PEOPLE's TV Critic: My Apology to Honey Boo Boo

07/16/2013 at 02:00 PM EDT

Here Comes Honey Boo Boo: PEOPLE's TV Critic on the New Season
Alana "Honey Boo Boo" Thompson
Gene Young/Splash News Online
Dear Honey Boo Boo Child:

When Here Comes Honey Boo Boo debuted on TLC last summer, I thought the sky was falling and that civilization was ending. The show seemed to expose viewers to a new low in what passes for American life on TV – I never got over that local swimming hole with the warning sign about flesh-eating bacteria – and at the same time I thought it exploited you, your Mama June and your siblings.

I thought it was especially condescending, and insulting, for the show's producers to supply subtitles translating your dialogue, even though your family's Southern accents are admittedly jowl-shakingly thick.

But here we are a year later, with season 2 starting Wednesday, and I redneckognize (as you'd say) that you meant and did no harm. All the Boo-hating was a big to-boo about nothing. For instance ...

Is your show responsible for the fact that 90 percent of all TV is now about serial killers?

Is it your fault that a great sitcom like the now-dead Happy Endings enjoyed a viewership of 6.5 households?

Was it your idea to kill off Cousin Matthew with such a stupidly arbitrary car crash on hoighty-toity Downton Abbey?

Are you accountable for NSA spying? IRS profiling?


You are just a little girl doing your best to be a beauty queen, TV star and dutiful daughter to the surprisingly levelheaded June.

And so I welcome the new season, even though the "Watch 'n' Sniff" premiere emphasizes flatulence. More than usual.

But it also allows us to share in many innocent pleasures – such as the Dukes of Hazzard-themed birthday for papa Sugar Bear. How you and the girls shriek when the Daisy Duke piñata explodes in a shower of candy!

And where I once might have been disgusted that a family would make pork and beans from a roadkill pig, as you do in the season premiere, this is actually "green." Or so I believe.

May heaven bless you, Boo Boo. Although I can still give you only 2.5 stars.

Your Reaction

Follow Us

On Newsstands Now

Bindi Irwin: Remembering My Dad
  • Bindi Irwin: Remembering My Dad
  • Adam Levine's Wedding Details!
  • James Garner: 1928-2014

Pick up your copy on newsstands

Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine

blog comments powered by Disqus

From Our Partners

Watch It

What to Watch Today

From Our Partners