Just when we thought reality TV couldn't sink any lower, Fox has officially scraped the bottom of the cringeworthy barrel by ordering a JD Roth-produced pilot called Bad Dads. The series, originally titled Deadbeat Dads until Mike Darnell christened it with its new name, depicts divorced fathers who've refused to pay child support, ambushing them at their ritzy country clubs on camera and forcing them to pay up. Playing the Chris Hansen role is some guy from a child-protection agency, who will go so far as to "make their lives miserable - foreclose on their house...repossess their car...all for a noble cause"! Roth, the reality wunderkind behind The Biggest Loser and Beauty And The Geek, claims the series aims to provide "justice for women." Which sounds lovely, but how exactly will pointing out just how mean and "bad" men are week after week warm our hearts?
There are certainly more than enough shows on the air right now depicting women as gold-diggers (The Bachelor), alcoholic sluts (Rock Of Love), and vapid brats (The Hills). But is counteracting the derogatory portrayal of fame-hungry women by featuring dozens of selfish, uncaring absentee fathers really the logical next step? As THR puts it, the series will "depict the sacrifice and heartache" of wounded women. We never thought we'd say this, but we're kinda missing the era of Mary Tyler Moore and Murphy Brown at this point.