Battleground Earth: Ludacris vs. Tommy Lee TV Poster Image

Battleground Earth: Ludacris vs. Tommy Lee

Green reality show is more talk than eco-action.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The whole show is designed to tout the concept of living an eco-conscious lifestyle. The two stars often talk about the importance of living green, as do the many celebrities who make guest appearances. There's plenty of trash-talking and some underhanded dealings as the teams try to jockey for position. It sometimes seems like the show's green messages are secondary to the contest, and while some participants claim to live a eco-friendly lifestyle, others openly admit that they pay little heed to their impact on the environment (though being involved with the program certainly has made them think about it, which perhaps is the goal).

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

No sex or nudity, but there's a fair amount of flirting between Tommy Lee and one of his team members, Nina.

Language

Some words are bleeped.

Consumerism

This show trades on Lee and Ludacris' star power and frequently promotes their musical careers. Plenty of other celebrities make guest appearances, and the participants often visit significant attractions and events, like the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, as well as local establishments, which appear on screen and are usually referred to by name. The competitions involve a variety of green projects, many of which require products -- and even advice -- from companies that offer such services and are promoted by name.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

The teams often hold strategy sessions and post-challenge celebrations at bars and nightclubs, so there's plenty of drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is a fairly standard reality program done up in green wrapping. Theoretically, the challenges are designed to promote eco-friendly habits -- or at least promote the idea of making changes that will benefit the environment -- but they sometimes seem to be mostly for show, with little evidence that any of the participants actually make adjustments to how they live. The teams often convene for strategy sessions and post-event celebrations at bars and nightclubs, so expect a fair amount of drinking. There's also some bleeped swearing and a bit of flirtatious behavior.

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What's the story?

Rock stars Tommy Lee and Ludacris sure can talk the talk, and in BATTLEGROUND EARTH: LUDACRIS VS. TOMMY LEE, they try to show whether they can also walk the (green) walk. This reality show follows the two musicians and their respective teammates as they travel the country competing in eco-themed contests, including building a solar-powered sign, collecting grease to make biodiesel, gathering recyclables, and other Earth-friendly activities.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

Battleground Earth follows a tried-and-true format, pitting the two teams against each other in a series of wacky events. The twist here is the show's focus on the environment. The contests all have some connection to the green movement, and the participants frequently talk about the importance of recognizing mankind's negative impact on the planet. The two musicians are frequently joined by celebrity guest stars, who echo this sentiment.

But a lot of the participants' talk about living a green lifestyle seems to be just that: talk. While they spend a lot of time advocating a green lifestyle, the series doesn't really show them making any obvious changes to their own lifestyles. And while the competitions all have a green theme, it's not clear that racing to sell as much fried food as possible so the used oil can be used to produce biodiesel will really do much to save the planet. And when one team climbs into a private plane at the end of an episode, it seems like the group is only paying lip service to their message of change.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the "green" movement. Do you life an eco-friendly lifestyle? Do you think watching this show could prompt any changes in viewers' habits? Does enlisting celebrities make eco-friendly habits more appealing? Why or why not? Do you think the celebs in this series are sincere in their efforts to change their own habits -- and the world -- or are they just along for a fun ride? If the latter, why would they want to be on this show?

TV details

Premiere date:August 3, 2008
Cast:Ludacris, Tommy Lee
Network:Planet Green
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-14

This review of Battleground Earth: Ludacris vs. Tommy Lee was written by

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