For the first time in the history of the The Learning Channel, TLC crews are headed south of the border to create a new reality show based on the exploits of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela. Entitled "Individuo solo del Aceite" or "Lonely Oil Guy," the show will be shown only in the United States.
With his express permission, TLC crews have already been following Chavez around Venezuela filming him in his day-to-day activities. It is a 24/7 thing for the crews as Chavez rarely takes time to sleep. He's always on the go with a boycott here, an aggressive move there, sanctions, sanctions, sanctions. You never know what he'll do next.
"But lest people thing we are going to focus on the vengeful side of Chavez, we want to make sure everyone knows that this is just another reality show. While vengeance is always an aim in most of our reality programming and it is interesting, we wanted to give the show more depth and show a side of Chavez that no one ever really gets to see aside from his closest aides," claims TLC spokesperson, Sally Alvarez Gonzalez-Rodriguez.
"We aim to focus on the Hugo Chavez people rarely see--the one who is set up on a blind date and then gets stood up. Sitting there in the restaurant by himself, one single red rose lying in the table in front of him as he slowly eats his menudo alone. That's the Hugo Chavez who will be starring in this reality series."
The crew already has some great footage of Chavez as he sits in his office contemplating his very existence. "What good is the ability to threaten to close off the entire southern portion of the Caribbean Sea to all cruise ships if I can't come home at night to a lovely wife and discuss it with her over a home-cooked meal?" says Chavez in one scene.
Without giving away too much, though, Gonzalez-Rodriguez says that although everyone hopes in the end that Chavez gets his wish-a third wife who, this time, really gets him-it will take more than one season to make that happen. "There is just too much going on in this man's life right now, what with fighting with neighboring countries and the United States and all, that he just doesn't have much time for a personal life."