It used to be called The Learning Channel and featured educational fare. But now it’s just called TLC and it broadcasts a raft of shows primarily about giant families or little people but so far, thankfully, not both.
TLC’s current ratings leader is the show "Jon & Kate Plus Eight", an inside look at a couple raising twins and a set of sextuplets. While the show has had a solid audience for much of its run, it now outdraws many major network shows thanks to the recent breakdown of Jon and Kate’s marriage.
The latest news from last Monday’s episode is the long-anticipated divorce of the show’s stars. With promo teasers like "Jon and Kate Gosselin have an announcement", "A family in turmoil" and "A relationship at a crossroads", it was expected that more than ten million viewers would tune in to gawk at the latest development in this ongoing train wreck.
But what if the hype had been just that....hype? What if the expected announcement was not the end of the Gosselins’ fishbowl marriage? What if America’s new favorite couple had something else to announce? Something like:
* "The show’s writers (yes, we have writers) think it would be a great idea to have a whole special big family week on TLC," said Kate Gosselin. "Where we join forces with those crazy folks on ‘18 Kids and Counting’." "Yes, I’m really looking forward to it," said Jon. "What with our sardonic sniping at one another and their wacky religious nuttiness, I think the possibilities for fun times, or maybe even religious end times, are exciting."
* "We’d like to announce that we’re planning to expand our TV family next season," said Kate Gosselin. "Given all the troubles that Nadia Suleman, the Octomom, is having with her new octuplets, we thought we’d like to help out and adopt them, at least for the next season or two." "That’s right," said Jon Gosselin. "We figure we can only squeeze so many ratings points out of our marriage troubles and there’ll soon come a time when we need a new twist to keep our viewers interested. And we really like the title of the revamped show: ‘Jon & Kate Plus Eight Plus Eight’."
* "We feel we’ve done a lot for America by opening up our home to viewers from coast to coast," said Kate Gosselin. "But we’re finding that it’s just not as satisfying as it used to be." "I agree," said Jon. "And that’s why we’re planning to move the show to Israel next season. We figure that by showing everyone in the Middle East how the ten of us manage to get along we can bring some much needed peace and understanding to the region. But don’t look for us to build a settlement in the West Bank. Somehow I don’t think that would be very helpful."
* "Television history shows that one surefire way to exploit the success of a show," said Jon Gosselin. "Is to have a spinoff." "I couldn’t agree more," said Kate Gosselin. "And that’s why we’re looking at expanding the marriage breakup theme and debuting two new shows: ‘Jon Plus Four’ and ‘Kate Plus Four’. Or maybe we’ll piggyback on one of TLC’s other popular series and start our own birth control show called ‘What Not To Bear’."