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The Food Network Set to Introduce Random Violence into Programming
The Food Network announced today that the channel will begin introducing random acts of violence into their programming starting during 2010's second ratings quarter in a bid to boost ratings.
Already riding high after posting record ratings in 2009, Food Network Program Director Nathan Bowman says the blending of senseless physical brutality with culinary themed content is part of a campaign to further broaden the network's audience.
"Making our programming more multi-dimensional will enable us to target new demographic groups," Bowman said, "Simply put, while its possible to attract so many viewers interested in learning new recipes and cooking techniques, there are millions more who'd enjoy seeing Bobby Flay get clocked in the jaw with a tenderizing mallet."
Bowman emphasized his belief that food and violence is a viable combination.
"If pointless violence isn't your thing, fine – the host or guest or whomever will likely soon recover from whatever unwarranted attack he or she was just subjected to and get on with the show, while viewers who think cooking shows are boring can be assured that if they watch long enough, something bad-ass will happen."
Viewer response to pilots of new shows and existing Food Network programs revamped to include acts of random violence seem to support Bowman claims. For example, one member of a test audience for The Rachel Ray Show wrote: "Rach's recipe for Asian pepper steak looked delicious and budget friendly!” while another participant in the same audience responded, "Awesome show - especially when the bald guy told Rachel Ray to shut up and shoved the raw meat in her mouth."
Even despite receiving hundreds of complaints that decried the disfigurement of Guy Fieri during a recent taping of "Diners, Drive-ins and Dives" in which the owner of a diner in Barstow, California fired a skillet full of hot grease in Fieri's face, Bowman says he wants to see the bacon fly.
"The last thing you want to do is stifle anyone's spontaneity," said Bowman, "And for everyone who complained over that Fieri incident there were a dozen more who loved it. Turns out most people hated that guy."
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