Exploiting the Archives: What Would Ryan Lochte Do? Probably Something Stupid!
Reality shows are a guilty pleasure of mine because I am fascinated by the kiddie pool-shallow inner lives of attractive dumbasses with nothing to say and an obnoxious way of saying it. I was a fool for Couples Therapy and Family Therapy back in the day and during My Year of Flops’ return engagement over at The A.V Club I waded giddily into the fetid cesspool that is reality television more than once by covering abominations like Britney and Kevin: Chaotic, I Wanna Marry ‘Harry’ and What Would Ryan Lochte Do?
Not long after I wrote up world-class swimmer and even more world-class dumbass Lochte’s short-lived reality show for The A.V Club Lochte made the wrong kind of headlines all over again when he famously pretended that he’d been robbed at gunpoint during the 2016 Olympics in Brazil when the truth of the matter was that Lochte and some of his fellow dude-bros got ridiculously inebriated and vandalized a gas station bathroom.
When I read about that I found it very easy to believe. What Would Ryan Lochte Do? illustrated that getting blackout drunk and then causing an international incident through stupidity and arrogance is exactly what Ryan Lochte would do.
The show tried to depict Lochte as a lovable, good-natured idiot, a ridiculously handsome, cut playboy and idiot-savant who is seemingly too stupid too exist yet thanks to incredible natural talent is an Olympics champion many times over and an international celebrity.
In What Would Ryan Lochte Do? the titular dumbass doubles as a walking meme, a sentient brand who seems more concerned with shoving his idiotic catchphrase of “Jeah!” down the public's throat than winning more medals.
The show posits Lochte as a playboy who might be hitting on every woman he sees but really was looking for a good girl he could settle down with and his friends and family as kooky, larger-than-life characters dealing the best they can with the hurricane-force impact of Lochte’s high-powered personality and Olympics fame. Instead, Lochte came off as a loathsome douche bag concerned exclusively with getting laid and getting even more famous and his family and friends came off as hopelessly bland.
Needless to say, I was of course not at all surprised when the stupid, stupid, beautiful, beautiful Lochte once again made news not for his genius at swimming but rather his incredible stupidity at everything else. Yes, the swimming Einstein recently got into a whole lot of trouble for publishing an Instagram post of himself doing something illegal that violated swimming rules. Let me repeat that again: this genius fucking took a picture of himself getting an illegal advantage over fellow swimmers and then pressed send because he thought that would be an awesome Instagram post that would get a bunch of likes and not, you know, further evidence that he might seriously be the dumbest man ever to live, and that includes Donald Trump and his sons.
Sigh. You can’t make this up, can you? He’s like a Christopher Guest character come to life, only, you know, dumber and more oblivious as to how the world actually sees him.
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