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Jul 18, 2013 02:10 PM

The Shed, new programming on Food Network

Sneak peek August 4th. Both sit-com & BBQ food show. Interesting..

FN writes:
Meet the First Family of Mississippi Barbecue, the Orrisons. Their wildly popular barbecue joint's earned them fame, fortune, devoted fans and a lot of big toys. But no matter how big their business grows, the boisterous, fun-loving clan insists on running the business as a family. Add in all the colorful employees and regulars and it's obvious: This down-home joint is a real-life sitcom.

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  1. Sounds like a food version of Pawn Stars. I sure wish the network were about, OH, I dunno... food?

    45 Replies
    1. re: mcf

      Funny, we were wondering the same thing. We'll see..

      1. re: mcf

        Just like this site can't be only about "food" the same is true for FN.

        I'm not even sure why there's a presumption that it should be.

        1. re: ipsedixit

          I'm not clear what the presumptions are let alone why there are any but I do wonder what the folks charged with creating programming are thinking when comment boxes are filled to capacity with suggestions and straight forward requests for the kind of programming they/viewers want.

          The synop. on The Shed as well as the preview running on FN leaves me with the impression that a family known for Q will be acting out their "real life" with a few Q recipes thrown in.

          1. re: HillJ

            What's wrong with having a food-related show?

            In the same vein, Chowhound has "Not About Food" and this discussion category dedicated to "Food Media and News".

            1. re: ipsedixit

              I don't recall stating there was anything wrong with The Shed. Not in my OP or in my comments. And, since the show has not aired yet, my "We'll see"...comment to mcf still stands.

              I do also stand by my question about FN programming and the choices. How do they come by those food show ideas?

              But, I have no reply for you in your attempt to compare the Food Network debuting a new show in August with two topical boards on Chowhound. I fail to see a comparison or why you even brought Chowhound's board offerings into a thread about a new FN show.

              Care to enlighten an old dog?

              1. re: HillJ

                Well, first of all I was replying to mcf and the comment of why the programming couldn't be "about OH, I dunno... food?"

                My point is that there's no reason a channel like FN (in the same way Chow diversifies) to focus only myopically on "food".

                1. re: ipsedixit

                  Ah. Well I will step aside and give mcf room to respond.


          2. re: ipsedixit

            Sure, if they had any worthwhile food/cooking shows there'd be room for more crap. But they don't and I find that I very rarely tune into anything on FN any more.

            1. re: mcf

              That's simply a matter of personal opinion, and for what it's worth FN regularly garners multiple daytime Emmy nominations (something like 10 for 2013), and Guy Fieri was just nominated for a primetime Emmy.

              But even beyond that, what's wrong with diversification? Restaurants like McDonalds do it, Chow does it, auto makers do it, etc.

              Doing just one thing leaves you prone to becoming a niche player, and eventually irrelevant.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                If I may ips, there is nothing wrong with diversification. Bring it on!

                However, nominations aside, the FN viewers I've read are quoted as asking for more programming.

                However, the # of programs that have come & gone on FN in say the last five years and prior to the launch of the Cooking Channel is also lengthy. Either one season try outs or not renewed and FN's comment boxes are filled with requests for something new and something more; relevant to cooking programs, not reality tv with a food slant.

                1. re: HillJ

                  You are mistaking comments left by viewers for marketing research.

                  1. re: wyogal

                    hi wyogal.
                    No, I'm actually tired of programming folks that ignore their viewer comments.

                    1. re: HillJ

                      " How do they come by those food show ideas? "

                      1. re: wyogal

                        wyogal, Marketing 101 was brand loyalty in my day. Advertisers lived by it. So, my own question remains about how programming on FN is decided today. FN ruled the modern food share for a good long while and has become something new. It tried too many waters in an effort to expand horizons.

                        I'll tune in to The Shed to see what the energy is about.

                        1. re: HillJ

                          Have you asked FN how they conduct their market research? Are you thinking you will actually get an answer to that question here?

                          1. re: wyogal

                            Have I wasted your time, wyogal. If so, no need to continue. Like I said, I'll give The Shed a go and see if it offers cooking tips on Q. If it's drama of the reality tv variety-good luck FN.

                            1. re: HillJ

                              Just responding to your questions, that's all. No big deal.

                              1. re: wyogal

                                I actually didn't consider market research, you did. And you're right, no big deal.

                                My own curiosity revolves around reader/viewer comments. FN's own website is designed to accept thousands of viewer comments a day-who reads them? What value do they serve? Just a lot of healthy venting?..just like Chowhound, huh. Ah! Light bulb moment.. maybe that's the CH to FN comparison, ips.

                                Admittedly, reality tv as food tv leaves me flat.

                                1. re: HillJ

                                  Comments increase view count which increases ad revenue. Just like any other website.

                                  1. re: youareabunny

                                    Hi yourab,
                                    I'm not disputing "some" of the numbers. I'm asking what happens to the contributions made in comment form. Does anyone read them at FN or make programming choices based on their audience input?

                                    Just like any other business, not just a website, I wonder how many making the business decisions care about what their audience is asking for.

                                    1. re: HillJ

                                      My guess is no. I'd think they'd have more representative samples or panels to help them come up with what to air.

                                      Allowing comments is a very easy way to get view counts up. Arguments further boost that. You think they host thousands of recipes to help us out? In the end it's all ad revenue, just like tv shows and commercials.

                                      1. re: youareabunny

                                        My guess is once they did and now they don't. And that is a real shame of business growth. In the beginning you know you need viewers/participants of your product-from all sides, and once you rise to some comfortable level of success-you forget you still need viewers/participants to keep your product going strong.

                                        1. re: HillJ

                                          It is a lot of comments to sift through I suppose. Although they did take the time to remove the Kwanzaa cake from their website due, in part, to the comments ;)

                                          Some of my favorite bloggers have changed their layouts to get more clicks. When I used to be able to scroll 5 posts in one page, now each post has 3 lines and then a button that says "click to read more." I understand they need/want those views but I find myself clicking not because I truly want to read but because I need to find out whether or not it's worth reading. Not to mention the fact that each post is separated by an ad, bah.

                                          There's got to be more of a balance between love of the art and profit.

                                          Supposedly the new models for advertisements are flat rate- $500-50,000 for ad placement for whatever length of time. I think this had more to do with payment simplicity than fraudulent view counts (although that's generally an issue for small sites).

                                          1. re: youareabunny

                                            They may have removed the recipe for the Kwanzaa Kake but there is still a rather spectacular VIDEO of Aunt Sandy kreating the kake.


                                            They did not remove the Star of David kake recipe with the 8 pointed Star of David. It and its cultural insensitivity got a lot of comment, too.


                                          2. re: HillJ

                                            And there is still more programming to come since the announcement in April.
                                            Good deal of recycled ideas and same old, same old.

                                            I just read that the winner of FN's Giving You the Business has gotten himself an attorney displeased by his actual prize...

                                            Okay, I'm too OT on my own OP now ;)

                                          3. re: youareabunny

                                            They sure pay attention to comments at Bravo and specifically, Top Chef.

                                              1. re: linus

                                                linus, as one small written example of how the folks @ Bravo listen to their viewers, I recall reading this article:


                                                Bravo viewer suggestions & the "research" for programming decisions does include social media...and comment boxes can be one example of social media tools at work. The article highlights a few ways viewers have impact @ Bravo.

                                                1. re: linus

                                                  Because it's routinely commented on in blogs on by Tom Colicchio and others. And by Andy Cohen, the NBC exec in charge of Bravo.

                                                  1. re: mcf

                                                    That's very interesting, mcf. I didn't know that and I'll be heading over to the site to do some reading. Thanks.

                                                    1. re: HillJ

                                                      Remember the TC year with the shooting, ski lift, bicycle and other stupidity? Tom C wrote in his blog that he heard us loud and clear (and bloggers often respond to the tenor of message board contents on Bravo shows) about that and it would not happen again.

                                                      Andy Cohen frequently mentions the viewer comments and reactions on his show, too.

                                                      1. re: mcf

                                                        I just located Tom's blog and I'll read thru over the weekend while I'm waiting for my crew to arrive, thank you mcf.

                                                        Just on quick glance, Tom's blog and the comments posted appear to reflect the NYT's article about Bravo's perspective on viewer comments. This type of viewer inclusion is what I was looking @ FN and couldn't find any examples.

                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                          i always take some of these comments with a grain of salt. i bet there's a difference between how much they say they pay attention to viewer comments, etc., and how much they actually do.
                                                          but of course, i have no way of knowing.

                                                        2. re: mcf

                                                          I am on an email list serv for one of those market research companies that very clearly (based on the shows they ask about) services Bravo. Within the past couple months I received a survey about Top Chef, and it specifically asked about whether my enjoyment of the show was increased or decreased based on the inclusion of physical activities in the challenges. The question even included an "e.g." that listing shooting and chiseling things out of ice.

                                                          ... I was not shy in sharing my opinion in that comment box.

                                                          1. re: charmedgirl

                                                            Tom C. said they got the message LOUD AND CLEAR on his blog. So glad. Because they returned to cooking. I think Last Chance Kitchen is a great addition, unlike the stupid gimmicks they used that terrible, awful season.

                                                            Very clear point was made that viewer input led to a change back to cooking, not ice picks and shooting challenges.

                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                              Well, the message might not have been so loud and clear, since they have continued to ask the question in their market research, as recently as the past month or so. Regardless, I was happy to add to the chorus to drive the point home, if it was needed.

                                                              1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                I think loud and clear is exactly what Tom Colicchio may've said, with a promise that it wouldn't happen again.

                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                  Yes, mcf, you are completely right, and I am mistaken. Thank you for enlightening me.

                                                                  1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                    That was snotty enough. :-)

                                                                    My point was that I think those are literally the words he used. And they didn't do a repeat. And that was before the survey you mention.

                                                                    But you can be right all you want, don't make me no nevermind.

                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                      Me neither, which is why I said you were right. :-)

                                                              2. re: mcf

                                                                apparently, the new season of top chef masters opens with the contestants sky diving into their first challenge.
                                                                those that opt out are assessed a penalty.

                                              2. re: youareabunny

                                                Comments increase view count which increases ad revenue. Just like any other website.

                                                I dunno, that might be too glib.

                                                Comments, like many here, may mean that it is part of the Internet consciousness, but that by itself does not translate into eyeballs, and more importantly commentators on online websites are not necessarily the same people who have purchasing power. And it is the people with purchasing power that translate to ad revenue.

                                                So maybe FN has done their due diligence and figured out that there is little correlation between online commentators of their shows and viewers of their shows who actually have purchasing power -- the so-called "silent majority with dispensable income"

                                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                                  Okay, so follow the money..stop off at FN's merch. shopping area and head over to brand loyalty to a particular FN show or chef and the merchandise they sell through the FN website. Today, purchasing power includes the activity on the Net & the ad venue on a website is a considerable part of the equation. The books, magazine, merch. social media and television shows (just to name a few) support every endeavor to keep the business going. What silent majority?

                                                  And don't forget all the LIC going on ta boot:

                            2. re: ipsedixit

                              Matters of personal opinion are a great deal of what's posted here. That was mine. No demand from me that you adopt it.

                              No need to respond to your arguments about stuff I've never said.

                      2. Wasn't/Isn't there on Oprah's network a show about the family behind SWEETIE PIE'S in St Louis. Different type resto but sounds like the same idea.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: rich in stl

                          Not sure yet, rich-at least until The Shed airs. But I've caught a few episodes of Sweetie Pie and your analogy sounds very plausible. As SP's show went along it became more about the family drama-rama then recipes/food.

                        2. Don't have anything against this type of programs, however, I don't think they are cooking shows. They are more like comedy programs, Beverly Hillibillies, I love Lucy, etc. These are not cooking shows, more just silly everyday nonesene living in famiies

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: dolly52

                            dolly52, the Net has been covering the FN debut all week!


                            The Orrisons Q joint

                          2. It sounds like it is following in the footsteps of the duck people (don't remember the name) that is a wildly popular reality show.

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: karenfinan

                              I think that is what I meant, these are more reality shows than actual cooking shows. What the heck, seems that is what people like and I am in the minority. I kinda liked Mexican Made Easy, but am getting tired of Maricela's cleavage.

                              I wish we did have more shows like, Julia Child, ATK, etc.

                              1. re: dolly52

                                I don't think being in the minority is the entire story. I think being able to package inexpensive programming plays a part.

                                1. re: dolly52

                                  I never get tired of Marcella's cleavage.

                                2. re: karenfinan

                                  Duck Dynasty. And they are exactly who I thought of when I saw the commercials.

                                  1. re: ennuisans

                                    From what I'm reading, the Orrisons have substantial credentials in the Q business. If that translates to food tv remains the question until next month when the show airs.

                                3. I have close family who live in Ocean Springs, and have eaten at The Shed several times. It's not the best barbecue I've ever had, but it's good, and the place is fun. When Hurricane Isaac hit last year, my brother-in-law was heavily involved in organizing relief efforts in OS. He raves to this day about how generous and helpful the whole Shed team and Orrison family were. They fed thousands of people for free, and put in a lot of physical hours as well. That said, I probably won't watch the show because it's just not my type of thing. But I do wish them well.