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Handling With Care

8/06/2012 1:28 PM

Most cable viewers tune into their favorite channels and shows to be entertained. But a few networks have recently announced shows that may actually try to help viewers with personal crises.

Shows like A&E’s popular Intervention and Hoarders that lend a helping hand to people caught up in destructive and addictive behaviors will be joined on the cable dial in September by TV One’s Save My Son, which profile the struggles of black families to save their troubled sons when they’ve fallen victim to bad influences and choices. Educational activist Dr. Steve Perry and pro athletes such as former NBA stars Derek Anderson and Jalen Rose will join families in intervening with troubled youths to keep them from going down a wrong path that could lead to gangs, incarceration or early death.

BET will debut later this year The Mathis Project, featuring Judge Greg Mathis, aiming to empower neighborhoods plagued by unsolved homicides. The series follows the debut earlier this year of TV One’s Find Our Missing, in which the network teamed with the families of missing persons as well as advocacy groups to solve cases of African-Americans who disappeared.

OWN will take interventions out of the home and over to the people next door with Neighborvention, as struggling families find hope and counsel from other community members.

Even troubled pets are not immune to an intervention. Nat Geo Wild will team with Clint Eastwood’s daughter Alison to save wild animals from owners unable or unwilling to care for them, via Animal Intervention.

Some will argue that the majority of viewers tune in to these shows for entertainment as voyeurs peeking into the destructive lives of truly troubled people in their time of need. But give the networks credit for shining a light on often difficult situations and issues that are often ignored or swept under the rug, to the detriment of us all.

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