What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this "celebreality" series about former heavyweight champ George Foreman and his family seems to exist solely to give Foreman a way to remind viewers of his many achievements. He often comes across as egotistical, steering conversations toward his prowess in boxing and business and monopolizing camera time so he can speak his mind. There's not much iffy content here beyond the over-dramatized family conflict typical of most reality shows -- but, likewise, there's little that's exciting and certainly nothing to really engage kids.
What's the story?
FAMILY FOREMAN takes viewers into the spacious Texas home of two-time heavyweight champion George Foreman and his family. Even though he once ruled the boxing ring, Foreman's wife, Joan, and his six kids who still live at home (four others have left the nest) give him a run for his money on a daily basis, so there's never a shortage of drama in the Foreman house. The series follows the ins and outs of Foreman's life as he tries to balance fatherhood with his multiple business endeavors.
Is it any good?
Foreman's list of achievements includes an Olympic medal, a handful of books, a lucrative endorsement career, a youth center he sponsors in his Texas town, and even his own church, over which he presides as an ordained minister. With such established success, you have to wonder why he thought it was necessary to jump on the reality bandwagon. Not only is there no real need for this series, but there's precious little to love about it. While Foreman claims that his family is his greatest source of pride, conversations often invite mention of his own professional success, and he frequently comes across as egotistical. (He even named all five of his sons George, and calls them by nicknames like "Red" and "Big Wheel" to avoid confusion.) He also keeps the focus on himself by monopolizing the onscreen confessionals, which allow him to expound on how misunderstood he is by his family members.
Reality TV fans are also likely to be turned off by how much the show smacks of scripted dialogue. Most conversations feel so awkward that it's impossible to believe they're natural and undirected, and even typical family bickering seems like a performance. The only bright spots are scenes of Foreman interacting with the public, especially those in which he coaches the kids at his youth center and inspires them to lead responsible lives free of drugs and alcohol.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about how the Foreman family is affected by George Sr.'s success. What aspects of their life are noticeably different from yours? Do you think they see George's fame as a positive thing? Do we hold celebrities and their families to a different standard than everyone else? If so, is that fair? How do you think it feels to be in the spotlight most of your life? Families can also discuss why society values athletic ability so highly. Why don't we give the same amount of respect to success in fields like medicine, literature, and education?