This has, apparently, been a fun pandemic. Online, anyway.
CBS’ second at-home videos special (8 p.m. Friday, July 24) does the same as the first, only more so. It has a dizzying collection of videos people created at home.
(Shown here is one family’s “Les Miserables” take-off.)
There’s a magic trick – showing exactly how it’s done to the camera, but not to an astonished friend. And an editing trick, making a guy seem to fly around above his swimming pool.
But some of the best don’t involve trickery – just true skill. A young gymnast does amazing thing while arcing over giant balls; muscular dads do great stunts with their kids.
That leads to the one problem with this special – the sharp time limits. Many videos were created on the TikTok app, which generally had a 15-second limit (sometimes expanded to 60 via editing). The show often lets them streak past us, giving us little chance to admire what’s happening.
That was also a problem with the first special. Both are hosted by Cedric the Entertainer, with subtle changes. The first one was sometimes called “The Greatest #Stayathome Videos”; the second no longer uses the word “stay.” It includes the splendid moment of two girls, finally re-united for a long hug … and the moment a mom, an essential medical worker, surprised her daughters after nine weeks.
The special likes such bits of warmth. We meet the mail-carrier who managed to connect Tony Hawk with a toddler fan; during a Zoom interview, Smokey Robinson pops in to serenade a 95-year-old.
Yes, celebrities appear occasionally. (Who kmew that Arnold Schwarzenegger has a donkey in his exercise room?) One of the best – and simplest – bits came from Kylie Jenner and her toddler:
Set up a camera, put candy in front of a toddler and give one instruction: Don’t eat it until you return.
The result has subsequently worked with lots of other babies and even a dog. All sorts of emotions – desire, frustration, anticipation, temptation – dance across faces. We know the feeling