30 Days (with Morgan Spurlock)

Morgan Spurlock, "The Guy From Super Size Me, That Movie About Eating McDonald's For 30 Days," got himself a series on FX about doing other interesting things for 30 days. It runs on Wednesday nights, and this week's episode will be the season finale. (The "season" only contains 6 episodes.)

In the first episode, "Minimum Wage", Morgan and Alex (his girlfriend from Super Size Me) spent a month living only on minimum wage in Columbus, Ohio. I had a slight bias since I'm from Columbus, but I greatly enjoyed this episode. They showed that the minimum wage isn't reasonably livable, even in a two-income household without children. (They also showed that the Columbus' COTA bus system is terrible, which my friends and I discovered last New Year's Eve.)

Unfortunately, the remaining episodes featured other people that weren't very interesting. For whatever reason, Morgan Spurlock only starred in the first episode. He only provides commentary in the others.

The second episode, "Anti-Aging", featured a guy in his thirties (with an incredibly annoying wife) attempting to regain his energy and fitness from his younger years by taking growth hormones and steroids. He did lose weight, but he went from absolutely no exercise to a regular, professionally-monitored exercise routine. After the hormones gave him trouble, he stopped using them and gave up hope. Wouldn't it be easier to only exercise?

In "Muslims And America", a devoted Christian from West Virginia went to live in a strong Muslim community in Michigan and attempted to live a Muslim lifestyle. But he was stubborn and obnoxious - he asked the same questions repeatedly, and wouldn't listen to the answers he was repeatedly given. He wasn't trying to understand anything, and he was frustrating to watch.

"Straight Man In A Gay World" featured a homophobic guy living with a gay man in San Francisco. He was also stubborn and didn't really attempt to understand the culture around him.

The most recent episode, "Off The Grid", stuck two New Yorkers into a self-sustained environmentally-friendly community without any connection to external power, trash, or plumbing systems. This was the best episode since "Minimum Wage", with entertaining characters that didn't frustrate the viewer, and an interesting premise.

The previews for the finale, "Binge-Drinking Mom", look disappointing. I don't think it will be very interesting or entertaining. We'll see on Wednesday night.

Rated 3/5


Morgan Spurlock's featured episode, "Minimum Wage", was excellent. But with the exception of "Off The Grid", the other episodes have less-interesting premises with frustrating characters. I predict that it won't be picked up for a second season, and I won't be very disappointed if it isn't. Morgan Spurlock should do what he does best: full-length movies featuring himself doing something interesting.