Film and TV

Another long-lost 'Alaskan Bush People' relative headed to Browntown?

Just when you think things couldn't get any weirder, a press release comes out with the title "Eighty-Three-Year-Old Disabled Grandmother to Make 7000 Mile Trip Before She Dies to See Estranged Daughter Who is Reality Star in Alaska."

The journey is being called "Memaw's Trip to Alaska," and will supposedly follow the mother of "Alaskan Bush People" matriarch Ami Brown as she travels from Texas to Alaska on June 28.

According to the press release from her great nephew, who says he's financing and recording the trip (he's already set up a channel on Youtube), Memaw suffered from a stroke in 2012 and has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. Everyone should "(t)une in to see how this heart rending story will reach its final conclusion, and see if a heartbroken mother will get to see her long lost daughter before she takes her final journey."

That seems so morbid. But Memaw looks so adorable I was thinking this could be a more uplifting show about family being reunited. I also can't wait to see her interact with her long-lost grandchildren as they speak in their bizarre accents.

It's unclear if this will become a plotline on "Alaskan Bush People," but my guess is not if in fact it's being privately funded. I just hope Memaw knows they might not actually be in Browntown when she goes looking for them.

[Related: Rumors swirling that 'Alaskan Bush People' family is actually living in a lodge]

Next up on the actual episode of "Alaskan Bush People" called "Judgement Day," Billy and Bam finally went to Juneau to serve their time for stealing dividends. After epic amounts of hyped-up drama, they just walked off the boat into the Juneau harbor without much fanfare. It was as anticlimactic as every "close" bear encounter we've seen on this program.


This week's highlights consisted of a) one of the Brown children eating what appeared to be refried beans straight from the can and b) two other Brown children practicing target shooting with what appeared to be perfectly good jugs of milk. Maybe they were just filled with water, but for a family that spends so much time talking about using everything they can in the Bush, why ruin perfectly good milk jugs?

Finally, on "Homestead Rescue" Marty Raney's overexposed chest helped an apparently incompetent couple in Virginia build an outhouse, chicken coop and pig pen.

The couple had moved out of the city to run a "free range" pig farm, and the Raneys judged the hell out of them for everything they did wrong. From building their house next to a giant tree when there's the danger of tornadoes to pooping wherever they please, the Raneys were seemingly grossed out by this couple's decisions and not afraid to express it. This week's cringe-worthy, folksy Marty Raney quote of the week: "They have 20 acres of pig-demonium."

Except for Memaw, everything is on break this week for "Shark Week," and everyone is on break for America's birthday. Good luck and Godspeed, Memaw. We're rooting for you.

 Emily Fehrenbacher lives in Anchorage, where she reviews Alaska reality TV. You can reach her at or on Twitter @ETFBacher.


Emily Fehrenbacher

Emily Fehrenbacher lives in Anchorage and writes "Reality Check," a regular look at reality television set in Alaska.