Proliferation: sounds like a horror flick (practically Cronenbergesque!). Back in the day, I shuddered at the thought of reality television shows multiplying like cockroaches (consider that reality tv is cheaper to produce than series that employ actors and writers).

Reality TV: Surviving

Television writers and executives brainstormed.

"Hey, gang, let's put on a show! . . .

"We need something new and fresh and dynamic . . .

"Let's take a diverse group of people, 'real' people . . .

"Let's put them in a controlled environment for a fixed amount of time, and motivate them with money . . . throw in elements of desire and temptation and suspense . . .

"Hey! Let's put them in a haunted house . . . wait . . . no . . .

"On a boat at sea . . .

"On a polar ice cap . . .

"Wait! Let's put them on an island. Yeah, THAT'S the ticket. The skin factor alone should send the ratings through the roof!

"However, no ads or sponsorship for female birth control products or male condoms will be acceptable."

Survivor. Temptation Island. Only the beginning?

Clothing Optional Island
Okay people, we're overdressed here! Let's lose those thongs!

Weight Control Island
An extremely calorie-restricted regiment is utilized. Participants will be denied even rodents, bark, bugs, lizards and leaves. One can never be too thin. "Dahling . . . you look MAHvelous!"

Mass Psychological Training IslandYes, it's the ultimate encounter group experience! No one is able to escape THIS self-help seminar! If only Werner Erhard had thought of it.

Death IslandGroup members are selectively exposed to various deadly contagions. Who got the placebo? Who got the killer bacteria? Who will survive?

Gilligans' Island
Only those with the name of Gilligan need apply.

The Island of Dr. MoreauContestants are encouraged to bring their pets.

It's the future of reality programming, folks. Be sure to subscribe to TV Guide and set aside some viewing time.