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How Celebrity Big Brother Proved That Younger Viewers Aren't the Dimwits They're Perceived to Be

16/09/2014 16:58 BST | Updated 16/11/2014 10:59 GMT

The recent series of Celebrity Big Brother has shown that the 16-25 demographic aren't as dumb as some would have us believe.

Now that the latest Celebrity Big Brother has rumbled to its end, what have we learnt? One, you wouldn't want to spend longer than it takes to lick a stamp with Hollywood star Gary Busey and his pongy pants. Two, Strictly's James Jordan is a hot head who reckons he's the Brad Pitt of the dancing world. Three, George Gilbey from Gogglebox is a total sweetie.

But most interesting of all, is the way younger viewers digested the show and exercised their vote to save.

For years it's been assumed that 16 - 25 year old viewers - widely considered the target audience of shows like this - are only interested in watching the younger stars get boozed up and fall into a showmance. But this series in particular has shown that younger viewers are actually a lot more discerning than they are given credit for.

Not only did they ensure that numbskull reality stars Lauren Goodger and Ricci Guarnaccio took an early bath in the final week, they also chose to put six stars over the age of 25 into the final and eventually voted 70-year-old Gary Busey their ultimate winner! Go viewers!

But that wasn't all. Earlier on in the series they voted 60something Hollywood star Leslie Jordan their most entertaining housemate, enraptured by his eccentric ways and quick wit. Well fancy!

So what does this tell us? One, that older stars brimming with character and experience still have a valid place on our telly boxes. And two, younger viewers can actually be entertained by individuals of all ages.

Not that you'd think so, from what you see on TV or in mags.

With a terrifying belief that the demographic have as many braincells as Amy Childs and Joey Essex put together (ie, not many!), TV and mag bigwigs mindlessly force feed these poor sods a dodgy meat-free diet of vacuous non-entities and brain-dead shows, thinking this is all they are able to find interest in.

Of course, this couldn't be further from the truth as the majority of young people are actually broad minded and intelligent so and sos!

So where has this ridiculous assumption come from?

From certain individuals in power, I'd say, who have no real understanding of what their audience really want.

But it wasn't always this way. Years ago, when I was 15, I, like many of my peers, were hooked to OAP sit com The Golden Girls. The four main characters may have been 60 plus, but that didn't stop us from laughing our socks off. The show was absolutely hilarious and transcended age, packed to the gills with cheeky innuendo, witty one liners and bitchy put downs.

This was at a time when teens and young adults were treated like they were grown ups. Magazines like Smash Hits celebrated the superficiality of pop music, with in depth features written with sophistication and humour and never ever dared speak down to its reader.

Similarly mid-80s horror comic Scream - which was aimed at 12-16 year old boys - featured weekly tales of terror in which folks met grisly ends courtesy of blood-sucking vampires, deranged monsters locked in attics and vengeful lifts. It was great stuff and didn't harm any of one who read it.

Can you actually imagine finding a kids' comic these days featuring murder, torture and terror, or a teen magazine that boasts meaty articles longer than 500 words? Er, not likely!

So what happened? When was it decided that young people were too dumb to be addressed as adults? I really don't know! But the result of this dumbing down of society has been evident for years and as a result ratings have tumbled and sales of meatless teen magazines have dwindled.

The powers-that-be have forgotten that when you're young, you always aspire to be older. No one ever wants to be found reading or watching something that is specifically designed for them, mainly because they are patronising. Which is why Smash Hits and its kind are no longer with us. They were, sadly, dumbed down out of existence.

In reality, young people today are attracted to all sorts of TV shows, books and films. Not all young people want to be the next Lauren Goodger. They have varied tastes and pigeonholing them is impossible.

A recent poll even highlighted the fact that this generation of youth are the most sensible yet, having ditched mindless boozing in favour of reading - yes reading! - and nights in in front of their computers.

Sadly, it's the TV bods and mag eds who continue to fail young people, and hurl wishy washy product in their direction. And this is what I worry about most! Why? Because this next generation of consumer will grow up to think that what they are being fed by the media is as good as it gets. And it's not. Life is better.

But I am ever hopeful and believe in young people.

Just look at the amazing youngsters and young entrepreneurs who have found their voice through blogs and social media. There is a large army of them who are finding their own way, setting their own agenda and ignoring the patronising tosh being fed them by the clueless powers that be.

And it's these young people, the ones with real get up and go, who we should be looking to in these desperate times for hope, so that this country doesn't end up becoming a nation of dimwits!