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New TLC Show Devoted to White ‘Country’ Family Stirs Critics

Reality TV has struck again, with promos for TLC’s newest reality show, “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” igniting the wrath of critics and prospective viewers alike.

A spinoff of “Toddlers & Tiaras,” the show will premiere Wednesday at 10 p.m., exposing America to the family of Alana “Honey Boo Boo Child” Thompson. TLC has released an extended trailer for the show, in which she introduces the other five members of her family, including Anna, the “pregnantest” and her mother—and soon to be grandma—June, 32. Her other two sisters, “Chubbs” and “Pumpkin,” round out the crew alongside “baby-daddy” Mike, who seems less than elated to be involved.

One Youtube commenter brings up an interesting point about the family. Anna, aka Chikadee, is the Thompson’s oldest daughter at 17. That would mean that “Mama Boo Boo” conceived her daughter when she was just 14 or 15, at which time 40-year-old Mike, aka “Sugar Bear,” would have been 22. These are the sort of family values that TLC will be promoting. Of course Anna herself is now pregnant, and the family makes a habit of entering Honey Boo Boo in beauty pageants.

Obviously the show aims to portray what is likely the worst of rural America’s stereotypes, something that has already been attempted by cable shows such as History Channel’s “Swamp People,” Animal Planet’s “Hillbilly Handfishin’,” and truTV’s “Lizard Lick Towin.” Not to be out done, TLC has developed its own show, which seems to focus on just how “country” the Thompsons are. For all the complaints about shows such as “Jersey Shore” and “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” promoting poor public images of minorities, it seems as though no demographic will be spared.

“We like to be ourselves,” Ms. Thompson says in the video. “You like us or you don’t like us. We just don’t care. We love our little life and we’re having fun doing it.”

The show is so outrageous that it seems likely to launch a thousand Sociology Ph.d dissertations.

Is TLC’s show a step over the line? Judge for yourself.

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