Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Zimmern's Bizarre World

Well, I think this post is relevant to my blog because after all, I think it qualifies as documentary for sure.

I watched the teaser episode of Bizarre World last night (Andrew Zimmern's spin-off from Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel). I'm very excited to watch it, especially after hearing him describe how he was asked to participate in a remote African tribe's ceremony during which the elderly men had snot coming out their noses and were foaming at the mouth (makes me think of Jean Rouch's Le Maitre Fous although I'm sure the analysis and current time period make for a completely different context). Anyway, he then describes how the shaman put his hand on Zimmern's heart, and he felt himself go outside of his body and look at himself. He was thumbing through the pages of his life...and I think we can be quite assured that Mr. Dapper Zimmern does not partake in drug rituals. This is thus utterly amazing.

Then, I saw this article in the NY Times today: "Going Where the Fringe Isn't Extreme"
They are criticizing his Cuba episode for not commenting enough on the political situation and why Cuba is the way it is. In Zimmern's defense, the show is sugar-coated, but it's on network TV! I'm sure maybe he could have commented more on the turmoil, etc. etc., but I still think the show holds it's own merit just for exploring these places. There's also a thing called editing where I'm sure a lot of what gets said gets left out for the sake of attracting viewers and influencing them into accepting the other cultures rather than criticizing them.

I'll get off my soap box now, but I felt compelled to come to his defense. I haven't seen a full episode yet, so we'll see, but I'm also excited to see an African tribe mimicking Zimmern and his camera crew with sticks for boom poles.


  1. He's certainly true to the name of the show-bizarre! Thanks to him for experiencing the strange side of the world, so I don't have to.

  2. I was curious about his new show because I always enjoy watching Bizarre Foods. Thanks for pointing out the article! :)

    P.S. I think your documentary looks really cool. I'm definitely interested in seeing it!

  3. Thanks, Leanne! We'll be selling copies of the documentary soon on our website for $10.00 (I think) www.betterbonesandgardensfilm.com