What we can learn about storytelling from HGTV.

I am not a Home Depot guy.

Thank goodness I live in an apartment, because I’d rather go back to AP Calculus than fix a rain gutter or stain a deck.

I’ve just never been an interior-designing, renovating, home-fixer-upper, kind of guy.

Then how come I love me some HGTV?

It’s true.  Give me a House Hunters or Tiny Houses, and I’ll put down that Calculus equation and binge watch all night long.

What is it about these shows that gets me and so many others tingly all over?  And what does it have to do with a great play or musical?

It’s the idea of watching a transformation.  Watching something change.  And specifically, something that goes from overlooked and undervalued into something that has a ton of value and gets put in a deserved spotlight.

Those houses are like underdogs.  Those houses become everyday heroes.

Need a better example than HGTV?

How about those Oprah-like make over shows?  Come on, tell me you don’t tear up when you see someone lose weight, get pumped-up, or even just go through a wardrobe/hair/makeup change revealing the King/Queen that has been covered up by life?

The reasons these shows are popular, regardless of an audience’s interest in the subject matter, is because audience’s love watching something . . . especially someone . . . change for the better.

Because deep down it’s what they also want for themselves.

So if you’re ever stuck with your show, watch some HGTV and make sure your hero goes through the same thing as that three-bedroom fixer-upper on the outskirts of town.

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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.