Polizzi famously swapped tweets with with Sen. John McCain). Ronnie Ortiz-Magro has a truly ridiculous weight-loss supplement commercial. Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino gave a lukewarm roast (clip slightly NSFW) to Donald Trump. And my personal favorite, D.J. Pauly D (Paul Delvecchio), hawks Miracle Whip. It’s a sweet life at the shore.
So many questions swirled in my head when I heard the cast would be going to Italy. Do Italians share our obscenely high threshold for people who are famous for absolutely no reason? Will Snooki spend time in an Italian jail for, say, drunkenly exposing herself to a Colosseum guard? Will there will be opportunities to “GTL” — gym, tan, laundry — or will the crew’s Jersey antics be met with eye rolls, and possibly a torch-bearing mob? I guess I’ll just have to watch and find out, but if this ridiculous slideshow is any indication, cultural sensitivity will be kept at a minimum. Some might call this a tragedy, but, for better or worse, on this side of the pond it’s considered good television.