by Michael Schneider
For her new series Raising McCain (Saturdays, 10/9c, Pivot) Meghan McCain hit the road to explore some of her generation’s hot-button issues. Among the topics the daughter of Sen. John McCain explores: bullying, feminism, spirituality, promiscuity and the “death of romance.” This week’s episode will also feature an interview with her famous father. McCain, who also serves as an executive producer, explains why she hopes audiences will pivot in her direction.
TV Guide Magazine: I have time to watch one more show. Why should it be yours?
Meghan McCain: My show is a fusion of entertainment and education. I’m not claiming to have all of the answers, but we raise important questions and address them in a fun, quirky and unique way. It’s a talk show filmed like a documentary and there is no fourth wall or any other indication that we are making a television show. I had a great time making it, and I think the audience will see that. It’s a show for people who want to talk about serious issues facing this country and our generation, yet don’t want to be lectured by people who think that they are smarter than everyone else.
TV Guide Magazine: Who should watch?
McCain: I hope that it is high school and college students as well as people who hate the cable news cycle but still want to watch something substantive. My show is for anyone who wants to come along for the ride, has an open mind and will take a chance on a new television format.
TV Guide Magazine: Give us an equation for Raising McCain.
McCain: Chelsea Lately plus Meet The Press plus Jackass minus Wee-Man.
TV Guide Magazine: What happens if we don’t watch your show?
McCain: You’ll miss out on a good time.
TV Guide Magazine: What’s the best thing anyone has said or written about your show?
McCain: That we are a groundbreaking format. My producers, crew, cameramen and interns all appear on the show. I can’t handle false pretenses so we decided to remove any idea of a fourth wall and include the audience on the journey.
TV Guide Magazine: What’s the worst thing?
McCain: That I’m making a reality show. The assumption that I’m going to be flipping tables or making out with someone on the show couldn’t be further from the truth.
TV Guide Magazine: Who was right?
McCain: I didn’t make a traditional dramatic reality show, but I’m not sure yet whether or not the groundbreaking format statement will resonate.
TV Guide Magazine: What’s an alternate title?
McCain: I liked Unapologetically Meghan and The McCain Experiment.
TV Guide Magazine: Your generation has been dubbed “Millennials.” What would you like to call it?
McCain: The head of my network, Evan Shaprio, calls Millennials “the next greatest generation,” and I have always liked that.
TV Guide Magazine: Come up with a premise for the spin-off.
McCain: Definitely something with my little brother, Jimmy, who plays a big part on the show. Perhaps Jimmy in an RV driving across America and trying out different jobs for a day. Something ridiculous like that.
TV Guide Magazine: What moment of yours would you prefer we forget?
McCain: I was set up on a group date on the show. In general I hate dating so my reaction was fairly ridiculous. It made the show but it’s quite embarrassing!
TV Guide Magazine: What’s the thing about you people get the most wrong?
McCain: I actually think, for the most part, people get it right with me with the exception of super-extreme conservative pundits. I feel like the world has a pretty good understanding of who I am and am not.
TV Guide Magazine: Let’s scare the network. Tell us an idea that didn’t make it on to the screen.
McCain: The best part about working for Pivot is that nothing I said or pitched scared them. It’s why I decided to take the plunge and have the show on this network. I have never worked with cooler people in the corporate world.
TV Guide Magazine: Finish this sentence: “If you like _______, you’ll love our show.”
McCain: America, drinking, young people and discussing issues facing our generation.
TV Guide Magazine: Pick a pundit and start a fake feud.
McCain: I have had so many feuds with horrible people, like Glenn Beck, that I feel like I am too old to get into them anymore!
TV Guide Magazine: How will your show change the face of TV as we know it?
McCain: Hopefully it will change how the media talks to young people. I often find the media to either be dismissive or preachy. This show embraces my generation while understanding that we consume media and information in an entirely different way than ever before. At the very least, it’s the first time I believe any politician’s daughter has been so open or had so much fun on TV!