Pamela Anderson calls for reality TV to be banned after deaths

Pamela Anderson has called for reality TV to be banned after the deaths of two former stars by suspected suicide.

US actress Pamela Anderson. Picture: Thomas Samson
US actress Pamela Anderson. Picture: Thomas Samson

Branding the whole genre an “epidemic of ugliness”, the actress posted on social media about her concerns for people entering the show.

Anderson has previously starred in Big Brother, Dancing On Ice and Dancing With The Stars and was candid in her opinion about the series and what effect it is having on the people who take part.

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“Did I enjoy being on a reality show?” she wrote on Twitter.

“Please no more reality shows or reality stars ... even France is polluted with them. It’s an epidemic of ugliness, superficial competitions, desperate and exploitative – for the artist.

“You are usually bullied into doing TV like this by agents fighting over commissions – you’re left without any great amount of joy or money- you feel used, dirty, and with no feeling of accomplishment.

“Unless of course – you attempt to find any meaning or redemption by donating all to charity – it’s how I forgave myself.”

Former Love Island star Mike Thalassitis, 26, was found dead from an apparent suicide in north London on 16 March.

Sophie Gradon, 32, who also appeared on the show, was found dead at her parents’ home in Ponteland, near Newcastle on 20 June last year.

In other reality TV shows, Wife Swap UK star Simon Foster died after a drink and drugs binge in 2008 and Australian Next Top Model judge Charlotte Dawson died by suicide in her Sydney apartment in February 2014.

Last week, a leading psychologist, Dr Arthur Cassidy, said the UK Government needed to regulate “toxic” reality TV shows to prevent more deaths.

He said: “In 20 years, I’ve seen reality TV become more odious, more fickle and they’re certainly not reality any more.

“I want to see the Government drawing up guidelines and legislation as soon as possible and I’m going to lobby parliament to do this. It’s toxic.

“We have to be able to regulate this to prevent more lives being lost over entertainment shows.”

Health secretary Matt Hancock also said reality TV shows had a duty to care for contestants after they become famous.

Love Island then released a statement saying it would offer offer “bespoke training” to all future contestants entering the dating reality show.

Producers for the ITV show added: “A review has led us to extend our support processes to offer therapy to all Islanders and not only those that reach out to us. And we will be delivering bespoke training to all future Islanders to include social media and financial management.

“The key focus will be for us to no longer be reliant on the islanders asking us for support but for us to proactively check in with them on a regular basis.”