duckyxdale

9/06/2005

TLC's Town Haul - Season 3


The third episode of the third season of the previously stellar make-over show �Town Haul� has led me to one conclusion� I HATE TY PENNINGTON MORE THAN BEFORE!

Sure he�s on another network and another show but the saccharine success of his weekly weeper has tainted what was one of the most compelling and emotionally sensitive and provoking make-over series to date. Seasons 1 and 2 of �Town Haul� focused on giving small Podunk towns a revamp in hopes of brining the community back together while showcasing the incredible charm, warmth, and sensitivity in Small Town, USA. I often cried because we spent like 8 weeks with the same people with multiple projects running over multiple episodes. You had more time to get emotionally invested so that when the reveals came, I was blubbering because I knew how much it meant for these small town folks. It was amazing and humbling to watch.

This season they once again picked a small has-been town, Washington, Missouri with a similar cast of local characters and a time gone by flavor. The hook this season though is that they were no longer going to focus on beautifying Main Street or the Village Square to rejuvenate business and community but rather focus on 6 families or projects that the town itself elected to be redone. Yes, they haven�t really gone too far off track but where the cheapening comes ala �Extreme Home Makeover� is in the sad sacks they�ve chosen to make-over. Don�t get me wrong, the stories are horrifying and harrowing, showcasing how the human body and mind can overcome the odds and they are great choices but the first two projects were so similar to the people picked for �EHM� that I wonder if they were the second hand left overs from ABC.

The first family had both a Mother and Father with debilitating illnesses and two adopted children on top of a failing lawn service that the extended family took over to help this family survive. It was incredibly touching and quite the story; the renovation was classy and appreciated but a couple times I thought the piercing serene pacing would be shattered by that blowhard on a bullhorn Ty. Of course, Gen and her crew refuse to resort to Ty-tactics which is what still sets this show apart. The second family was the one that had me distraught. The husband was a veteran who had no body below his torso. He�d been sent to a nursing home because the family house cannot accommodate his wheelchair or his medical needs. He has not slept in his bed or with his wife in almost 5 years. They have a gorgeous teenage daughter that is heading off to College and she�s worried about both her parents as she will not be there to help or keep her Mother company. �Town Haul� to the rescue!!! They completely renovate the house to make it handicap accessible including an adjustable bed so he can move back home! Hell, they even sent the daughter to Elite modeling � they hooked this family up! I was blubbering once again so don�t get me wrong� I still love this show!

Week 3 brought on a true �Town Haul� project as they renovated and career counseled a local family restaurant that was the staple in the ever emptying Main Street area known for their �Mile High Pie�! This was a welcomed return to the �Town Haul� I grew to love. It featured quite the local eccentrics and the Americana we are so removed from. Plus, they did a killer remodel! I would eat at that place, those pies looked unreal!

Here�s to hoping it continues and to never hearing a bullhorn.

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