MTV's new makeover show takes on double-wide decor.
In TV’s red-hot home makeover craze, the trailer has been completely ignored — until now. MTV is entering the domestic design sweepstakes with the delightfully downmarket “Trailer Fabulous,” (search) a show that pokes fun at the endless product placement and orchestrated bathos of “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (search) while honoring a television format that has proven outrageously successful.
But will the MTV audience embrace the kitsch factor of double-wide décor? The host of “Trailer Fabulous,” rapper Brooks Buford (search), is optimistic. “You hear people say something is ‘Ghetto Fabulous,’” he says. “Well, this is the same thing, except it’s ‘Trailer Fabulous.’”Each week, Buford and a team of experts will roll up in their very own shiny silver Airstream to trailer parks from Georgia to Pennsylvania and get to work. Not only will the flimsy, pre-fabricated homes receive a top-to-bottom overhaul, so will their residents.
The experts are excited by the prospect of working outside their comfort zones. “People in trailer parks are no different than anybody else in this great country,” says Gino Panaro, the show’s landscape specialist and owner of the New Jersey-based landscaping company, Gino’s Crew. “We all deserve a makeover. I need a makeover. When my wife sees this [show], I’ll be reliving this in my home.”
In addition to Panaro, the experts include interior design guru Johnny Hardesty and popular New York fashion stylist Erika Martin, who handles the human makeovers.
To outfit the trailer residents Martin says she borrows “pieces from friends in the industry, who think the show’s premise is really cool and who think it’d be great to get their clothes on someone who normally wouldn’t have the opportunity to wear them.”Panaro doesn’t skimp on the landscaping, either. “The transformations are unbelievable,” says Panaro. “It’s what I would do in million-dollar neighborhoods. I use the same design concepts and materials, everything.”
While a makeover series may seem to be an odd fit for MTV, the network has already scored one hit in the genre, the jalopy-redesign show “Pimp My Ride.” (search) Currently in its fourth season, the show is presided over by a refreshingly clever host, hip-hop artist Xzibit (search).
Following in his footsteps on “Trailer” is Buford, a witty fellow who didn’t get the job because of his musical background — he actually grew up in a Georgia trailer park (he once released an album entitled, oddly enough, “Trailer Fabulous”). His double-wide cred, he says, allows him to “keep it real.”
“Maybe people in the Hamptons [will say] ‘Trailers! That’s hilarious!’” says Buford. “But it’s not funny at all. It’s just real. People in the Hamptons, they don’t know what it’s like to really be poor.”