The reality TV concept of following unique and unusual characters who work in a unique and unusual profession has become a tried and true formula like the sitcom or the procedural crime drama. From Cake Boss to Wicked Tuna to American Pickers — the outside the box and quirky careers of people has been making for entertaining television.
But the thing with successful formulas is the risk of being…formulaic. Luckily, for Spike’s new high-seas series The Diamond Divers, the formula of documenting people in their element has been given a bit of a twist. The twist here is that Captain John Aydelotte and his crew of salty dogs aren’t professional diamond divers — they’re actually a marine salvage crew who’s work has been so effected by the economy that they’re taking on a high-risk, high-reward gig of crewing a boat that’s hunting for diamonds off the coast of South Africa in order to survive.
This twist adds a real sense of human drama to The Diamond Divers. The Captain and his crew are pretty open about the fact that if they fail on this job, they’re all cooked, all going to be broke and life is pretty much going to take a severe turn for the worse. In today’s economic climate, how can you feel for these guys? How can you not want them to succeed? This twist really sets the show apart from the ‘here’s my weird job’ reality show craze that’s running rampant on nearly every cable network.
The dramatic motivation for all the main characters on the show will keep you engaged and help pass by the moments of reality regularity (father and son bickering, macho beer-induced bar brawls, etc.). Ultimately, The Diamond Divers is a fun show; a solid series that’ll entertain, the kind of show you’ll grab a marathon weekend and find yourself engrossed. Overall a good show, one we recommend.