"Man v. Food Nation" continues the "Man v. Food" legacy with a new branding, just in time for the fourth season.
Perhaps in a last-ditch attempt to find something that might make the show appear refined, the word "nation" was added to give an extra flair to the title.
It is a show that individuals of all ages may be attracted to, especially if they have a penchant toward food-based travelogues.
Each episode provides a vignette detailing a unique aspect of culinary history or famous restaurants, climaxed by a challenge participated in by the host or an individual he cheers on.
Brainstorming sessions are shown where techniques for grotesquely wolfing down as much food as gluttonously possible are outlined.
In the first episode of the season, a challenge is issued for a college student to attempt to break a record by eating 10 grilled cheese sandwiches with a combined weight of 6 pounds. He is given an hour to perform this daunting task.
Strategies outlining how best to eat multiple grease-laden sandwiches in one fail swoop are thoroughly outlined. The subliminal messaging conveyed to susceptible young minds is worthy of question.
The show is largely family friendly, but it was dismaying to hear the language used by various participants. There were multiple vain references to deity, in addition to other mild swearing. Some of the more graphic language was bleeped out.
Those concerned about the language children are exposed to will probably want to review it on their own first. There are some very mild sexual innuendos scattered throughout random shows. They seemed to be very low key and would certainly fly over the head of a younger audience.
Typical of a reality TV show, there was plenty of immodesty that was present in various scenes including a beach scene that was briefly panned over in one episode.
Core to a show analyzing food culture was alcohol consumption. This seemed fairly overt but not overhanded. Aside from some mild language, another concern is the glamorization of overeating.
The participants seem largely oblivious to terms such as heart disease, saturated fat, cholesterol and calories.
While the show may detail someone being momentarily sick after scarfing down massive amounts of food, there is no mention of the long-term consequences that arise from such actions.
The season premiere of "Man vs. Food Nation" debut June 1 at 7 p.m. on the Travel Channel with a TV-PG rating.
Joseph Irvine is a self-employed computer engineer in Madison, Ala. A graduate of Utah State University, he hopes to pursue a degree in law at BYU in the near future.