TV Show Idea

Over on X, someone posted a joke meme about doing a show where today’s teenagers are forced to use 90’s technology with all it’s limitations, and film the meltdown. Yes, it probably would be an epic meltdown. However, it gave me the idea for an even better show that could help today’s youth learn and grow on several levels.

I see this show as a companion to Naked and Afraid though without the nudity. For those not familiar with the show, a male and female are dropped into a remote location without clothes and with only one item to help them survive for three or so weeks. They are usually people who have lots of outdoor experience and extreme survival skills. Before the lightning strike, I had half considered applying though I am a lightweight and piker on outdoor skills in comparison to their regular contestants. Nor am I nearly as good looking.

In my show, you take a group of yutes, er, youths and drop them someplace not even necessarily all that remote, fully clothed. In fact, you drop them there with all the tools they need to survive, and even survive in comfort (relatively speaking). I’m thinking an axe, hatchet, a couple of knives, and a couple of pots. Even throw in a tent or three, though I would make each one of those wonderful old-fashioned heavy canvas tents with all the interesting wooden poles that some of us have had the fun joy of helping put up before. Heck, even throw in a flooring system for it, seem to recall they were fun too though I don’t think I ever really worked with them. Finally, maybe throw in some misc. bits of hardware that don’t seem to make any sense to the kids, some twine, and some rope.

Not too close, but nearby, drop in a group of us more-seasoned people with the same supplies. Be willing to bet that more than one of us might smuggle in some cigars and such. Compare and contrast the two groups, as I would bet that the older more-seasoned group would have a well-laid out camp, tents up, latrine dug, and foraging parties out pretty quick. Heck, if there were some copper tubing in that miscellaneous hardware, one or more of us could improvise a still for water purification purposes (cough). The foraging parties would have instructions not to make contact with the youth but to observe. At least at first.

Initially, it’s about compare and contrast between the two camps. If the youth don’t discover the old farts, make contact after a set period and see if they are smart enough to ask for help. Rule is, the old farts can’t actually do the work for them, but can coach them. See how many of them will go for that, and if any of them smarten up and run with it. Would any of them ask what to do with that odd mix of hardware? Learn how to improvise a bow or make a spear? Snare? Field shower?

Lots of lessons could be taught, and not just survival. Good chances for positive personal growth on many levels. Meantime, fun and entertaining for the audience. Thoughts?

UPDATE: Rules.

OF can advise, suggest, or provide other non-physical assistance to the youth. They may not, however, perform any task unless it is to demonstrate something they are doing for their camp/use, and the task or product in question can not be given to or used by the youth group.

No quitting. Unless medically evacuated everyone has to stay for at least two full weeks. Failure to do so results in forfeiture of all pay, residuals, or other compensation, and studio retains rights to use audio, video, or other recordings in any media of the person who quits for five years.

Any participant who is injured and not evacuated, and unable to work, will receive a full share of food and water each day as they recover.

Any participant refusing to work or otherwise take part in the common survival forfeits all food and water. Any participant who demands that the non-working participant receive food and water automatically forfeits half their rations to the non-working person that day. If this results in more than a single share of food or water, it is up to the non-working person if they share the excess with others. Participants in each camp will be polled each day if there is a non-working person in that camp.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

8 thoughts on “TV Show Idea”

  1. interesting idea – some of today’s youths could handle it. counting my kids and their circle of friends there are plenty of them in scouts, who have had first aid training, who have done things like junior guards on the beach, taking rock climbing classes, have been avid campers since being toddlers, participated in sports – even odder ones like outrigger canoeing, have been hunting, buy books on foraging for the fun of it, etc. this is of course because of good parenting 🙂 and let me tell you, taking kids not even 2 camping is a test of ones self . . . that kid kept signing ‘car, home’ repeatedly as night fell

    1. LOL on the baby signing car and home! So glad your kids had that, so many today don’t. I’m really aiming at kids who have not had those experiences, though it would be fun to slip in some ringers (like your kids) in with them. In addition to the obvious fun parts, I really see it as a subtle leadership program like the old Project X leadership series. Hoping that if anyone does run with this that we can use it to teach leadership, teamwork, and without being too obvious civics and the old social compact. I can dream.

  2. I’ve played a lot of role playing games over the years, and read a lot more.

    There was a supplement to a game called “GURPS Ultratech” a while back, about really high tech level equipment and running a game in settings with that available.
    One idea was that as people get more comfortable in real life, they would start to do “survival” and “primitivist” stuff for fun. So you could run a session (probably not a continuing campaign) with e.g. a “survival” session gone wrong (you don’t get picked up at the end or whatever).

    I’m not sure how accurate the original idea has turned out. People seem to love *watching other people* try to cope. But the only ones who actually end up in those scenarios seem to be publicity hounds, where as long as they’re getting attention, it makes up for any other discomfort they may have.

    1. For an older (circa 1955) fiction take on that situation, check out Heinlein’s Tunnel in the Sky that goes through that same situation. (Training intended for potential colony leaders/pioneers, and the survival trip/test lasts a lot longer than planned.)

      “Watch out for stobor.” (from the book)

        1. If you use Kindle, the ‘zon has it for $7.99. Dead tree versions are spendy, though a hardcover triple book (Tunnel in the Sky, Time for the Stars, and Citizen of the Galaxy) is out there. Used copies from Amazon are running around $7-8, while a new one is $28.

          I had to cull most of my paperbacks 20 years ago for a move from Cali to rural Oregon, but I’m getting a few of them as eBooks.

          1. Good to know on Kindle, and sorry to hear of the cull! Glad you are getting some of them back one way or another.

    2. Interesting. I’ve not been a real fan of a lot of the so-called survival shows for several reasons, including many of the people selected/taking part. The only one I used to watch regularly was N&A, in part because the participants were a bit more “real” and you really do have to know your stuff.

Comments are closed.