Cross it off the list! Not really, but let’s just cross off the list that The Buried Life boys didn’t get arrested, marry some random girl or die. Oh yeah, and they completed a second season. Anyone who knows about my not so secret obsession with the show and the dudes knows that I’m their harshest critic. This season left me really wondering if my heroes had fallen prey to the network system. This season came off more as a gimmicky “What celebrity can we have on next?” type show than a genuine show with heart. The episodes focused less on helping others and way more on just random acts of randomness. Season one was so powerful because it showed the boys, not only helping others, but the task they tried to complete for themselves were actual things everyone at one point has thought about. Such things included, asking out a girl or guy of someone’s dream, having a child, playing ball with the president, etc. Universal subjects, but this season it’s been more of things that make good parodies, like a Castaway parody with being stranded on an island or The Hangover with getting married in Vegas. If the show wasn’t parodying a movie it was bringing on celebrities like Taylor Swift and Robert Pattinson. Then if not either of those the show was doing stunts similar to Jackass like streaking a stadium. The whole season felt like The Buried Life trying to cater to MTV’s audience and increase ratings instead of following their heart.
The only redeeming moment of this season came at the year end with the episode “Make a Million Dollars.” The boys found their heart again with focusing a lot on helping others. The one story, in particular, that for sure made more Jonnie Penn lovers, involved him helping a young boy, named Lucas, buy his dad a house. Then watching all four boys, or just three, because Jonnie spent his time helping Lucas instead of trying to make money, highlighted their personalities well. Ben chose to bet all his money on horse races. This shows how Ben’s carefree spirit allows him to take big risks. If it works out he’s happy, but if not he doesn’t stress it too much. Dave, the life of the party, chooses to invest in a clothing line of one-zies….which seems like the dumbest idea of all three, but it works with Dave. He takes risk no one else would want too and they usually pay off. Though, on the episode he lost $10,000 instead of making a million, but that’s still better than Ben who ended up owing $150. Last, clearly, more than just a pretty face, Duncan invests in gold on the stock market and turns his $25,000 to $140,000. Fifty of which he conceals making, in order to keep the guys from wasting all of it.
The boys in perfect buried life fashion decide to try to turn the 90,000 into a million by going to Vegas baby! Of course, if you’re like me, you scream “Nooooooooooo! Don’t do it!” at your computer or television. Their trip to Vegas brings the season full circle and some of the important figures of previous episodes resurface. Michelle, Dave’s wife, is there cheering him on. Duncan texts Taylor Swift and asks her what color to bet on. Then, earlier, Dave went to see a millionaire he met while training for his MMA fight. The boys took a chance and listened to Taylor and bet red on the first one. Then win, crowd goes wild. Then they debate for a little while and then they bet on black this time and…..they lose. Big time. All of it. No more money for them. They look devastated but one of the Vegas gambling experts is so impressed with them that he gives them $50,000. Then Duncan confuses he secretly kept $50,000. Now they have a $100,000, for those who lack basic math skills, and use that money to give to a girl who uses it for Feeding America, an organization that works to cure world hunger.
This episode the boys even state why they’re trying to make a million and it’s about how that’s something so many people want to do. This relays back to what made me fall in love with the show season one: it spoke to dreams of the world. Not something only Dave, Duncan, Jonnie and Ben cared about. Dreams everyone shares. It took the boys the whole season to get back to their roots but when they finally did, it felt better than actually seeing them make a million dollars. It felt like watching their rebirth.