NEW YORK – Suppose you came home one day and Snoop Dogg had redone your living room, or Tommy Lee had redesigned your bedroom?
Well, that's the idea behind VH1's Rock The House -- an attempt to jump on the home decorating craze that has sky rocketed since Discovery Channel's Trading Spaces debuted.
Shows like Trading Spaces and HGTV's Designing for the Sexes, have captured the country's imagination, and grabbed viewers of every age -- from the coveted Gen Xer's to the richer baby boomers. Now every suit in TV is trying to figure out how to ape them.
It's the Survivor mentality: If something works for them, then it's got to work for us, too. Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn't.
On Trading Spaces friends or neighbors exchange places for a day, and with the help of a team of designers and a very, very limited budget, they redecorate a room in each other's houses.
On Designing for the Sexes, a couple tries with the help of a designer to decorate a room when they have opposite ideas about what it should look like.
On Rock The House however, a rock star sneaks into the home of an unsuspecting fan and redoes a room in his/her signature style. The fan comes home to find not only that the rock star has done a job on a room, but that the rock star is there to greet them, too.
Since presumably these are die-hard fans, whatever the rocker does will of course be insane-and exactly what the fawning fan dreams of.
That's all fun. What isn't so much fun is the host, Lisa Snowden, who is so busy showcasing herself that she spends hardly anytime talking with designers-Kelly Van Patter and Paul Roome (yes that's his name).
So we never really get to know exactly how the designers are doing what they're doing, so we can do it too.
On the premiere, Sammy Hagar goes to the home of one of his biggest fans, and redoes the living room. The wife (who is the mole in this case), gets the husband off to work totally unaware of what's about to happen in his house.
He comes home at the end of the day to find his living room redone -- Sammy Hagar-tropical-style complete with thatched trim, a beach bar mural, new chaise lounge-like furniture and a bamboo beach bar. The fan almost drops dead with joy and shock.
So what's wrong?
The whole thing could be a lot better if they took you step-by-step through the how-to's like the other shows do instead of wasting time and footage having everyone constantly mug into the camera (Jennie McCarthy wore that annoying bit out years ago).
Also they keep tricking up the camera to make it look like 1960's home movie footage which is not only unnecessary, but takes away from what the heck is being accomplished in the room.
Finally, the whole thing would work better if they'd gotten a host who knows something about, well, anything.
At one point Snowden exclaims, "Kelly -- I love this mural."
What does works is the overall concept. It could be a million laughs, not to mention informative, if they'd get out of their own way, and really let the rocker get into the decorating, which I suspect will happen over time.
Upcoming episodes will feature Ice-T, Tommy Lee, Paula Abdul, the Goo Goo Dolls, Snoop Dogg and Weird Al.
Good thing Michael Jackson isn't featured, or the fan would end up with a nursery school motif in his den.