I had high hopes for the new Jillian show, but after giving it two chances I’m just gonna go ahead and say, “Wait, what?”
Nothing against Bob, but she is my favorite trainer on The Biggest Loser – supreme badassness notwithstanding, you can tell she very much BELIEVES in what she does and seems to really care about helping people (albeit in a scary, drill seargent way). And we all know how much I love her 30-Day Shred DVD. So I thought, Great – a whole show of just her inspiring and helping people and then in turn me, without the silly contest and annoying team back-stabbing.
Um, no. Well yes, but no. Okay, the premise is pretty good; families around the country have written to what I suppose was a request situation set up by the show, the producers or whomever picked out the lucky few and they each get a week with Jillian who will teach them how to eat right, kick their butts into a gym (where are all these 24-hour gyms they always show on these shows? I’ve never seen one) and a week later, they’d have all the tools they’d need to change their lives and all get into shape. Then of course the payoff – six weeks or so later Jillian comes back to check on their progress and of course everyone done good and I get to see my beloved before/after pictures.
Okay, that doesn’t sound so bad when I read that so let me just get on with what my issues are:
– The show is heavy (that pun came out of nowhere) on the families’ psychological issues and spends too much time showing Jillian act as a therapist. She does do a little of that on TBL and I deal with it, but this is serious overkill. If I wanted to see serious family mental issues, I’ll switch it over to TLC, thank you.
– With that said, Jillian showing emotions such as sympathy (with tears!) and extreme joy (smiling and clapping!); well, that’s just not natural and it truly creeped me out. I guess because it seemed weirdly fake, which is ironic since I’m guessing that’s supposed to make Jillian seem more real. She’s a robot and that’s perfectly fine, but robots with feelings freak me out because obviously their next step is taking over the earth.
– Am I supposed to suspend disbelief to the point of seeing that after one week, a lifetime of bad eating habits and slothfullness will be corrected? Apparently so. But I don’t. Obviously if I knew Jillian was coming back to check on me in six weeks I’d be an excercising, lettuce munching fool, but what about after that? I just want to see these people a year later and then maybe I’ll lose some of the cynicism. You can say the same thing about TBL contestants, but at least they have months at the ranch, where eating well and working out literally becomes their way of life under the constant guidance of personal trainers. Months. Success stemming from that is just way more convincing to me.
– A little heavy with the stereotyping. For example the first episode showed an Italian family. Okay, we get it producers. Italians like pasta and don’t like vegetables too much, badabing! In fact, this family claimed to NEVER eat green vegetables. Again, what? How are you ALIVE? But then magically after Jill takes the daughter on a fun trip through the local grocery store’s produce department, all of a sudden the family is happily stir-frying (in water or broth, I’m certain) up a bunch of crunchy green stuff – no. It just doesn’t work that way. People I know who hate vegetables are pretty consistent with their hate and most likely wouldn’t change no matter who was yelling in their face.
Okay, that’s all. I’m sorry for the ranty review, but man what a let-down. Maybe it’s my fault for expecting something different but when I watch a show like that I want to feel uplifted and motivated to just break out into jumping jacks right there. All this makes me want to do is watch an episode of Family Guy to jar me out of the sad mood I’m in.