The Learning Channel isn't very good at teaching things--unless, of course, your idea of scholarly enlightenment involves watching a kid drink Red Bull and Mountain Dew. The network's latest hit is a cultural catastrophe called Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.
It's about a vile child and her equally despicable family's attempts to turn the kid into a serial beauty pageant winner. They seem to think she'll become a song-and-dance icon along the lines of Shirley Temple. But Honey Boo Boo is less like the star of Bright Eyes and more like the monstrous manifestation of a fever dream.
Discovered on something called Toddlers and Tiaras, the creepy little girl looks like a doll--and not the good kind of doll. She resembles that talking emblem of decay from the Forbidden Zone in the original Planet of the Apes that Dr. Zaius refuses to acknowledge as evidence of humanity's past superiority.
"Honey Boo Boo" is the name 7-year-old Alana Thompson gave herself. It's unclear from the show if her dad, Mike "Sugar Bear" Thompson, named himself--but it's obvious that he's prone to questionable decisions, as one look at his daughter's mom reveals.
June is Honey Boo Boo's snot-faced succubus of a many-chinned mother. She, along with the rest of her frequently farting family, is quite disturbing.
During the inaugural season of Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, neither June nor anybody else seems to notice how weirdly sexualized the kid is, even when she "rocks her Daisy Dukes" for the judges. "Ain't no one bringin' home the crown but me," she announces and then squeezes her big roll of stomach fat for the camera before referring to "booty calling."
While delivering a lesson on how to save money on toilet paper, June says coupons are "even better than sex." After seeing two minutes of a Here Comes Honey Boo Boo episode, it's easy to agree with June--which means, if enough people watch it, the show actually wields the potential power to kill off the human race.
But perhaps a worse person than anyone from the Boo Boo clan is Barbara Walters, who placed the show's titular abomination on her list of 2012's most fascinating people. Then again, Walters is only 83. Like Alana Thompson, maybe she'll grow up.