When I heard Ed Begley Jr. was getting his own reality show, my first reaction was a slack-jawed "seriously?" Begley, the earnest "St. Elsewhere" star who makes me laugh even when he's not trying to be funny, wasn't high on my list of celebrities whose lives I'm dying to explore.
But "Living with Ed," Begley's new HGTV show, looks like it could surprise me. Begley's a totally committed environmentalist who's known for riding his bike to Hollywood events, and the show focuses on life at his little California house, where he powers his lights with solar panels and times his wife while she's in the shower.
Begley's fervent commitment to a green lifestyle has been a Hollywood punchline for a while — I mean, the man lent his name to a natural cleaning product. Basically, he's his "Six Feet Under" character, the outdoorsy, electric-car-driving Hiram — only more extreme. When I saw the dead-serious picture of him meditating on the "Living with Ed" site, I figured the show would be way too preachy. But the video clips actually made me laugh, so read more
The clips on the show's MySpace page are pretty funny, thanks to Rachelle Carson, Begley's wife, who keeps it real while her husband rhapsodizes about his lifestyle. He shows off his solar oven; she points out she has to plan her cooking days in advance. He gushes about how he can eat straight from his garden; she admits the apples are pretty sour.
Of course, green living is serious business (see also An Inconvenient Truth), and I'm all for finding ways to make a difference — even if Begley's model is a little extreme. "Living with Ed" looks like it could make me chuckle while also giving me a few environmental tips, so I might have to check out an episode or two. What about you? Did anyone catch the sneak peek on Monday?