Friday, October 9, 2009

Coming Soon To BET... The Mike Vick Show.

I'll admit, happy as I was for Mike Vick getting a second chance in the NFL, I'm also equally pissed at his performance to date as an Eagle. I say this purely from a fantasy football standpoint, because I picked Vick up after week 2, and he'd done jack sh*t for me so far.

[Editor's Unrelated NFL Note: Man, is that Lebron somethin' else or what? I've heard of dudes getting teammates they didn't like traded, but how the ham sammich do you get players in entirely different sports that you don't like traded? That, my friends, is power.]

Anyways, I don't really know what we expected. The guy is playing out of position, and is shaking off 2 years of rust. Sometimes you wonder if he's merely putting himself through this cause he's got some massive debt to pay off. BTW, I assumed Vick's debt was due to overspending of some sort, or baby mama drama. No, this dude is in debt because he made a very bad investment in a car rental dealership that went belly up. How boring.

Nonetheless, bills gotta get paid one way or another, and Vick's gotta have a side hustle just like the rest of us. Enter Modern Famous Negro Cliché #125 - The PR-Friendly Reality Show.
He's out of prison, back in the NFL, and now Michael Vick is going to star in his own television series.

The quarterback, who took his first regular-season pro snap just two weeks ago after serving 18 months in prison, is partnering with BET for a new eight-part docu-series scheduled to air early next year. The program, tentatively titled "The Michael Vick Project," spotlights his controversial comeback with the Philadelphia Eagles while also examining his tumultuous past -- including his troubled childhood and his 2007 arrest for running a dogfighting ring.

"I just want people to really get to know me as an individual," Vick said last week in an interview from his home in Philadelphia. "What I want to do is change the perception of me. I am a human being. I've made some mistakes in the past, and I wish it had never happened. But it's not about how you fall, but about how you pick yourself up."

The onetime NFL star's decision to expose his private life to a television audience follows a flurry of recent news and sports media interviews, which began with "60 Minutes" in mid-August. The Vick series is a gamble for a quarterback who is eager to rehabilitate his tarnished image but also doesn't want to incur the further wrath of animal rights protesters, many of whom argued against his reinstatement to the NFL.

That may be difficult. Officials with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals expressed skepticism about the project.

"People who abuse animals don't deserve to be rewarded," said PETA spokesman Dan Shannon. "They shouldn't be given multimillion-dollar contracts . . . or given the privilege of being a role model.

"We don't believe Michael Vick understands the seriousness of his crime. I think he's sorry he got caught, but only time will tell if he's truly remorseful."

No one associated with the production would comment on Vick's compensation for the series. In August, a federal judge approved Vick's six-year plan to repay creditors an estimated $20 million and emerge from bankruptcy.

Producers of the Vick series emphasized the program should be considered a docu-series -- not a typical reality show like VH-1's "The T.O. Show," which revels in the excesses of its flamboyant star, wide receiver Terrell Owens. The tone of Vick's show, say producers, will be serious and somber as it focuses on his personal struggles since his release, including the strains on his relationships with his fiancée, Kijafa Frink, and his children. It will also revisit the federal prison in Leavenworth, Kan., where Vick spent 1 1/2 years behind bars and the Virginia property where he ran and financed a dogfighting ring.

BET's new entertainment chief, Loretha Jones, says the Vick project fits squarely into the network's new branding strategy of family values, cultural uplift and community pride. When she learned several months ago that Vick was being released, Jones was immediately interested in developing a series around him.
I'll admit, I'm sorta on the ledge about this.

On one hand, it’s NOT a reality show, it's posed' to be more like a documentary. I suspect the focus will be Vick getting his life back together post-prison, with a liberal sprinkling of lots of good PR stuff like bathing feral cats, walking old ladies across the street, and court-mandated talks to underprivileged chill'rens.

On the flipside: This is BET.

Nuff’ said.

Question: Is the "reality show as image redemption vehicle" getting a bit played? Did you expect Vick to have a bigger impact for the Eagles?

Michael Vick to star in docu-series [LA Times]

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