Big Spender (TV series)
Big Spender is a United States reality television series on the A&E Network. Host Larry Winget visits people in financial crisis, then advises them how to solve the problems and avoid repeating the same mistakes. The show is produced by NorthSouth Productions and premiered in July 2006.
|“||People would rather talk about their sex life on TV than their finances, because there's no defense for the fact that you're just an idiot.||”|
|— Larry Winget, The Arizona Republic, Feb. 15, 2007|
All episodes show:
- Winget visiting the individual(s) in crisis and assessing the situation
- An analysis of the elements in the financial crisis (e.g., consumer debt, overspending)
- A "contract" of required changes, which the individual(s) must discuss and sign
- Scenes of the individual(s) following or departing from the agreed-upon changes
- A return visit from Winget to examine whether the recommended changes were made
A writer for The Arizona Republic described Winget's style as "blunt" and "quite funny." Discussing Big Spender, the writer noted, "Every Saturday night, he can be seen berating people who make lousy financial choices." Another reviewer lauded the educational information, but said Winget "uses a form of tough love that is verbally harsh, caustic, and confrontational" and expressed the opinion that psychological counseling was a missing element from the show.
Winget has commented on the difficulty of finding participants willing to expose their financial difficulties on national television. The first season's participants all were drawn from the south Florida area, but producers planned to recruit nationally for the second season.
The show lasted only one season.
- Helen Huntley. "Are you a big spender? Watch this, feel better," St. Petersburg Times, July 16, 2006
- Randy Cordova.Larry Winget gets real: Midlife crisis turns motivational speaker into national star, The Arizona Republic, February 15, 2007
- Pam Gelman. Big Spender - TV-PG: Common Sense Review, Common Sense Media (undated)
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