So yesterday I got the chance to check out the premiere episode of Your OWN Show: Oprah’s Search for the Next TV Star (it premieres on the OWN Network this Friday at 9/8c)…and…yup, like everything else Oprah has a hand in, it’s a must-see.
To cut to the chase: the reason why this show is exciting is because the prize is your very own show on OWN. Yeah, there’s some kind of cash incentive and Kohl’s tie-in…but whoever wins this thing will see their life shoot off in a new direction forever. As Dr. Phil says in the opener: “It’s a game-changer.” This isn’t ANTM (Caridee English? Jaslene? …Eva? Where’ve you gotten to?). This is Oprah. AND SHE WANTS TO GIVE YOU A SHOW. So when the contestants practically pass out with excitement (tears, shrieking, etc) within the first five minutes…well, you completely get it.
But that leads me to the problem with the show: the contestants seem more like Superfans (some of them literally bow when Oprah first walks in) than actual personalities deserving of their own time in the spotlight. It’s only been one episode, granted, but to me none of them (save for Zach, who has so much charm you want to reach through the screen and hug him) seem like someone I’d be particularly interested in having come into my home every single day. The women in particular are grating: there’s a lot of cattiness already, and the standout villain (stay-at-home mom Leigh) is sure to set your eyes rolling. Hey, though – it’s reality TV, and the drama is what makes it so fun to watch.
And as a reality competition, the show certainly is fun. I just hope that the contestants can step up to the challenge and show us that at least some of them deserve this unbelievable opportunity.
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