Another Reason Not to Pay for Cable

Bad enough the Discovery channel gorped the BBC’s “Life” by replacing David Attenborough with Oprah Winfrey for fear of the creationists, but now they’ve completely destroyed their remaining shreds of credibility. Ken Layne at Wonkette explains:

All Sarah Palin ever wanted to be in her whole life was a teevee host. This is Documented Fact, and the whole “politics” thing simply grew out of her failure to get a full-time spot on the local news in Anchorage. It didn’t work out, of course, because Sarah Palin was too dumb and untalented for the local news in Anchorage.
And so she became mayor of a gravel pit behind a strip mall and next thing you know John “I will literally try fucking anything at this point” McCain went ahead and chose her as the GOP candidate for Vice President of the United States of America, in 2008. And then, that same day, the entire global financial system collapsed. It still hasn’t recovered! But she has. Sarah Palin always recovers, because she has her Eye on the Prize, and that Prize is whatever they call the basic cable version of a Daytime Emmy.
Anyway now she’s got a deal to make a Discovery Channel show about Alaska, land of helicopter hunting and tattoo parlors. Majestic! It will air once a year or whenever she decides to show up for work, before the “History’s scariest UFO drawings” program and right after the one about the mysteries of pizza — apparently, it is made of different “foods” that are “cooked” before the weird middle-aged guy with a balding ponytail and a limp delivers it to you in a cardboard box covered in logos. THE END.

Bring on the Brawndo(tm) ads! It’s what plants, and the Doughy Pantload, crave!

88 replies
  1. 1
    dmsilev says:

    I’ll watch if, and only if, she gets eaten by a bear or wolf.


  2. 2
    rob! says:

    Time to remove The Discovery Channel from my remote control’s channel pre-sets.

    Making a deal with Sarah Palin reminds me of a They Might Be Giants lyric: “You can’t shake the Devil’s hand and say you’re only kidding.”

  3. 3
    John Cole says:

    They should name it the Beverly Chillbillies.

  4. 4
    Comrade Luke says:

    I don’t know if I missed it in previous threads, but THANK GOD someone brought up the Oprah thing. It f*king pisses me off, and I had originally decided to boycott the show altogether, but I eventually caved because the video outweighs the audio.

    But honestly, hearing her voice just makes me mad.

  5. 5
    dmsilev says:

    @Comrade Luke: Fortunately, the Attenborough version will be available on DVD/Blu-ray in a few months. I can wait; Netflix is my friend.


  6. 6
    Comrade Luke says:

    @John Cole:

    The first commenter over there came up with a better name…

  7. 7
    freelancer says:

    Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman should be looking for other Networks right about now.

    I’ve seen video of Savage speaking at an Engineer’s Convention where he lamented a lot of Discovery’s programming lineup, this should make him pop a gasket.

  8. 8
    rob! says:

    The Discovery Channel should, at the very least, run her show back-to-back with one of their evolution documentaries just so some teabagger heads explode.

  9. 9
    fucen tarmal says:

    i want to see them decorating the “daughter got knocked up and their ain’t gonna be no” wedding cakes.

  10. 10
    Woodbuster says:

    I confess that I will continue to watch Discovery Channel – Dirty Jobs, fer sher – but I will never, EVER watch Palin on anything. Fuck ’em.

  11. 11
    Cat Lady says:

    The Discovery Channel jumped the shark with sharks years ago. The Quitta will be a freak show draw for the first episode, and then everyone but Rich Lowry will realize she is who we thought she is, and that will be that. Once the Wasilla Wingnut turns 50, that window will be closed. Also too.

  12. 12
    slag says:

    Seriously, John, if you’re considering not paying for cable, I would heartily endorse that decision. Years later–after you’ve traded having television for having a real life–you’ll thank yourself.

  13. 13
    Annie says:

    Are they going to let her talk? If so, hide the wine glasses and the good china….

  14. 14
    JCT says:

    She is truly the gift that keeps on giving.

    Thanks John McCain!

    And it’s a close race between Peggy Ninnington and old Snowbilly Grifter for best “wonkette” threads. Ooops, almost forgot the joy that is K-Lo!

  15. 15
    slag says:


    The Discovery Channel should, at the very least, run her show back-to-back with one of their evolution documentaries just so some teabagger heads explode.

    I’m not sure. I think her existence actually undermines the theory that humans have evolved.

  16. 16
    Comrade Kevin says:

    Leave the Brawndo alone, it has electrolytes.

  17. 17
    rob! says:


    Good point, but I think we’re about to split off into two separate species anyway: humans, and teabaggers, therefore reinforcing Darwin’s theories.

  18. 18
    beltane says:

    She will be hunting dinosaurs in her new show. It will be a creationist safari, with trophy heads of triceratops hanging on the walls of Palin’s Wasilla home, the one paid for by the taxpayers of Wasilla along with various assorted graft money.

    It will be Jurassic Park meets The Grifters.

  19. 19
    Liberty60 says:

    Maybe they can have her clan marry into the Kardashians for a Superbowl of vulgar social climbing greed

  20. 20
    ChrisZ says:

    Don’t forget about “Ooh I hear this house is sorta freaky if you shoot the show in night vision and every now and again yell “What was that!?” really loud.

  21. 21
    Will says:

    They did the same with Planet Earth, albeit Sigourney Weaver instead of Attenborough. Maybe I’m just old, but David Attenborough docs were a staple of childhood, and I love the fact that you can tell that he understands and is emotionally invested in the work. I don’t hate Weaver, but I’ve seen comparison scripts that show the audio was dumbed down for American audiences.

    The sad thing, unless things have changed, is that Life isn’t going to follow Planet Earth’s example and give people the choice of buying the Attenborough or Winfrey editions. It’s supposed to be Winfrey only in the U.S.

    Which makes it another in a long stream of examples of a U.S. company putting out a markedly inferior product to the alternative put out by the Internet pirates.

  22. 22
    Tsulagi says:

    Of course she’s shopping the “documentary” looking for a non-elitist $1.2 million per episode. As always for Bible Spice, Country Bucks First!

  23. 23
    freelancer says:


    Too many ghey marriages for the Palins’ taste.

  24. 24
    slag says:


    Good point, but I think we’re about to split off into two separate species anyway: humans, and teabaggers, therefore reinforcing Darwin’s theories.

    Hmmm…After considering many possible consequences of this theory, I’ve found no good one. There must be another way.

  25. 25
    Henry says:

    I don’t think it has to do with creationists – they just think people won’t like the british accent, i’m guessing. They did this with Planet Earth as well; the BBC version had David Attenborough (who is always amazing), but the Discovery Channel version had Sigourney Weaver (who lacks Attenbourough’s sense of child-like wonder). They also cut it up differently for commercials, so that the US version had more bait-and-switch (coming up, see if the baby blue whale survives this attack!)

    I’ll do what I did with Planet Earth – get the BBC DVDs.

  26. 26

    Never know, might make for some awesome fodder…

  27. 27
    dmsilev says:

    @Will: Amazon disagrees with you re: availability.


  28. 28
    Zam says:

    So a channel watched largely by hippies and stoners will now feature Palin? Awesome.

  29. 29
  30. 30
    clone12 says:

    You know all those “what ifs” historical scenario wondering what would have been had Fidel Castro made the Cubs instead?

    Well, think of it as the universe saying: “For the sake of humanity, Discovery Channel, you just have to take one for the team.”

  31. 31
    Elisabeth says:

    Shocked that -A-&E passed on this.

  32. 32
    slag says:

    On a serious note, I’ve been to Alaska. I’ve enjoyed backpacking, rafting, and kayaking through Alaska. So, all I have to say is this: Sarah Palin, please stop ruining Alaska!

  33. 33
    Helena Handbag says:

    Thanks for the link, dms

    Just pre-ordered it. I nearly cried when I heard about the Oprah narration and knew we’d have to wait for it on DVD. We watch Planet Earth over and over on blu-ray to get the BBC version – Attenborough is phenomenal.

  34. 34
    Mark S. says:


    $1.2 million? God that depresses me.

  35. 35
    Redshift says:

    I went looking for more info about the creationism angle, and came across this thread on a fundamentalist site where they all think Life is wonderful except for the occasional anti-creationist bits, and silly statements about the world being hundreds of millions of years old. It’s sort of bizarrely entertaining:

    I caught a subtle anti-creationism in the first episode, when describing how animals adapt the words “chance” and “luck” were used…when the amazing abilities God’s creature possess are in fact the result of Divine Providence.

  36. 36
    Steeplejack says:


    Which makes it another in a long stream of examples of a U.S. company putting out a markedly inferior product to the alternative put out by the Internet pirates.

    Or the foreign version. Which is the reason that I made sure the DVD player I just bought can be made region-free and plays both NTSC and PAL discs.

  37. 37
    freelancer says:


    Fundies say the darndest things.

  38. 38
    Dr. Morpheus says:

    @John Cole:

    They should name it the Beverly Chillbillies

    BWAHHH! HA! HA! HA! Perfect!

  39. 39
    gbear says:

    Wow. the rep who shouted ‘baby killer’ has a new fundraising ad, and it’s…well…better with the sound off. It’s worth watching for his wife’s eyes and, as a Wonkette commenter noted, for the name of his re-election committee. Stay till the end, even if you have to turn the sound off.

  40. 40
    freelancer says:


    See also Broadcast version of Friday Night Lights Season 1 vs the DVD release. The DVD’s cut the guts out of the music by Explosions in the Sky.

  41. 41
    gbear says:

    wow, whoever did that, I’m totally impressed. You’ve deleted the internets.

  42. 42
    Beauzeaux says:

    I stopped paying for cable/satellite a few years ago, largely out of frustration that I was give no choice about paying for channels that I would never watch. But that hasn’t stopped me from making a fairly decent living while working at a company that produces shows for cable TV.

  43. 43
    Anne Laurie says:


    I don’t think it has to do with creationists – they just think people won’t like the british accent, i’m guessing. They did this with Planet Earth as well; the BBC version had David Attenborough (who is always amazing), but the Discovery Channel version had Sigourney Weaver (who lacks Attenbourough’s sense of child-like wonder).

    No, it’s the Talibangelicals. Discovery has never officially admitted they caved like a cardboard chair, but Attenborough is Number Two on the “intelligent design” hate list, right behind Richard Dawkins:

    In 2002, Attenborough joined an effort by leading clerics and scientists to oppose the inclusion of creationism in the curriculum of UK state-funded independent schools which receive private sponsorship… In 2009, Attenborough stated that the Book of Genesis, by saying that the world was there for people to dominate, had taught generations that they can “dominate” the environment, and that this has resulted in the devastation of vast areas of the environment.[45] Attenborough further explained to the science journal Nature, “That’s why Darwinism, and the fact of evolution, is of great importance, because it is that attitude which has led to the devastation of so much, and we are in the situation that we are in.”[46]
    Also in early 2009, the BBC broadcast an Attenborough one-hour special, Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life. In reference to the programme, Attenborough stated that “People write to me that evolution is only a theory. Well, it is not a theory. Evolution is as solid a historical fact as you could conceive. Evidence from every quarter. What is a theory is whether natural selection is the mechanism and the only mechanism. That is a theory. But the historical reality that dinosaurs led to birds and mammals produced whales, that’s not theory.”[47] He strongly opposes creationism and its offshoot “intelligent design”, saying that a survey that found a quarter of science teachers in state schools believe that creationism should be taught alongside evolution in science lessons was “really terrible”.

    One reason the anti-science crowd can get away with so much is that “reasonable people” don’t even have the guts to admit they’re censoring their own work for fear of flaming hate-filled repercussions.

  44. 44
    Cat Lady says:

    @Dr. Morpheus:

    you broke the intertoobz dood.

  45. 45
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Stop this now.

  46. 46
    SpaceSquid says:

    I will literally try fucking anything at this point

    This may be the difference between English and American English talking, but shouldn’t that be “I will literally fucking try anything at this point”.

    It’s the difference between political desperation and the desire to take a run at anything with a hole.

    Not that I’m not prepared to believe the latter would apply to McCain, obviously. Perhaps it should be “I will literally fucking try fucking anything at this point”. That has a certain ring to it.

  47. 47

    What happens if Sarah finds a fossil?

  48. 48
    Comrade Kevin says:

    @freelancer: That sounds like something you can blame on a record company.

  49. 49
    Redshift says:

    @Anne Laurie: Not to mention that an awful lot of people in this country grew up when PBS was the only channel running significant amounts of nonfiction programming, and we tend to associate British accents with being smart and knowledgeable. I find it hard to believe that having a science program narrated by a Brit would negatively affect ratings.

  50. 50
    Brian J says:


    I absolutely love that idea. Of course, your suggestion for a show should be followed by a show on global climate change, narrated by Al Gore.

  51. 51
    Elisabeth says:

    Ooooo, someone made someone mad. Don’t talk about about the Sarah now.

  52. 52
    demo woman says:

    @Pigs & Spiders: hahahahahaha… first you have to assume that she knows what a fossil is.

  53. 53
    stickler says:

    Know what? I’d watch a Bible Spice special on Alaska. Come on: the woman got bested in an interview by Catie Kouric. (!!!) She’s a walking Mrs. Malaprop. You know that Discovery would try to edit the hell out of her performance just to polish it; but you can’t polish a turd. Remember when she pardoned a turkey in front of the turkey-slaughtering station? While a guy slaughtered a turkey? Right behind her?

    Yeah. I’m betting that this will be schadenfreude-licious.

  54. 54
    ajr22 says:

    I’m all for this. I would have to assume this would mean she is not actually considering running for president. I know with her nothing is certain but your resume containing “quit job, joined fox news, and filmed reality show for discovery channel” is not gonna cut it. And anything that keeps her from running is good for the country because A. We don’t have to deal with the shame that one of our major political parties nominated her. B. 0% chance of her running the country makes me feel muuuuuch better than even 1% chance.

  55. 55
    Emma says:

    clone12: It was the Senators. I know because my dad had an offer for a tryout too and my grandfather wouldn’t let him come to the States. Baseball was not a job for a grown man *sigh*

  56. 56
    Jay C says:


    LOL: Cong. Neugebauer’s ad was a hoot: and Mrs. N. was the funniest part! Her shifty-eyed discomfort reminded me of something; anyone remember the old (revived) Dragnet series on TV? Where at the end of the episode, the busted felon would be shown grimly facing the camera, while the solemn-voiced narrator droned out their conviction and sentence? I swear, put some numbers under Dana Neugebauer, and it would look she was starring in her own booking video….

  57. 57
    Comrade Mary says:

    Yes, I also hated the swapout of Attenborough’s narration for high Q American women in the American DVDs. Quelle diss!

    I recently saw a 1971 Attenborough documentary called A Blank in the Map, showing his travels through central New Guinea in an attempt to find a tribe that had never been contacted by Western people. Not only was it a damn good piece, it almost made me hate Attenborough against my will, because his baby-faced look and that cut-glass accent seemed so jarring and less wonderfully grandfatherly than the Attenborough of the past decade.

    The whole documentary is on Google here. It’s worth the hour.

  58. 58
    Redshift says:

    @stickler: Fortunately for Discovery, Mythbusters have already demonstrated that you can polish a turd, so they have the technology in-house.

  59. 59
    gbear says:

    OK, so who else has had every line of text lined out since comment 39? Is this an IE thing? Even the Contact, Pages, Recent Post and Comments, and Blogs We Read text is lined out. Even all the text in the comment box. Every last word of it. I’m really impressed.

  60. 60
    JD Rhoades says:

    @Comrade Luke:

    We were talking at dinner and we decided that the next Discovery channel special should be narrated by Mako, the actor who co-starred in (and did the voice over) for “Conan the Barbarian”:

    “The polar bear did not CARE anymore…life…death…the SAME…”

  61. 61
    Comrade Luke says:

    Fine, since no one will take the bait wrt the name for the special I’ll post a link directly to the comment.

    It’s too good to pass up.

  62. 62
    Comrade Mary says:

    gbear, it’s an IE thing, choking on the em-dash Dr. Morpheus used that was turned into a short strikeout on all sane browsers.

  63. 63
    Mike E says:

    Wow–looks like Tunch got all catnipped and scratched up the place!

  64. 64
    dmsilev says:

    @gbear: Looks fine (no mass strike-out of text) using Safari 4.


  65. 65
    maus says:

    I can’t wait for when we can get channels ala carte. I’ll actually start paying for TV.

  66. 66
    Annie says:

    I didn’t have that many glasses of wine, but I am seeing lines everywhere…Maybe it is time to call it a night…

  67. 67
    Elie says:

    Not sure what is happening but all of the replies above are struck out.

    I am trying to request that the Discovery Channel NOT hire Palin on their site. Must be a lot of traffic because they are really slow in evolving the way to ask them a question. I feel perfectly within my rights to terminate them on my Comcast and have no difficult doing so.

    Hope the above gets fixed – Seems to affect from comments 39 onwards

  68. 68
    Jon H says:

    @John Cole:

    Or ‘Whinasty’

  69. 69
    Comrade Mary says:

    Safari, Chrome and Firefox are all fine. It’s just IE that will be displaying the strikeout from #39 onwards.

    If you have another browser, try that instead of IE until this is fixed.

  70. 70
    Mike E says:

    FF is immune to the Tunch scratching too.

  71. 71
    Johnny Pez says:

    @Pigs & Spiders:

    Well, we already know what happens when the fossil finds Sarah Palin.

  72. 72
    Anne Laurie says:

    IE Users: Is fixtd now?

  73. 73
    Annie says:

    @Anne Laurie:


  74. 74
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Maybe this is on topic. No, probably not. But wotthehellwotthehell.

    Watching MSNBC (digression: Lawrence O’Donnell in for Keith again? WTF?) and they just ran a really smarmy Reagan commercial for GE.

    Let me sort this out. GE/NBC/MSNBC use one of their two remotely progressive programs to place a spot extolling the awesomeness and wonderfuldom of St. Ronnie and his decades-long commercial connection as a GE spokesman? I can haz 20-Mule-Team Borax plz?

    Seriously, I’m sorry, that’s a cynical a poke in the eye as I’ve seen since . . . uh, at least since Sunday night. Does GE think we’re stupid?

    /don’t answer. rhetorical.

  75. 75

    All I can say is that they better nail down everything of value in the studio before they let her and her family in there. Scratch that… If they are willing to pay her what has been reported than they really do want to be robbed.

  76. 76
    Regnad Kcin says:

    @Comrade Mary:

    If they had another browser, they would not be using IE, n’est çe pas?

    (Can’t wait to see what that character set does to Clippy and pals…)

  77. 77
    Elie says:

    Just finished submitting my comment on Discovery Channel web site (not easy and not sure it will get through) They obviously do not make it easy to comment but I basically told them that if Palin appears, I disappear as a customer and will let their advertisers know my sentiments as well

  78. 78
    Seanly says:


    That’s why I will at least view it once. Also, she may be full of teh stupid, but she’s got that MILF thing going for her, too.

  79. 79
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Regnad Kcin: IE6 was fine with those. Keep trying, you’ll break the thread yet!

    (Actually, that was my subtle way of trying to encourage people on home computers to GET A REAL BROWSER. Let’s see if it works :-)

  80. 80
    Comrade Kevin says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I missed that, maybe it was pre-empted by a local ad on my cable system.

  81. 81

    @SiubhanDuinne: It is jarring, isn’t it. I wish they’d show that movie clip of villain Reagan slapping around gun moll Angie Dickinson instead.

  82. 82
    Thoughtcrime says:

    @Pigs & Spiders:

    What happens if Sarah finds a fossil?

    Well, a fossil found Sarah, and we’ve seen how that turned out.

  83. 83
    Admiral_Komack says:

    “All Sarah Palin ever wanted to be in her whole life was a teevee host{…} Anyway now she’s got a deal to make a Discovery Channel show about Alaska, land of helicopter hunting and tattoo parlors. Majestic!”

    -“Also, too, also, too, also, mavericky, too, also, too, also, too,
    also, too, also, too, also, too, also, too, also, too, also, too, too, also, death panels, I can see Russia from my house, Neiman Marcus, also, too, also, too, also, too, also, too, also, too.”

  84. 84
    YellowJournalism says:

    @Jay C: I think there’s an excellent parody of this ad that has yet to be written. It will show all the things Mrs. N was really doing while the camera zoomed in on her husband.

    “I will continue to fight for the unborn.” Yeah, sure. Until they’re born, that is.

  85. 85
    Lesley says:

    Sarah Palin should narrate Deadliest Catch, considering she was all that to John McCain (who will never be forgiven).

  86. 86
    TrevorB says:

    attenborough version of life is available for pre-order through amazon. I will just wait for that to come out, instead of watch the dumbed down american version.

  87. 87
    Pasquinade says:

    Twitter users please use this #SarahPalinOnDiscovery when posting about Palin

  88. 88
    Sumit says:

    Man, when I was a kid the Discovery channel had some awesome shows on it. Documentaries were spoken with a fairly neutral, although slightly monotone, voice and they were interesting. I could watch them for hours and learn stuff.

    Now it’s all stupidly sensationalized. Science is interesting without needing Bill Nye. We’ve got an entire generation that won’t be interested in things without flashy colors and douche-bag personalities.

    And Palin needs to stop being relevant. She’s an idiot. She is an example of everything that’s wrong with women in this country. By giving her a show, we are creeping closer and closer to the world Mike Judge gave us in Idiocracy.

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