I know I sound like a broken record, but there are a stupid number of Alaska TV shows airing: "Bering Sea Gold," "The Last Alaskans," "Alaskan Bush People," "Deadliest Catch," "Life Below Zero" and the list goes on. Maybe Discovery Channel will buy the BP building and the National Geographic Channel will purchase the downtown Legislative Information Office so the Anchorage skyline will be more reflective of what seems to be Alaska's largest industry: reality TV.
There are a couple of new shows that have ties to famous Alaska adventurers. First is Discovery Channel's "Homestead Rescue." A former star of "Ultimate Survival Alaska," Marty Raney will travel around helping people realize their dreams of living off the grid. You may also remember Raney from a fantastic episode of the Ricky Gervais-produced series "An Idiot Abroad." In the episode, after he tours Hatcher Pass with a reluctant British traveler, he serenades him with his original hit song "I Really Caribou You." The man's reaction is perfect and relatable as Raney sings "you're salmon special to me."
Raney will be bringing his son and daughter along to help teach people what it takes to live away from civilization. I'm actually most surprised that Raney was able to make the jump from starring on a National Geographic Channel show to Discovery Channel. I guess ratings wars can be bridged by a man with an Alaska-shaped guitar singing cheesy songs. "Homestead Rescue" airs Friday, June 10.
Next, a new show called "Missing Dial" on National Geographic Channel follows Alaska adventurer Roman Dial on his search for his son Cody Roman Dial, who disappeared in the Costa Rican jungle in 2014. The six-part documentary series aired May 22, just days after human remains and many of Cody Roman Dial's possessions were found. Investigators say the timing was coincidence.
The program seems to suggest that Cody Roman Dial disappeared as a result of foul play. But investigators say the new finding suggests otherwise, since they found Dial's passport, money and other belongings.
Finally, on everyone's favorite internet-outrage show, "Alaskan Bush People," the Brown family moved a busted SUV across Icy Strait on what they claim to be a homemade barge that was slapped together with barrels and pallets. All of this effort and drama got them a new skiff that they desperately needed, but once again the finances of the transaction were murky at best.
The real highlight was Noah Brown's visit from a lady who was clearly cast by producers. I mean, she appeared to have fake eyelashes, and no one with fake eyelashes is actually interested in courting a member of the Brown family … Most importantly, Noah tried to woo her by performing a breakup song he wrote about his last relationship with a Hoonah local (who we got to see lots of clips of through tinted flashbacks).
Let's just get into these fresh lyrics: "It's been a year, since I saw you last. It's been a year since my heart has past. It's been two years since last we met. You broke my heart like it was glass. But I fixed it now like you could never do, with a little tape and just a bit of glue."
I would definitely pay to see Noah Brown open for Marty Raney sometime. Can someone make this happen?
Emily Fehrenbacher lives in Anchorage, where she reviews Alaska reality TV. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @ETFBacher.