×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

TV Review: ‘The Moment,’ ‘Deep South Paranormal’

The Moment” is a good idea, stretched rather uncomfortably and beyond its weight to fill an hour. People who abandoned careers in exciting fields — in the first two episodes, sports photography and NASCAR driving — are given second chances to see if they can live out their dreams. It’s an appealing notion for those who embrace the lyric that life is what happens while you’re making other plans, though the show doesn’t quite possess the necessary heft to pull off the conceit. Indeed, this USA network reality show can’t sustain what in hindsight feels more like a recurring newsmagazine featurette.

As a consequence, the premise must be padded, challenges concocted, and drama stoked. And while none of that’s unusual for the genre (think of how the situation gets milked in something like “Undercover Boss”), in this context, it still makes for a slow shuffle toward the finish line, as opposed to a triumphant race across it.

Former Super Bowl-winning quarterback Kurt Warner — who got his own second chance, having been plucked from the obscurity of the Arena Football League — is a logical choice on paper to host, but despite leading-man looks and a genial manner doesn’t bring much personality to the proceedings. The premiere, in which a mother auditions to work for Sports Illustrated, does provide insight into what makes a good sports photographer, but the run-up to a yea-or-nay decision grows flabby, and the tedium is even more pronounced in the second hour.

To its credit, “The Moment” doesn’t promise participants success, merely a shot at grabbing the brass ring — a concept to which many can no doubt relate.

That said, it’s hard to escape a sense that in a slightly earlier era, this sort of enterprise would have been offered as Saturday-afternoon syndicated filler as opposed to a ready-for-primetime player.

In that regard, “The Moment” demonstrates a fact to which Warner can no doubt attest: Just because you have the desire doesn’t mean you’re necessarily good enough to make the cut.

Meanwhile, sister NBCUniversal cabler Syfy offers the mashup title “Deep South Paranormal,” an almost pathetically obvious attempt to breed “Ghost Hunters” with “Duck Dynasty”/”Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,” and scare up some good-ol’-boy ratings in the process.

“Down in the South, they do things a little different,” the narrator, Keith, explains near the outset, “and the same applies when it comes to huntin’ ghosts.”

Oh puh-leeze. Unless you count the ZZ Top beards, this is the same night-vision photography shtick, as the Scooby gang investigates an allegedly haunted old mill in Louisiana.

“I think we’re onto something, Bubba,” Keith says, thinking they’ve encountered an apparition. Maybe, but given how often the music swells in response to pretty much nothing, we’re certainly onto you.

OK, so reality TV’s redneck wave (recently detailed in a good Los Angeles Times piece) hasn’t crested yet, but the attempts to cash in are becoming more ridiculous. In terms of upside, though, there are an awful lot of dead Hatfields and McCoys out there who met violent ends. So knock yourself out pannin’ for that Nielsen gold, Jethro — er, Keith.

The Moment

(Series; USA, Thurs. April 11, 10 p.m.)

Host: Kurt Warner.

Produced by THE Company. Executive producers, Charlie Ebersol, Justin Hochberg, Richard Hall; co-executive producers, Ryan Simpkins, Gia Galligani, Andy Scheer. 60 MIN.

Deep South Paranormal

(Series; Syfy, Wed. April 10, 10 p.m.)

Produced by BASE Prods. Executive producers, John Brenkus, Mickey Stern. 60 MIN.

TV Review: 'The Moment,' 'Deep South Paranormal'

More TV

  • Supergirl -- "Crisis on Infinite Earths:

    'Crisis on Infinite Earths' Recap: A 'Titans' Cameo and a Fallen Hero

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part One,” the premiere of the 2019 “Arrowverse” crossover. Bringing “Crisis on Infinite Earths” to the small screen has been years in the making, so it’s no surprise the epic five-part crossover kicked off with plenty of action on Sunday night [...]

  • Supergirl -- "Crisis on Infinite Earths:

    'Arrowverse' Team on 'Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part One' Loss and Crossover Stakes (SPOILERS)

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part One,” the premiere of the 2019 “Arrowverse” crossover event on the CW. The “Arrowverse” “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover kicked off with a bang: Oliver Queen aka the Green Arrow’s (Stephen Amell) death. With “Crisis” finally here, Harbinger (Audrey Marie [...]

  • Caroll Spinney & The Grouch36th Annual

    Caroll Spinney: Henson Family, 'Sesame Street' Colleagues Salute Muppet Performer

    Caroll Spinney, the puppet performer behind “Sesame Street’s” indelible Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch, was remembered by friends and colleagues as a gifted artist who dedicated his professional life to the show’s mission of educating pre-schoolers. Spinney died Sunday at his home in Connecticut at the age of 85. He limned the Big Bird [...]

  • Rene Auberjonois at the International Myeloma

    René Auberjonois, 'Star Trek' and 'Boston Legal' Actor, Dies at 79

    René Auberjonois, best known for his roles in “Boston Legal” and “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” died at his home in Los Angeles due to metastatic lung cancer. He was 79. His son Rèmy-Luc confirmed the news to the Associated Press. Auberjonois was a prolific television actor, appearing as Paul Lewiston in 71 episodes of [...]

  • Caroll Spinney, with "Oscar the Grouch,"

    Caroll Spinney, Puppeteer Behind Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch, Dies at 85

    Caroll Spinney, the puppeteer who played Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch for 49 years at “Sesame Street,” died Sunday in Connecticut after living with dystonia. He was 85. Sesame Workshop announced his death, calling him an “artistic genius” whose “legacy here at Sesame Workshop and in the cultural firmament will be unending.” Spinney’s death [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content