Now, those of you who have been with me from the beginning pretty much know how I feel about reality shows. I am not a fan at all. Television has been flooded with so many low budget, non entertaining reality shows that all looked the same. Since Survivor and American Idol, there hasn't been an original idea in the genre at all. That is until tonight. The Sci Fi Channel debuted it's reality effort called "Who Wants to be a Superhero?" Hosted by legendary comic book icon/guru Stan Lee. You remember Lee's work.....Spiderman, Hulk, Fantastic Four, and X-Men. Not only were they huge in the comic book world, but years later (decades in Spideys case) were transformed into blockbuster silver screen hits! So, that said, I thought I'd give it a chance.
The following is a brief synopsis of the show........
Each contestant begins with an original idea for a superhero, a self-made costume, and their best superhero mojo. From thousands of hopefuls, Stan Lee chooses 11 lucky finalists who move together into a secret lair. There they will begin their transformations — and their competition for the opportunity to become real-life superheroes. Over the course of the series, they will test their mettle, try to overcome their limitations, and do what it takes to prove that they truly are super.
The finalists will leave their former lives behind and become their brainchild heroes, all under Stan Lee's watchful eye. Each week, our aspiring heroes will be challenged with competitions designed to test their true natures. No one will be asked to perform feats of impossible strength; our superheroes will be tested for courage, integrity, self-sacrifice, compassion, and resourcefulness — all traits that every true superhero must possess.
In the end, only one aspiring superhero will have the inner strength and nobility to open the gates to comic-book immortality. The winner of this six-week competition will walk away with their character immortalized in a new comic book developed with Stan Lee. And that's not all — the winning character will also appear in an original SCI FI Channel movie!
When I first saw the promos for the show, it came off as kinda goofy and campy, but I gave it a chance and I was pleasantly suprised. My 13 year old son and I sat through the whole thing, laughed at the show and had a good time. Imagine that, a cable TV show in primetime (and a reality show at that) that's actually okay for kids big and little to watch. Then as I watched the show, it dawned on me that there was something else that set this show apart from all the other reality shows that came before it. Instead of overblown talent, ego, attitude, greed, and deceit.......the contestants here are tested on traits such as courage, self sacrafice, integrity, and compassion. Now that is breath of fresh air don't you think?Yeah it's goofy. Yeah it's kinda campy. But it might be worthy of success, especially if enough fathers and sons sit and watch it together. Who Wants to be a Superhero...Thursdays @ 10pm on the SCI FI CHANNEL.
(Originally posted 7-27-06 on Yahoo 360)