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For years, fans of The Biggest Loser have been watching people of all sizes busting their asses to lose weight and win money. Series creator Dave Broome is switching up that formula for his next NBC reality series, called S.T.R.O.N.G., which will put the focus on contestants getting fit and gaining muscles. Just in case that name didn’t already clue you in on that.
According to NBC president of alternative and late-night programming Paul Telegdy, S.T.R.O.N.G. is less inspired by Biggest Loser than another reality competition on the network’s lineup. Here’s how he described it, according to THR.
Dave crossed the finish line on a creative challenge I’d thrown to several producers. If there was a show that would get people ready to be a contestant on American Ninja Warrior, what would it be? Multiple people came in with pitches, and he blew them away.
I’ll eat my low-calorie hat if this new series doesn’t offer the winner an instant spot on American Ninja Warrior. But before anyone can win, they have to go through the competition itself, which will pit twelve contestants against each other, with six men and six women being put through a series of weekly physical challenges. To be expected, one person will be eliminated from the show each week. But there are no real losers, since fitness is the main goal here, right?
Interestingly, each contestant will get their own personal trainer. Each of the men will get a female trainer, with each female getting a male trainer. That could create some interesting drama, although the inspirational objective might keep all the extraneous goings-on swept under the rug. That’s okay, though.
Now let’s get this name thing out of the way. The show’s full title is S.T.R.O.N.G. (Start to Realize Our Natural Greatness), which is…well, terrible. Acronym titles are awkward enough, but following it with such a cornball slice of affirmation definitely doesn’t help. But if it gets people inspired to stay fit and keep their bodies in check, the name really doesn’t matter.
While these kinds of series don’t often attract my attention, I can’t deny that reality programming with good intentions will forever be more applause-worthy than shows that just focus on pampered people being complete dickheads to everyone around them. With America’s Got Talent, The Voice, The Sing-Off and more, NBC is cornering the market on “make you feel better” material.
It isn’t clear exactly when NBC is going to push forward with S.T.R.O.N.G., but THR reports that production is planned to last around three months – one week for each contestant – and that the premiere will likely come at some point next year. We might have another two seasons of Biggest Loser by that point.