After three exciting months filled with gold stars, chicken beheadings, and hot-air-balloon rides, Kid Nation's inaugural season comes to a close tonight. We laughed; we cried; we laughed at crying children — all in all, the show exceeded many of our admittedly sky-high expectations. There were tears in the first five minutes of the season premiere and pretty much every episode thereafter. We watched Bonanza City get torn apart by religious differences and the kids dull their pain with root beer. We cheered when evil Taylor was voted off the town council and recoiled in horror when all the campers got cold sores. Kid Nation got us drunk and made us famous.
Our only quibble? We have not yet seen a child drink bleach. If you'll recall, the initial controversy over the show came from reports of kids not receiving adequate medical attention after four of them accidentally ingested bleach from an unmarked soda bottle (they all lived — relax!). We watched every episode (twice!), and we're quite sure that we haven't missed it. So, unless it happens tonight, Kid Nation's otherwise excellent first season will forever be tainted by broken promises and unrealized potential. Make it happen, CBS!
Earlier: 'Kid Nation': the Drinking Game