30 Days: Season 1

DVD Reviews | Jul 24th, 2006

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Starring Morgan Spurlock
Written By:
Directed By:
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Buy on Amazon.com link

Do you ever wonder what it would be like if you lived in someone else’s shoes? Well now you don’t have to wonder since Academy Award nominated writer, director of Super Size Me, Morgan Spurlock, has created a show just like that. This is the first time I’m seeing this series and I was immediately hooked!

The first episode of 30 Days is with the host/creator/whatever you want to call him, spending 30 Days living on minimum wage. After going to the Oscars and all that, his fiance and he weren’t exactly poor. If Spurlock is going to put people through torturous things for 30 days, he might as well start it off right by doing the same thing. They go to the bank and freeze their assets, and travel to the shit hole known as Columbus, Ohio. I’d want to murder someone if I’d lived in that city. But anyway, they manage to find a crappy apartment filled with cockroaches and ants. And even better, it’s right near a crack house. As the days go by, things go downhill for the couple. They have to get crappy jobs; they don’t have a car so they have to take a bus, and Morgan gets hurt and has to go to the hospital. Meanwhile they have no money to do all this but somehow they just scrap by. Other episodes follow normal joe schmos as they try new things & different lifestyles like trying anti-aging methods, a Christian has to live with a Muslim family and a homophobe has to move in with a homosexual. All of this makes for very interested television!

I never saw Super Size Me (even though I want to) but I didn’t know what to expect from this series. I didn’t know how Spurlock did things or how he came off but I really like the guy. He’s not biased in anyway and shows things from both sides. He’s especially ten times more likable than Michael Moore is. I thought the series was a great & intelligent way of showing different sides to things. The show can be funny, it can be knowledgeable, and it can be dramatic. So it has a lot of different things for people to enjoy. The filming has a documentary feel to it, more than a reality TV show. I wouldn’t even consider this a reality show. It’s filmed like a documentary and narrated by Morgan Spurlock, but Morgan pops in from time to time to see how the normal people are doing. I like that Morgan throws himself into the gauntlet and does stuff for the show as well. By doing that, it shows that he’s not playing around and if he can do something, so can someone else. I don’t think I could do some of these situations like living on minimum wage. I guess if I really had to do I would have no choice, but for a TV show, I’d rather keep my sanity.

I thought the Christian living with a Muslim family was a really great episode. The guy seemed close minded at first but slowly starts to learn about the religion & culture. Towards the end, he ends up having to defend himself and the Islamic faith to people. I’m not sure how I would be in his shoes since I don’t like any religion and think it’s a bunch of horse crap. But too each his own and the point of this show is learn about other cultures and stuff like that. I thought the anti-aging one was a good episode, but it was a bit dramatic for my taste. I was interested to see how he was doing with all those steroids and pills in his body. I knew something was going to end up bad since he was taking so much. The Off The Grind episode was interesting as well because it was funny watching people from the city living in a environmentally safe village. I don’t think the people learned anything and will go back to their old ways. Living in that sort of environment is just a little bit extreme and I can’t see myself living there either. I don’t know if I would hunt rabbits outside my hut but I’d probably turn vegetarian. But then again I can’t pass up a nice juicy cheeseburger. MMM cow.

For bonus material, there’s some audio commentary on selected episodes but since this was the first time I was watching these episodes; I wanted to enjoy them with no talking over it. There’s also exclusive video diaries with all the people for the shows. Just see them uncensored and expressing how they feel even more. I don’t get why they bleep out the word ‘fuck’ but let it fly in the extras. Kind of stupid if you ask me but that’s censorship for ya.

Overall, this show reminds me of other great TV series like The Awful Truth and Penn & Teller Bullshit. There are funny moments in the shows, but at the same time you learn things and comes across very intelligently. The only downfall I think with this DVD is i’m not sure how well these episodes will hold up with repeat viewings. This isn’t the type of show I’d like to watch over and over again. But i’m sure others will buy this DVD and watch the episodes over and over again. I can’t wait for the second season to start, which is July 25th on FX. I’d recommend everyone to check out this DVD and the second season!

Audio Commentary on Selected Episodes
Exclusive “Diary Cam” for Every Episode

ENGLISH: Dolby Digital Stereo CC

Standard 1.33:1 Color

English, Spanish

Favorite Scenes: Minimum Wage, Muslims and America, Straight Man in a Gay World, Off The Grid
Rating: NR
Running Time: 270 minutes
Extras Rating:
Overall Rating: