Sunday, July 15, 2007

Army Wives

One of my latest guilty pleasures is watching the TV show “Army Wives” on Lifetime. Yeah, yeah, I know; watching Lifetime is just cause for taking away my Man Credentials, but the show doesn’t really suck. It’s an engaging show.

Granted, it’s a pretty idealistic and not completely realistic portrayal of military spouses or even military life on the whole, but at least it tries. It’s generating interest in the situations and difficult hardships endured by military families, especially during wartime. The bulk of American society has no idea what military families go through, and to have a show that portrays them in a positive light is a good thing. It’s produced by the guy who brought us Gray’s Anatomy, so it’s got credibility.

It’s the story of a group of Army spouses who through various circumstances band together for mutual support and friendship at the fictional Fort Marshall, which is supposed to be located in Charleston, SC. The show is filmed all around Charleston, so every episode features locations that I recognize. The bar where character Roxy works is actually Big Deck Daddy’s, a biker bar on Rivers Avenue that has a huge front deck.. Most of the on-base locations are either filmed on the old closed Navy base or on Charleston Air Force Base. Be damned if the Sherwood’s house doesn’t look like my folks’ old place in Hunley Park military housing across from the Air Force base. The Army recruiting station in last week’s episode is actually an old storefront on East Montague near the Madra Rua Irish Pub.

The show, airing Sunday nights at 10PM on Lifetime, has been a huge success so far and has been picked up already for a second season. The downer is that they may stop filming here due to a squabble with the state government over wage incentives to hire locals. I hope they continue to film here; it makes it all the more fun to recognize locales and such when I’m not poking fun at the ill-fitting berets of the troops, but that’s to be expected from an old Army guy like myself.

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