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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Friday, April 18, 2014

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In Movies & TV Commentary

Showtime Eric Young, professional wrestler and amateur fisherman, starts the second season of "Off the Hook: Extreme Catches" in June.

Outdoors shows mark changing of the season


As the spring weather finally takes hold and the ice that covered area lakes and streams melts away, anglers have been prepping their rods and reels to go after the big one. Fishing season is upon us, and that means so are the outdoors shows.

In our community, we are blessed with great places to enjoy the outdoors and put a line in the water and wait for a fish to take a bite. Whether it is off the dock on Lake Michigan, or a spot in one of our wonderful parks, families can spend the day under the sun with the winds blowing and take in the nature that surrounds us.

For others, it may mean prepping the boat in the garage, and traveling to a favorite fishing spot for the day or the weekend.

For professional wrestler and amateur fisherman Showtime Eric Young, it means taking a camera crew to different locations throughout the world to practice his new favorite pastime. Animal Planet is set to run 18 new episodes of "Off the Hook: Extreme Catches" starting on June 16.

Young's quest will lead him to the Bering Sea, going with a group of cod fisherman on a three-day journey in sub-zero waters. He will also hit tropical islands of the Atlantic, where he'll avoid sharks while spearfishing in the ocean. It will be a far cry from going after some perch like I and my neighborhood friends would do at McGovern Park on Milwaukee's North Side.

I guess that's what TV can do, it opens up experience and possibilities of wonderment to places few of us will ever get to experience. It can take a simple activity like fishing, that connects us with cultures around the world, and people who enjoy a common bond while being out on the open water.

"Showtime Eric Young embraces odd, local traditions practiced for decades and centuries, and no matter how long it takes, how crazy it seems or how many bumps and bruises he gets along the way, he won't stop 'til he catches the ultimate fish," Animal Planet writes in a release about the show.

For those of you that enjoy the art of snagging a fish after masterfully baiting it to the hook, you can relate. For others who just enjoy the Wisconsin tradition of a family fish fry, you may appreciate where your dinner came from.

MOVING ON: As speculated before, for "American Idol" the writing is on the wall. For ratings survival, the show has to change its formula. Judge Randy Jackson, the only original panelist left on the singing competition, announced last week that he is leaving after 12 seasons.

"Yo! Yo! Yo! To put all of the speculation to the rest, after 12 years of judging on 'American Idol' I have decided it is time to leave after this season," he said in a statement.

Reports have pointed to producers' plans to start next season with a completely new set of judges, to stem the tide of the show's worst ratings since its launch. That leaves Mariah Carey, Keith Urban and Nicki Minaj on the docket to release their own plans to leave before being fired.

GONE: TNT announced that the cop drama "Southland" will not be renewed. The Turner Network station picked up the show after it was dumped by NBC.

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