Fox, the home of such brilliant nuggets of TV gold as "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire" and "When Animals Attack" is once again pushing the envelope. Following in the success of the critically acclaimed PBS reality series "Frontier House", where families are sent back to a simulated 1893, to build their own homestead and live off the land for several months, and the similarly themed Canadian program "Pioneer Quest" which sends pioneers back to 1875 in the even harsher Canadian wilderness for a whole year, Fox announced it's plans to start it's own frontier survivor contest, but theirs will have an unexpected twist?
Fox executives admits that two hit NBC programs, "Average Joe" which twists Fox's own Joe Millionaire concept, and the wildly successful "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" which also airs on Bravo, inspired them to produce this new series. Insiders say this move was motivated by anger at NBC for usurping their now flagging "Joe" concept, and by Fox's need for more homosexual themed programming.
The new show, tentatively titled "Homo on the Range", will feature two homosexual male couples who will be dropped in the wilderness and expected to build their own shelters, kill and/or grow their own food, and basically live without indoor plumbing, electricity or fashion designers for an entire year. We've been told it's fabulous' by Fox, but they won't reveal much more than that. However, a commercial which will start airing next Tuesday, should give the viewer some idea of what to expect. The screen is black, then shows a small snippet of Fox's hit reality show "Simple Life" while a voice-over says, "If you thought Paris and Nicole's reaction to a wood tick in their bed was extreme, wait until you see what happens when Ray and Bobby find boll weevils in their linens." The screen goes black again and we hear a shrill scream, presumably from Bobby or Ray. "Homo on the Range" is set to replace "The Simple Life" on Fox's primetime schedule until "Simple Life 2" starring Prince Harry and Kelly Osbourne debuts in the fall.
Not to be outdone, ABC has also jumped on the homosexual bandwagon; announcing plans for a new show to debut some time next fall. Executives at ABC have yet to arrive at an exact concept for the new show, but they say that's not what's important. "These things generally start with a basic theme, you throw a catchy title on them, and they basically write themselves," said an ABC spokesman. "We do know the show will feature homosexuals, and we also know that we're planning to call the show Queer Factor'. We expect it to be a big hit."