WTF is TLC Thinking?

Polygamy: because 4 wives is better for ratings than 19 kids.

As I was channel surfing the other day, I paused on TLC to watch an old episode of What Not To Wear. After countless “Umm… no”s, a few “I wish Clinton wasn’t gay”s, and too many moments in the painful-to-watch but wildly-entertaining 360° mirror, the show went to commercial. And before I had a chance to flip back to Teen Mom, across my screen flashed an ad for TLC’s newest reality show: Sister Wives, a show that rethinks “love, marriage, and reality family.”

Yes— if you just clicked on that link, what you saw was correct. TLC (what was formally known as The Learning Channel) will be teaching Americans all about a topic we are just dying to sink our teeth into: Polygamy. Dubbed by many as the real Big Love, the show follows Cody, his 3 wives, 13 kids, and newest fiancé as they all prepare for Cody’s fourth wedding.

Yeah, let that one marinate for a second.
And let us all come together with one big “WTF, TLC?!?”

I’ll be honest, I didn’t think it was possible for TLC to get any more messed up. Growing up, I used to watch A Wedding Story and A Baby Story, tears filling my eyes as I saw how a baby was born or what it took to pull off the perfect wedding. Nowadays, though, I legitimately cannot remember the last time TLC taught me much of anything….besides what it looks like for a happy marriage to go up in (Ed Hardy) flames or when a little person gets a DUI.

Which makes me wonder: what those TLC people are smoking goes on in the TLC boardroom? How do they come up with their stellar frightening TV line up? I don’t know for sure, but I have a feeling there are brownies (yeah, that kind), bean bag chairs and conversations that sound a little like this:

19 Kids and Counting – A small-town family that doesn’t believe in birth control but does believe in a general lack of attention for each individual kid. Every day is like a field trip!

“So, Jon and Kate split up. We’re sorta screwed….”
“Yeah, and the two older girls totally hit their awkward stage.”
“OMG, I know! We can’t sit around and risk the same fate for the other 6. We need a new show. A new family. But we gotta think bigger.”
“We could do a show about fat people.”
“Oh, good call. Get on that. But we need another show with lots of kids. And Less Ed Hardy.”
“Yeah, that one blew up in our faces, right? They seemed so…Christian. We need God-fearing people.”
“Uh, I just saw something on YouTube about a family with, like, 16 kids. All with “J” names.”
[Entire team gets on Google.]
“JEDEDIAH? SOMEONE GET THIS DUGGAR FAMILY ON THE HORN.”

I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant. A show about women who are pregnant….and don’t know it.

“Dude, remember Rescue 911? And it had all those sweet dramatizations? We need one of those shows.”
“Totally. But it needs to have babies in it. Or little people.”
“Truth. That’s pretty much what we do. OK, how about this? Women having babies.”
“Uh, we did that. It was called ‘A Baby Story.’ Let’s take it up a notch…. I’ve got it! Women having babies in toilets!”
“YES! And in cars.”
“Two words: gold mine.”

Toddlers & Tiaras Outrageous parents forcing their children to spray tan, tease their hair and tap dance….all before the ripe age of 6.

“OK, team, the big guys up stairs are telling me we have to stop stealing show ideas from The Food Network. What ideas do you have for me today?”
“Does that mean we can’t do another cupcake show?”
“Right. And don’t pitch me ‘Steel Chef’ again either.”
“Alright. So, I was flipping back and forth between the Westminster Dog Show and Rugrats this weekend.”
[Team laughs.]
“Ha. I know. I was totally blazing. Anyways, I was really getting into both of them and I was all, ‘you know what would be better than this? PUTTING THEM TOGETHER.'”
“Yeah, little girls in eyeshadow and press-on nails are HOT.”
[Silence.]
“OK, so that was creepy, but there is an untapped market of creepy old men out there. This could be huge.”

The Little Chocalatiers – It’s a show about little people…who make chocolate.

“So, we need a new food reality show.”
“Another one? We already have ten and you know they are just watered down and annoying versions of Food Network shows….”
“Not like this one. Get this: we can do a show about monkeys that make chocolate while training to go into space. The anti-gravity chamber makes it way more delicious and gives the chocolate a lighter flavor, and then…”[Receives awkward stares. Composes himself.]
“OK, fine. How about little people who make chocolate?”
“Can we dip them in chocolate for the promos?”
“Of course!”
[Table erupts in cheers.]

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