Extreme Couponing: The Clippers That Made the Playoffs
For those disappointed LA Clippers fans, calm your nerves, there’s another group of Clippers that have successfully lasted past the first round of the NBA playoffs. That new and controversial group of clippers are currently being featured on TLC’s new show, Extreme Couponing. Extreme Couponing is a work of pure genius that succeeds dramatically and fails ethically. Accordingly, Extreme Couponing has already become the Richard Nixon of reality television shows. They may not be morally correct, they may not be good for the soul, but you bet your bippy they’re more entertaining than Gerald Ford and Cupcake Wars. Extreme Couponing strikes a certain nerve, I’m not sure if I love it or hate it, but you can bet the farm I’ll be dropped out turned on and tuned in to every new episode Wednesday 9PM EST on The Learning Channel.
I just got off the phone with my mother who called me after I finished that last sentence, and during our conversation she said, “if you don’t watch American Idol next Wednesday I’m going to be very mad at you.” When I replied, “but I can’t Mom, I have to watch Extreme Couponing,” her reaction was priceless. “What did you just say?” I let the joke end there and continued with our conversation.
Say what you will about Extreme Couponing, but the show’s made it to the NBA playoffs. I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict a winning season. The show certainly doesn’t have depth, but what a wonderful roster! There was a guy on last night’s episode who looks like he has sex with food products (f*cking a pie’s not endearing when you’re 30), who went out of his way to use food to make care packages for soldiers in Afghanistan. That’s nice and all, but what about all the people starving in the world today? What about this guy’s local soup kitchen? I hope his local news did a fluff piece on his charitable act. Chicken Soup for the Soldiers. It sounds like a Lifetime original movie. Hell, at this point, I’m so far gone on this coupon trip, I’d probably watch it. This is exactly what works about the show. Even though it is definitely morally reprehensible to stockpile food like the people on this show do, there’s something undeniably entertaining about the show’s content. After watching it, you just can’t stop thinking about Extreme Couponing. Perhaps the most intriguing facet of this show is something I’ve learned from this Learning Channel television experience: Americans can continue to relish in excess even without any money.
“You may say America has no culture anymore, but have you seen Extreme Couponing?”
Another equally entertaining and disturbing aspect of Extreme Couponing, is when the TLC Clippers add religion to the mix. The idea that God is in anyway helping jobless women amass ridiculous stockpiles of select grocery items may be the most absurd thing I’ve heard about religion all year. Maybe there was a divine spark that initially helped these struggling women feed their families, but I’m pretty sure God doesn’t really support hoarding. Be fruitful and multiply coupons? Come on down to Seventh Seal Supermarket…we’re crucifying our prices! Religious fanaticism and supermarkets: a match made in someone’s conception of Heaven.
The manufactured story arcs of the show are pretty genius. Woman clips a ton of coupons. Cashier rings up the order. Look at how much it costs without coupons! Fear. Love. Capitalism. The cashier scans all of the coupons and there, conflict resolved. Happy ending. Add to the stockpile. On to the next one. It’s ridiculously formulaic, but the fact that The Learning Channel manages to milk drama from the barren cow of supermarket shopping and turn it into a successful reality show is true marketing brilliance. Extreme Couponing’s season premier attracted over 2 million viewers. That’s like the entire Jewish population of Israel watching a show about coupons.
As a former supermarket cashier, watching Extreme Couponing has been both traumatic and therapeutic. It has brought back horrible memories of customers getting on line with ziplock bags of coupons. As a former cashier, I can say that scanning a ton of coupons is a totally soul-sucking experience, and that cashiers should be tipped when you do that to them. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t extract some malevolent pleasure when the machine wouldn’t accept an annoying customer’s coupons. This brings to light something that Extreme Couponing totally neglects: the cashier experience. But I guess in a world where we don’t even think of our supermarket cashiers as human beings, why should Extreme Couponing address their experience? I can guarantee one thing that’s on the mind of every cashier who rings up an Extreme Couponers order: “I cant believe I’m not getting paid more for doing this.”
Extreme Couponing may be the most intriguing reality show on television today, or it may be the worst thing to happen to supermarkets since tabloid magazines. Regardless of how you and I feel about Extreme Couponing, the Clippers made the playoffs, so now anything can happen.
More Fame Hype Stories:
Follow us on twitter@thefastertimes
- 1 First Openly Straight Figure Skater Comes Forward
- 2 Brooklyn Man Now Living Entirely Off Own Beard Garden
- 3 “Cra Cra” Now Official Diagnosis in New DSM (DSM-5)
- 4 OfficeMax Marketing Director Struggling to Make Staplers ‘Sexy’ and ‘Conversational’
- 5 Homeless Guy Woos Silicon Valley VCs with Low-Tech Crowdfunding Startup
- 6 Area Man Tailors Life To Be More Relevant To His Hulu Advertisements
- 7 Fan Banging Furiously on Glass Could Be the Difference in Hockey Playoffs
- 8 Survey: 88% of Eagles Fans Too Drunk To Spell Nnamdi Asomugha Last Season
- 9 Attorney Actually Starting to Believe Own Bullshit
- 10 Local Mom Won’t Stop Being First Person to Like Every Goddamn Thing Son Posts to Facebook