The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Sunday, May 26, 2002  

Brought to You by VH1

In a brazen display of shameless profiteering, VH1 this week launches a new series, “Military Diaries,” in the 10:00 p.m. slot on Monday nights.

From the VH1 web site we picked up this description of the show:

“In VH1’s new series, volunteers from America’s armed forces were given video cameras to tell their stories, discuss their hopes and dreams, and describe the role of music in their lives. Thanks to unprecedented access granted by the Pentagon, ‘Military Diaries’ offers a powerful first-hand look at our heroes, their stories, and the music that gets them through.” [Ed.: Emphasis added.]

VH1 put video cameras into the hands of U.S. servicemen and women -- the diarists -- in Afghanistan, Kuwait, Camp Pendleton, and on the U.S.S. Stennis, giving us an intimate look into their daily lives.

“Military Diaries” gets the complete multi-media treatment. The show has its own section on VH1’s web site that includes biographies of the diarists, a photo gallery, a message board, polls, a play list of the troops’ favorite tunes, and a link to the Pentagon.


Crude, juvenile, disrespectful, and banal, all at the same time.

Call it a documentary, done in 21st-century style.

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