The latest and probably most recognizable media attention that craft beer industry has been receiving as of, well, Sunday is the Discovery Channel’s new series Brew Masters, featuring Sam Calagione from Dogfish Head Brewery. This sensationalized look at the craft beer industry is drawing mixed feelings from not only myself, but other beer enthusiasts across the web.
My worry started from the minute I witnessed cutesy animations and images that portray a Beer Wars-esque documentary style show. Bloated with lack-luster history lessons and over-simplified commerical brewing processes, Brew Masters may not have what it takes to sustain a long-term viewership. Granted, for us, the “beer nerds” out there — we love this type of stuff. And don’t misconstrue the above into thinking I hate the show. I don’t — I like it. But that’s me, a small portion of what Discovery is probably hoping to reach.
The show, so far, is geared to a very small, niche demographic of viewers. If you don’t love, appreciate and sort of know about beer and brewing, I could easily see how this would put you to sleep faster than Rohypnol. Our star, Sam Calagione, on the one hand has an infectious, happy and cheerful attitude about what he does. You can tell he’s passionate about his company, products and people. But that can only go so far for viewers. There’s no clash of personalities, no tension and no drama. I don’t need any drama but a large majority of viewers do and that alone may keep their attention longer, I think.
It’s only been one episode but with tacky rap interludes that consumed a more-than-necessary part of the last half of the show, and bland dialogue, the question becomes will this be enough to keep viewers interested? Us “beer nerds” and lovers are a small portion of viewers that will stick with the show. In order to keep Brew Masters coming back after this season, the ratings and viewers need to be there. I’m just wondering will this type of script and style of show be enough to loop in the masses? I would hope so, but I fear not.
We’ll all witness over the next few weeks what Brew Masters is at its core and tell whether or not it will be here for the long haul. Personally, I enjoy the concept of the show, Sam and his entire team – but does everyone else? That’s going to be the true test.
What are your thoughts on Brew Masters?
Title photo courtesy of dsc.discovery.com
Shane Holland is the Editor-in-Chief for Passion Beer.
He is a self-proclaimed craft beer geek and an all around lovable dork. He loves homebrewing, everything Philadelphia, traveling and enjoying the pleasures of life.