Friday, September 2, 2011

LNN: Episode Insanity II:

Banjos!? The Legends Were True!

I should be off the hook after watching Parking Wars. There is no possible way things could be any stupider than that. I mean, who wants a show about parking enforcement? Evidently, enough people to get it renewed for a fifth season. Yeah. Thanks, America.

Look, I’m not exactly a hyper-genius. Take this for example: One balmy summer Saturday, when I was just a wee five year old lad, back in New York, I got really gassed up on sugary cereal and started bombing around the house in my underwear. Superman underoos FTW. At some point in this fit of fervor I decided that I was Superman, so I hopped up on the living room couch, proclaimed that which I believed in that moment and then I made one hell of an attempt to fly. Instead, I fell like a thirty-five pound sack of rocks. In fact, this plummet was so stellar that I smashed my head into a corner of the obscenely heavy coffee table that my father built (A table I think my folks still have, and I’m fairly certain is still obscenely heavy). I gashed my right eyebrow open and bled all over the place. There were stiches involved.

The point? Even in that stage of total madness, as well as the subsequent smashing of my skull, I am still not dumb enough to enjoy Parking Wars. I mean, what could possibly be worse than that? Maybe a show about the unfortunate and uneducated hunting for alligators in Louisiana…

Wait, what? That’s an actual show!? Aw, come on!!

Fine! I’ll review it, but I’m holding every last one of you accountable for my therapy bills!

Here’s the Netflix blurb on the series:

Set in the swamps of the Atchafalaya River Basin, this series follows a clan of Cajuns and one resident’s quest to nab a nasty reptile.

Charming. This sounds less like reality TV and more like an old episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

I’ve decided to cover the 3rd episode of the first season, called Troy’s Gamble because, well…:

Troy desperately needs to find a new honey hole – a corner of the bayou teeming with gators. He thinks he’s found one, but the rights to hunt it will cost him a lot of cash. He takes the risk – but will it pay off?

Hotel Foxtrot Sierra, people. We’re in for a ride. Strap in and let’s get ready for Swamp People.

  • The show opens with a viewer’s discretion warning that also tries to justify this show existing. We’re 10 seconds in, the show hasn’t made a sound yet and we’re already bursting with quality and real fruit filling.
  • Am I going to spend the next 42 minutes not understanding one damn thing anyone says?
  • Banjos! Run! Save yourselves!
  • According to this voiceover, our man Troy is apparently the gator hunting equivalent of Sherlock Holmes… The Asylum’s Sherlock Holmes, but Holmes nonetheless.
  • Nope. Not going to understand one word.
  • We’re moving on to a new person named Trapper Joe and all I can think about is whether or not he killed Trapper John, M.D.
  • And sure enough, I can’t understand anyone in this section, either.
    • Wait! Someone who annunciates! … He must be a plant.
  • Seriously? They put a rifle in the water and just shoot the gators? That seems anticlimactic for a show like this. Shouldn’t they wrestle for supremacy?
  • So we come back to Troy, who gets his boat stuck in the swamp and… wait, he paid thousands of dollars to hunt for gators? Holy smokes, dude! That’s a lot of money for you not catching anything. At least, that’s what I gather from the Narrator.
  • And now we join a man in a trucker cap, t-shirt, and overalls. We’re told he’s a mechanic, and welder, and he hunts gators year round. And he built Troy’s boat! Actually, to his credit, this guy has some impressive credentials in metalwork. I want to crack jokes, but I’m actually impressed with that guy.
  • TROY!!
  • Oh holy crap, this show is only half over! Why won’t the hurting end?
  • Shoot a gator! LIKE A BOSS! In the face! LIKE A BOSS!
  • Ok, first of all, the guy who was annunciating for me clearly earlier? That’s done. I don’t understand him anymore either. Second, yes. Yes they just kinda shoot the gators.
    • Ok, in all fairness, moving boat, gator going nuts. But I still prefer the rasslin’ idea.
  • We’re going back to the metalwork guy. I’ve decided he needs his own show. I’d totally watch something about him.
  • At this point I’m running out of things to say and the show still has 10 minutes left. At this point the formula goes:
    • Wander around looking for gators.
    • Find gators.
    • Shoot gators in face.
    • Repeat ad nauseum.
    • I’m bored now.
  • Oh, the drama has shifted for old Troy! Now he too many alligators, he can’t carry them all. So he needs to find help, which he does, and saves all his gators. Is this really the last segment of this show?
  • No, because Troy had to get paid, and they had to invoke the episode title.
  • There’s more!? End! End already! END!

Well, that was Swamp People. Final thoughts? The last 42 minutes of my life were spent trying to understand Cajuns. Burt Reynolds, where were you when I needed you?

Netflix Assumptive Rating: ****

Actual Rating: **1/2

The only reason I don’t completely hate this show was that metalworking guy who built the boat. That dude gets respect. Everyone else on this show just hurt my brain. Or, as our friend Troy might say, “Whoo hoo hoooooooo.”

Are you people done torturing me now, or do you have an even worse reality show for me to touch on?