My favorite show on television seems the least likely: “Swamp People” on the History Channel. It takes you into another world, away from your brother-in-law’s divorce and the quotidian of daily corporate life and into the natural world of the swamps of southern and central Louisiana. It’s a window into the Cajun culture, epitomized perhaps mostly strongly by Troy, an accented alligator hunter. The latest episode strayed from the all gator, all the time format into frog-hunting and shrimp-catching and snake-grabbing. And occasionally there’s a wide sweeping shot of the swamps from the air, and it’s beautiful in all its high definition goodness.
It was also the finale of Dancing With the Stars Season 12, or season 2 for my wife and me. I get a kick out of how short Brooke’s interviews with the stars are: it’s cotton candy for short attention spans like mine. It makes O’Reilly’s short interviews look like collegiate seminars by comparison. The success of the show seems to be at least partially due to the fact that people like to look at attractive people. Add to that the elements of dance and music and you have at least part of what made musicals like “Singin’ in the Rain” so popular. Good music, good stars and good movement = the makings of good entertainment, almost regardless of plot. In this case the favorite, Hines Ward, won. Not too surprising; the football players overachieve here (perhaps because women like to reward he-men for having the balls to ballroom dance).