In my continuing quest to find ways to spend the summer on my couch instead of productively (actually, I hurt my foot so I'm supposed to stay off my feet as much as possible, which sucks except that it makes me feel slightly less guilty for watching shows like the one that's the subject of this post) I stumbled on a new celebreality show that VH1 is putting on during their "Metal Month": Super Group. Basically, it's a mashup of The Real World (5 rockers, living in a house, having their lives taped) and Some Kind of Monster (let's watch some middle-aged heavy metal gods try to make music and fall apart at the same time) and it's AWESOME. The idea is that 5 rockers arrive at a ridiculously ugly house in Las Vegas, not knowing who else is going to be there, and the 5, once there, will have 12 days to put together enough original music for a live concert.
I am not really a hard rock chick. (I believe I had one Metallica tape (yes, tape) when I was in high school.) But I really enjoyed watching the first episode of this show. Not all of it was great. For instance, the obligatory macho crap about women was off-putting. But here are the reasons I think I'll keep watching:
(1) The cast. I've previously alluded to my love of Sebastian Bach. He was a very pretty star when I was at an age when girls get crushes on boys who are pretty rather than handsome. (A note on the picture at right. During the photo shoot one of his bandmates told him not to pucker like he always does and Sebastian protested: "I don't pucker!" Pictures don't lie dude.) And then, when he'd all but disappeared from view he took a role as a guitar player that spoofed his own image on The Gilmore Girls. And I believe there may have also been a Behind the Music episode on him which showed him living a fairly normal life in a nice suburban house with his very pretty wife and kids, and his BAND . . . Point is, I find Sebastian Bach entertaining. The rest of the cast isn't exactly boring: TED NUGENT! He's obviously a gun-toting kook, but . . . oh my is he fun. And then there's the porn-directing bass player Evan Seinfeld; quiet and seemingly intelligent drummer Jason Bonham; and shockingly normal (even with that crazy-ass goatee) Scott Ian.
(2) Watching creative types create can be fascinating. It can also be painfully boring. I think this show leans more toward interesting. I loved the Metallica documentary Some Kind of Monster, and while Super Group is unlikely to have the psychological power of that movie, it does share some of the "this is how a song gets made" interest. And if I'm going to watch celebreality, I feel better watching a show that focuses on the skills that made the people famous rather than, say, watching a train wreck about "celebrity" relationships like My Fair Brady.
(3) Did I mention that sweeps are over and I'm under doctor's orders to stay off my feet as much as possible?
ETA: My love for this show is not diminishing in the second episode. There was a brilliantly edited little jam session with Ian and Nugent intercut with Ian's interview where he made his hero-worship for Nugent plain, which was unnecessary because you could see it so clearly on his face (and the "best friends" lyrics the editers used to score the scene). As if that wasn't enough, they followed it up with an interview with the Nuge where he says, chuckling to himself the whole time, and I quote: "I'm hoping that our cameras are picking up on some of the cute little Ted adorations. I just find them cute, and I'm such a fan of cute. In fact I think the cuter the critter, the sweeter the meat when it comes to barbecue. So cute is not just an aesthetic it's actually a protein." I almost never laugh out loud, but the whole thing had me almost falling out of my chair. Watch this show!