In Discovery Channel’s Alaskan Bush People Season 4 preview episode “Browntown or Bust” (April 29), the Browns look back at what they miss most about Alaska while Billy sought medical treatment in Seattle. Also included are never-before-seen footage from past seasons and sneak previews of Season 4.
Brownton Abbey has been silent for months. Bears roam the land with impunity. Fish are safe from bludgeoning. Kenny’s body lies a’mouldering in the root cellar.
But this tranquil scene will soon be disrupted by the terrible howling of Billy Brown’s brood. The Browns are returning to the bush after Billy’s three-month stay in Seattle to get medical treatment for Billy Brown Syndrome. This comes as a disappointment to me, because I’d hoped they’d take this shitshow on the road for Season 4 and give us new stuff to make fun of. Instead, we have to make fun of the same-old, same-old.
The family is staying in a motel in Seattle, where Billy complains about taking medications, Matt sleeps off another bender in the bathtub and they all while away the days reminiscing about those never-before-seen TV adventures.
Such as … gardening! Rainy and Birdy tend to the garden, and Noah and Bear arrive with the idea of making a “Bearcrow.” Noah, carrying two flimsy sticks tied together for the frame, looks like he’s on the procession to Calvary. They clothe the Bearcrow, which might stand upright for at least a few hours. Rainy is so loaded up with eye makeup, they could’ve just posted her up there.
Last season introduced us to Birdy and Rainy’s cats, and Birdy’s “MOW! MOW!” cat impressions. But viewers REALLY want to know if these cats are in danger from being devoured by bears. The answer: No. Bears can’t catch cats. In fact, bears seem kinda scared of cats. More reason to let the feral beasts overrun Chicago Bears Island.
Matt reminisces about his root cellar project, the “FrankenFridge” that some people (me?) called “FrankenFAIL.” What we didn’t get to see is how Matt transported the metal electrical cabinet from Kenny’s junkyard back to Brownton Abbey. We also didn’t get to see Matt and Kenny drinking water from a hose. “I love the taste of rubber!” Matt says. (DIGRESSION! When we were kids, we drank out of garden hoses all the time. It’s a miracle none of us died from typhoid.) We also didn’t get to see when Matt choked the life out of Kenny and buried him in the cellar. They must be saving that for this season’s “Lost Footage” episode. BTW, what’s up with Matt’s hair? Is he going for the Justin Guarini of the Bush look?
Also, what’s up with Bear’s red leather Thriller jacket? In a
deleted preview scene, we get to see Bear making a “mechanical bull” (a bucking barrel) out of a metal drum, some ropes and some springs. It’s an excellent waste of time and resources.
— Alaskan Bush People (@AlaskanBushPPL) May 4, 2016
“You have to be very tough to live in Browntown,” Rainy says. “You either die or survive. That’s how it works.” Well, yes, Rainy, that’s how it’s worked EVERYWHERE ON EARTH FOR HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF YEARS. You’ve been homeschooled well.
Another problem with the Lower 48 city life? You can’t “like, throw knives or shoot guns.” Indeed, these types of activities are frowned upon in Seattle. They’re more of a Chicago thing.
In another scene too dull to make the final cut, Billy bakes a cake for Noah’s birthday while Ami is laid up with Ami Brown Syndrome. (Remember all that bulljive about how the Browns don’t actually know when their birthdays are because they don’t look at the calendar out in the bush? They go by the “smells” of the seasons. Meh.)
There’s another deleted scene that throws a wrench in the gears of ABP‘s already shoddy plot machine. Last season, we saw Bear, Gabe and Rainy going out on an IMPORTANT alpine hunt that bagged zero deer and was interrupted by the gunshots from Brownton Abbey signaling that Billy was having a medical emergency. Now, in this new deleted scene, the alpine hunt resulted in someone (perhaps a Skaflestad?) shooting a deer and Gabe carrying it down the mountain. I suppose it’s possible there was a different, successful alpine hunt after the seizure incident, but that’s not how it’s edited for our consumption. Whatever. I’m thinking way too hard about this. This scene only exists so that hirsute cameraman Alex — who looks like he moonlights as the dictator of a Central American junta — can show off his Bush Toughness. Alex twists his ankle, and they make him a Bush Cast out of a plastic bag filled with moss and leave him for someone else to deal with. (Years from now, I want to take Alex out for a beer or six and have him tell me EVERYTHING.) And what’s up with all the twisted ankles on this show? I swear these people are worse floppers than Brazil’s soccer team.
We’re treated to a teaser of “Your Lower 48 Ways Are Frightening And Terrible” when Rainy drinks tap water on a dare and is completely grossed out. When did the Browns go to Flint, Mich.?
If the tap water doesn’t kill Rainy, then maybe the buoy swing will. On the Integrity, the kids hang a buoy from the boom and use it as a swing. Rainy tries it, and she thinks she’s going to die. Hey, you either die or survive, right?
In another scene off the cutting-room floor, we find Gabe and Matt in Gustavus doing odd jobs for people. This one hippie dude, we’ll call him Gus Davis, has a shack full of bats. From what I gather, Gus Davis wants to clear the bats out so he can use it as a nursery or something. Matt mentions that putting a baby in a bat-infested house is probably not a good idea. “No, not super conducive,” says Gus Davis. [DIGRESSION! I had a high-school chemistry teacher who overused the word “conducive.” I still love that word and want to use it unnecessarily all the time.] So what’s Matt and Gabe’s job, exactly? They’re supposed to install a bat locator and sound recorder provided by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Matt and Gabe play with the apparatus, which they claim translates human sounds into bat sounds. I can’t blame them for screwing around. To this day I can’t pick up a microphone without wanting to break into Human Beat Box mode. Not exactly sure why Gus Davis needs Matt and Gabe to install this thing, but apparently bats are kind of a big deal in Gustavus. I’ll let you guys read up on that. The last time I did research, I became an expert on the history of canned Halibut.
After sitting through 50-plus minutes of that crap, we’re finally rewarded with some BOMBSHELLS!
A) The show is not going to ignore the whole jail thing, after all. Billy says that he and Bam are going up to Juneau to serve time for the whole PFD fraud thing. We know that they’re not behind bars, but doing time on ankle monitoring.
— Ryan Berenz (@ChannelGuideRAB) April 19, 2016
B) Billy and Ami have a long-lost daughter? Wha? People have been tossing all sorts of stuff around on the internets about the skeletons in this family’s closet. (The best and funniest was the rumor that Rainy is actually Bam’s daughter.) I’m so skeptical of everything on this show that it wouldn’t surprise me if the daughter was a complete fabrication, inspired by that whole Ami’s Mama Drama business. [Update: The daughter appears to be Twila Wilson, one of two daughters Billy had from a previous marriage.]
C) “Our family was served with news that could change our life forever,” says Billy.
See you guys for the season premiere on Friday.