I've been thinking about this question recently, and I guess I'll take the space here to ponder it. I guess it came about because I recently heard that the Backstreet Boys are making a new CD and might be touring. Also, New Kids on the Block just came to my hometown too, and a surprising amount of fans showed up to see them play.
It blows my mind that there is still an audience for these out-lived, out-dated boy bands that are now getting a bit too old to be dancing around with light shows while singing songs about teenage love. It's just getting a bit perverted and gross, if you ask me.
So, I guess this whole idea spurs a few questions:
If you were a teenager and you were offered to be in a boy band or, if you're a girl, an all-girl pop band, would you join? (Given, you have a pretty decent voice and you aren't too bad looking. Consider the fame and the money, would you do it?)
If you were offered a spot on a Disney television show as a child or teenager, would you take it considering that your image would then be tainted as a goody-two-shoes, innocent, do-no-wrong kid? (Think of the money...)
And, if you were in a successful group that eventually called it quits (like New Kids on the Block or Backstreet Boys) and you split up for a while, would you come back to make some extra cash a few years later when you are older than you should be for that kind of work?
They're kind of complicated questions, but I really think money and fame are huge motivators for Americans. We don't even care what we're doing as long as we receive (or have a chance to receive) a huge sum of money. Some people just want to be on television. It blows my mind what people will do for money or fame, especially when you look at all of these ridiculous game shows--Wipeout, I Survived a Japanese Game Show, American Idol, America's Got Talent--let alone all of these stupid reality shows where people makes asses of themselves. People will go on TV for ANYTHING, which really takes the specialness out of it that everyone is looking for. But, some random reality stars (Jon and Kate Plus 8) hit random fame. That is what people are looking for, I think. Everyone thinks that they are so special and unique that once they get on television, someone will recognize their talent and sign them to some bigger deal, but it just doesn't happen. Or, it doesn't happen as often as people think it will.
I just feel bad for some of these people that come on television, spill some truly dark secrets or show some horrible side of themselves for entertainment value, and then go back to their normal lives, probably humiliated and haunted from how they ruined their reputation on the air. It's a sick way of entertainment, and I just don't buy into it.
What is really depressing is when celebrities go on these horrible game shows and reality shows to try to revive their fame. It's kind of like, "Hey, I'm still alive and need work!" and this reality show is the best they can do. All they can hope is that it triggers the eye of someone willing to cast them in something knew, or they can become notorious for something horrific and stay on talk shows and other bad game shows because they brought a lot of viewers to the screen. It's kind of disgusting, but it's more sad than disgusting. I think the example that hits the all-time low, besides Celebrity Fit Club and The Surreal Life, is I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! Depressing.
Back to the main point: it's hard to say who would take these jobs of fame and fortune at a young age. I don't think children and teenagers can really see what will come from fame and fortune, so they just think it's cool and accept the job. Parents will probably coerce the child/teenager into doing the job so they can share some of the riches, despite the trauma that might follow from failure or being a celebrity. That's sick too.
I also don't see why these old boy bands and other bands that previously bit the dust don't just call it quits. Can't they earn money some other way? Did they not invest well enough? Some bands that come back are cool, but others need to just let it go. Boy bands were a late-90s, early 00s trend that is long over. (Now boy bands mask it by actually holding instruments but playing the same pop-ish tunes, like, ahem, The Jonas Brothers, cough cough)
I couldn't imagine joining a pop group like that though. Have any of them ever ended successfully in a way that doesn't ruin the image of the artist? I think Justin Timberlake might be the only one, but I still think it's kind of cheesy. I don't know if I could sell myself out, even being a naive little actor on a Disney show. I guess it's easy to say now, but I guess certain people have different interests and motivations. It just wouldn't appeal to me though.
Anyway, I've ranted long enough. Maybe this will cause a reaction or a stir, maybe it wouldn't, but I just needed to have my two cents on this fame issue, reliving the past, and boy bands (yuck) that just won't go away!