Kid Nation
I'm Trying To Be A Leader Here

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The Mild, Mild West

Yes, this is the first commercial, thirty-eight minutes in. How hard was it to land sponsors for this thing? And even now there are only five spots, and one of them is for Survivor. It's like the length of the commercial breaks when I was these kids' age.

But the editors still think we need reminding of what just happened, when we come back a scant minute and a half later. And then we learn that option number two is -- you guessed it -- a TV. It's a big old console-style number that I didn't even think they made any more. Which I suppose is what the pioneers watched The Real World on, after all. Jonathan says the decision is up to the council, and they head off to confer, without even asking if they can take a vote. Jonathan stays behind to asks the kids what they think the choice will be, and a few of the kids make the case for TV -- as an incentive, a severe weather warning system, whatever. The majority, however, is of the opinion that crap trumps television. There are just too many possible levels of meta commentary here for me to even know where to begin.

Meanwhile, the only member of the Council leaning TV-ward is Mike, who says, "People are desperate for something to do." But then they come back, and announce that they chose the outhouses, and everyone cheers. Well, most of them do. I do hope TV gets offered as an option in a future challenge, and they take it, and then they find out they don't have any reception or a place to plug it in. And then they'll have nine toilets.

First thing in the morning on Day 4, the Council gets a ladder and wooden plaques with everyone's names on them, and sticks them on slots in the giant job board next to the church. You know, just like in the Old West. The first District we see at work is, naturally, Yellow, because they're responsible for breakfast. Eight- nine-, and ten-year-olds get busy in the kitchen, with what seems to be a very experimental spirit. Sophia stands outside with her Green bandanna on her head, horrified that they don't seem to be following any recipes. "I feel like sometimes I'm just surrounded by a whole lot of dumb people." That's Sophia's first lesson about being in a workforce. Savor it, young lady.

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Kid Nation

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