Bad TV show concepts I have thought of over the years

August 31, 2011
man asleep on couch with remote

Win $250 for the worst TV show idea!

I willfully admit it. I love media, and especially TV — the deliciously mind-numbing pastime that keeps me sane and indulges my love of all things media. I’ve always had a particular fascination with how an episode is conceived of and comes into being. Face it, there are a lot of bad ideas, but none worse than what I have conjured over the years. So here, for the first time, I share with the world some of my own worst TV show concepts.

1. “Real Housewives of Punksy.” We rework the entire Real Housewives franchise with this blockbuster reality show following five Punxsutawney housewives as they contend with their own nitty-gritty world of backyard chicken coops and pickups that cost more than their homes. No fake-and-bake tans. No collagenized lips. No Barbie’d implants. Not even husbands with jobs. We watch as they argue over who makes the best perogies, whose plus-size Walmart blouse looks better, and who spent too much on QVC and beer over the past week. Casting is going well.

2. “Curmudgeons.” A twist on the show “Hoarders,” which I find utterly repulsive, yet strangely irresistible. (Hey, didn’t I own that 8-track in the 70s?) So I ratchet it down a bit. Instead of finding emotionally disturbed people, this show focuses on just those who are kind of killjoys. Always down. Eeyore-like personalities. The networks said it wasn’t edgy enough. So I am retitling it and floating it to some new execs. New working title: “Party Poopers.”

3. “Confront Your Father.” This pilot turns the show “Intervention” upside down by finding people who hate their fathers and haven’t spoken to them for years. First half explains the years of pain and anguish. The second half consists of our production team springing a surprise reunion where the child (now adult) confronts their father on everything he did wrong over the years. The more aged the father the better, and the hotter the confronter the better. Never sold the pilot. Still tweaking for cable.

4. “Amish and Anguished.” This one is a laugh riot. We follow a group of Amish kids as they rebel against their parents. Lots of skin and sin. Amish girls baring their ankles. Fifteen-years-olds drinking Cokes (fully caffeinated). Driving buggies at 20 mph. A rare glimpse into the Amish cultural wars. Only problem: way too much footage of kids harvesting crops.

Just a start. Believe me, I have more. If you have a bad TV show concept, share it and the worst wins a $250 Amazon gift card. No joke. And yes, if you are a Gregory FCA employee, you are specifically allowed to enter to win. We’ll let our own internal bad TV guru, Michelle Larkin, serve as the judge. (She watches more bad TV than anyone and was first to turn me on to “Intervention” and “Hoarders” a few years back.) Deadline to enter is Sept. 15.

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Joe Crivelli
Guest
5 years 11 months ago

I have to give credit for this one to my friend Dave March: "Homeless and Tagged". 12 homeless people are tagged with tracking devices, and their movements are followed and filmed. I would totally watch that show.

Kevin
Guest
5 years 11 months ago
Greg, I am about to make your day with six ideas. You can give my gift card to Kevin Maher… #1) "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire – Rupiah Edition" The plan is to make people think they are on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" and give them a bunch of easy questions. The people get pumped when they are doing well and then when they win the million is turns out to be 1 million Rupiah which is about $120. Then we watch the shock on their faces. You have to sit through 40 minutes of TV for… Read more »
Hannah
Guest
Hannah
5 years 11 months ago
I've got two ideas for you … 1. "Jersey Shore, PA: The Real Jersey Shore." Find out where the fist pump really originates. Think spray tans, tractors, and a whole lot of flannel. Featuring Jenny "Snacki" Smith, an overweight Sheetz employee; Kenny "K-Farm" Mills, the dairy farm owner with an identity crisis; and Sally "Last Call" Jones, the town's fishing champ who is a wannabe country star. 2. "Wawa- The Night Shift" A camera crew captures what goes on at Wawa during the night shift, from disgruntled workers, to the bakery delivery men and drunk college students who order buckets… Read more »
jimmy
Guest
jimmy
5 years 11 months ago

"ladies of the plight" – you take weezy (the jeffersons), mrs. garrett (facts of life), mrs keaton (family ties), and florida evans (good times) and have them all wax poetic about their glory years…like sex in the city meets depends.

Ellen Levin
Guest
5 years 11 months ago

OY VEY!! A laugh out loud comedy!

Join the Goldberg mishpokhe as they welcome home their pride and joy; their only son Abraham from his summer in Israel. Hilarity ensures as he greets his Orthodox mom and dad at the airport and proceeds to introduce them to his ham eating shikse fiancee. Tune in each week to see how the megile plays out and laugh along to lines like, "Mazol Tov! You're slowly killing your mother!" and "Only the Goyem!"

Joe Crivelli
Guest
Joe Crivelli
5 years 11 months ago

Here's another idea – this one from my friend David Parke:

I've been trying to get interest in my reality show "Crazy in Love", where a bunch of psychotic guys try to compete for the attention of a woman. The "twist" would be when half way through the season you take away their medications.

mmcloughlin
Guest
5 years 11 months ago
'Just the Glu-Ten of Us'Cut-throat contestants of huskier frames compete to lose weight. The catch? They also have to ring the register. While attempting to shed pounds, contestants will create and sell delicious baked goods made with gluten from an upscale Milwaukee bakery. But, if they sample the sinful snacks, they're out. One contestant will win with the highest final total combining percentage of weight lost and revenue generated by his or her treats. High comedy, high drama, high fructose corn syrup. 'Comma Drama- True Stories of a Centre Daily Times Copy Editor'Peer inside the riveting, complex world of copy… Read more »
Caren Lipkin
Guest
Caren Lipkin
5 years 11 months ago

Want to really bore people out of their skulls? How about a show about marathon runners and their training? Call it "Born to Run" or "Running on Empty" or some such cliche…Follow a group of folks training for an endurance event as they try to BQ, set a PR and/or reach their VO2 max, talk ad nauseum about their nutrition and injuries, and show clips of them running…and running…and running…and don't forget the ubiquitous Rocky soundtrack!

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