Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution: Mandatory TV for Veggie Advocates
The first two episodes of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution are now online for free viewing. I just watched episode 1 and could not have been more impressed. This is truly important and groundbreaking TV, and it’s extraordinarily well done. Consider it an absolute must-watch for every veggie activist.
Watching this episode, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the main point that Jonathan Safran Foer made in his December podcast interview with me: that it’s all about keeping the conversation going, and convincing people to take the next step rather than the last step.
To me, effective advocacy starts not by talking, but rather by listening to people in order to understand their current reality. And Jamie Oliver does a masterful job of listening throughout this first episode. In fact, his listening skills are the only reason he’s got any chance to ultimately succeed.
Oliver couldn’t have possibly picked a tougher nut to crack. The show is set in a small West Virginia town that has the country’s highest rates of obesity and diet-related disease. The culture of food that Oliver’s up against seems almost designed to frustrate a food activist at every turn.
Oliver’s certainly got his work cut out for him. There’s a real chance he’s going to fall flat on his face, and the fact that he’d even attempt to do this work on national television shows massive courage. Win or lose, I’m hooked, and I can’t wait to see what happens next. I’ll blog about episode 2 tomorrow. (Thanks, Brendan.) Link.