"Here Comes Honey Boo Boo" may be about to lose its crown as most-ridiculed show on television. That's because The Learning Channel (TLC), the same network behind Honey Boo Boo and other cultural landmarks such as "Cake Boss" and "Extreme Couponing," is launching a new show based on a funeral home.
EW reports that "Best Funeral Ever" will air on Dec. 26 as a one-time special. It will go behind the scenes of the Golden Gate Funeral Home in Dallas, a truly, well, unique funeral home. If the show gets strong-enough ratings, it's expected to be picked up as a full-time series.
Golden Gate's funeral director, John Beckwith, helps each family plan an unconventional service followed by what he calls a "wild party." Some funerals have included a barbecue-themed memorial—featuring a sauce fountain—and one was held inside a boxing ring.
In the past, Yahoo News has reported on extravagant funeral options, including a $35,000 gold-plated coffin. But this is the first we've heard of a funeral home creating scenarios in which the deceased can (kind of) slam dunk a basketball, which Beckwith says is another one of its potential services.
"We do not have generic funerals," Beckwith tells a family attending a memorial planning session. "Everybody's experience has to be different."
In a clip for the show, Beckwith says Golden Gate's services are based on the tradition of homegoing funerals, which have their roots in the African-American community and are constructed as a more vibrant and positive occasion than some traditional funerals.
(When the singer Whitney Houston passed away, her family sent out invitations that said the services would be done in the style of a homegoing.)
"We're going to make these families extremely happy at the worst moments of their lives," Beckwith told EW.