Saturday, July 28, 2012

The Show Story

As an American, you occasionally flip the channels around, and maybe once in a while.....you come to this oddball German TV show....Traumschiff....on channel 2 (ZDF).

The best description of Traumschiff....is that you've got the American series "Love Boat" in the background, and this German vessel sails off to exotic four-star ports around the globe.  There are traditionally five different topics or themes going on with each 90-minute show (no commercials).

The Captain hardly ever gets into trouble, but he kindly offers advice and usually sets people straight on a better course in life.  The passengers all have soap opera-like lives and there's some friction....an occasional crime....and always a mystery in the midst of the trip.

The thing about Traumschiff....it's filmed on the German-flagged MS Deutschland....not in a studio....up until the last couple of months.  The owners of the vessel finally realized that they could reflag the boat.....lower costs....pay a lower pay scale.....and continue to fake people with it being a four-star cruise boat, while sliding down a notch to 3.5 stars (my general impression).

For some reason.....this whole flag switch-over....got out in the public, and for a couple of weeks, it's been somewhere in the first five pages of the news at least once or twice a week.  If you had to pick a way to get negative news.....the owners had picked the best way.

Will this hurt the TV show?  Well....being on channel 2 means that you really don't care about ratings that much.  The other side of this show is that almost no one under that age of forty watches it.  My general bet would be eighty percent of the audience is over the age of fifty-five.  And the vast number of folks would never even sign up for a cruise.....but they dream of such an experience.

So if you hear some talk about the show or this flagging episode....it really isn't that big of a deal....except for a bunch of older folks who are desperate for something to complain about.

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