Sunday, February 14, 2016

TV: Fixer Upper

What's the #1 show on Tuesday night cable television? Some gritty prestige drama, or maybe a celebrity reality show? Nope, it's "Fixer Upper," a relaxing hour of home sales and renovation hosted by Chip and Joanna Gaines, the proprietors of Magnolia Homes:

Like most HGTV shows, "Fixer Upper" is a meditative experience with an unchanging structure - each week, a client chooses from one of three Waco-area houses, the dilapidated house gets redesigned and remodeled by Chip and Joanna, and there's a big reveal where everyone lives happily ever after.

Of course, you've seen this formula on dozens of other HGTV shows, but what makes "Fixer Upper" special is the Gaines family itself. Goofball Chip and straight-woman Joanna complement each other perfectly, with the kind of hilarious chemistry that only comes from a loving marriage and years of in-jokes and asides.

This all means that outtakes of "Fixer Upper" are funnier than a lot of network comedies, not that that's a high bar to hurdle:


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