*Possible Spoilers Below*
As many of you know Ice Road Truckers season six premeired this past Sunday on the History Channel. I also know that many of you gave up on IRT seasons ago due to the over done reality show editing. I totally agree that past seasons relied waaaay too heavily on the “who will fall through ice” or “who will die” hooks at the end of each episode. As we all know, the big surprises just never materialized. It was always my contention that truckers driving over fractured sea ice through blizzards and arctic temperatures was more than exciting enough. Fake drama need not apply. By now you know that I am truck obsessed and basically watch any television program that revolves around them so I suffered though it all in the name of diesel!
My impressions for this first episode of the new season are largely positive. The producers still want us to cling to the contest elements of show by shoving load tallies down our throat at the end of each episode. I’ve never been entirely convinced that the drivers care too much if they beat someone driving a truck thousands of miles away. At the end of the season the paycheck will do all the talking. As a viewer I certainly could care less. Show me trucks!
The cast this season has changed with females drivers Lisa and Maya being AWOL. I can’t say I really blame them. Lisa has been pretty active in both the IRT and Deadliest Road franchises the past few seasons. Lord knows I would be tired of multiple cameras staring at me all day long. Our long standing Canadian truckers of Hugh, Rick and Alex return yet again. They are joined by their American counterparts of Jack and rookies Ron, Darrell and Austin. We know what to expect with Hugh and Rick and they don’t disappoint in the first episode. Alex is just Alex. He drives, he laughs, he delivers. They both are driving the same trucks from last season, in fact you would be hard pressed to tell you were watching a new season. Baby faced Austin joins the show to replace the void left by TJ from season one. Darrell appears to be ready to fill the shoes left by Dave after his arrogance lead to his termination. Ron, AKA Porkchop, is purely the comic relief at the moment.
No matter how repetitive the show can I can always get lost watching the trucks. This season Alex is behind the seat of a bright red International ProStar+ Eagle. A pretty fancy trucks for the ice roads of the Yukon. For reasons never explained the ProStar simply stalls on the side of the road. Alex looks at the gauges confused, tries to to turn the vehicle over a few times and eventually gets it to go. Nothing about the event is mentioned again! WHAT?! Hugh is back with his International 9400 and Rick with his Western Star. Both beat on their trucks without mercy but they take it. A pretty good testimony to their builders when you think about it. As expected the Carlile drivers are still behind the wheel of Kenworths.
The first episode was solid. I didn’t catch any shots of cabs that don’t belong with their exterior shots. The random horn sound each time another truck passes by is still there but not as heavily used. The cliff hangers and commercial breaks are good enough to keep you tuned in but not cheesy enough to drive you away. All in all, a good start.