Feel Good TV: Secret Millionaire
Every once in a while, heartwarming, tear-jerking stories are presented to us on the addictive apparatus known as the television. This past Sunday, ABC struck ratings gold with its new show, Secret Millionaire. The premise of this show is simple: Real, self-made (misnomer, perhaps) millionaires go undercover and dwell in some of the most impoverished conditions around.
They take stock of the individuals or groups who are attempting to change their situations for the better, and at the end of the show, they reveal their true identities and present very large reward checks to those who are doing the most with the least.
Of course, you’re probably thinking this premise sounds very close to that of Undercover Boss. You’re right. It’s reality TV, after all. Most reality shows are highly derivative.
Anyway, in a society of astronomical compensation for upper-level management compared to other employees, it is nice to see some of the financial upper crust giving back. In order to appear on the show, the millionaires have to give gifts of at least $100,000. They can either give it all to one person or split it amongst several individuals who are making a difference.
Interestingly enough, this show had a very brief run on Fox several years ago, but was quickly canned. Now it’s back on ABC, and over 12 million households tuned in for the premiere. In the first episode, millionaire Dani Johnson went to Knoxville, TN to discover an area of poverty and drugs.
While $100,000 may be pennies to many of the millionaires on the show, it certainly beats the blind eye and deaf ear so many usually turn to those in need.
You can find the entire season 1 premiere on ABC.com. Tune in to ABC on Sundays at 8 pm EST for upcoming episodes.