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Before I begin my little rant, let me first acknowledge that it is easier to run a cable network than one of the so-called big four. Despite having less resources, the channel typically also has far less original programming to worry about. It’s easier to add one, two or three new offerings to a schedule than plug upwards of ten holes that may be on NBC or ABC. Plus, there’s far less expectations, less money at stake and usually, less egos to keep in check. Most people appearing on say The League are more pleased to be working than concerned over renegotiating contracts. That being said, there is no better run network on television, save CBS, than AMC. Don’t believe me? Listen to their first two unscripted offerings set to premiere next season.
The first is called Inside The DHS. Somehow producer Craig Piligian has convinced Secretary Janet Napolitano to let cameras inside the Department Of Homeland Security to let viewers get an inside look at how the governmental arm runs its day-to-day operations. In exchange for that access, the government is retaining the ability to censor anything that might be considered too inside. I’m actually all for that. There’s no reason I need to know what suspects they’re monitoring, but even without final editing say, Inside The DHS should be riveting television.
Beyond that, the network is playing off the incredible success of Mad Men with a new docu-series about marketing entitled The Pitch. Each week, the program will follow an individual agency as they pitch their idea to market a specific product. It’s unclear whether they’ll show competing agencies or just how far in the process they may carry the footage through, but it should be fascinating to see how these highly creative executives convince companies to go with them.
Rarely do I have confidence in reality shows before they premiere, but these two AMC shows are bordering dangerously on guaranteed hits. Even if one ultimately fails, I can’t blame the network for moving forward. I certainly would have.