September 24, 2005

TV: Three Wishes

TV doesn't get any more sentimental than this show, the latest entrant in the Queen for a Day subdivision of reality TV.

Host Amy Grant and her team (made up of veterans of assorted home makeover shows on TLC) visit a different town in each episode and make wishes come true for three people.

We start in Sonora, California, where a 10-year-old girl needs major facial reconstruction after an auto accident; a 13-year-old boy wants to do something special for his stepfather; and the high school cheerleading squad wants to repair the school's dangerously inadequate football field as a tribute to their coach, who's in the hospital with acute leukemia.

With the help of other townspeople and lots (and I mean lots) of corporate-sponsor product placement, all the wishes come true.

Yes, it's sentimental and emotionally manipulative and cheesy as hell. But at the end of the show, when that boy is reading his message of love to his new father, on stage in front of the whole town, I admit my eyes got misty, and I am not easily moved to tears.

I'm not likely to keep watching; I don't find the philanthrotainment genre terribly interesting as a rule, and this one in particular contains even more "let's all pray" and "thank god" stuff than most, which I find annoying. (I assume that's because Christian singer Grant is not only the host, but one of the producers.) But for those who do enjoy this sort of TV, Three Wishes should certainly meet their needs.

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