Tonight, Amy Poehler finally returns to the small screen since her work on Parks and Recreation and Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later. However, Making It is a little different than her past projects, but it's exactly the project we need right now. Poehler joins Parks and Rec co-star Nick Offerman to host the craft competition show on NBC — think The Great British Baking Show but with felt. As reality stars throw drinks in each other's faces and bicker on stage, Making It takes the Queer Eye approach to reality TV: It wants you to feel good.
Having Poehler and Offerman on the same screen again is reason enough to smile, but while watching the first episode of the series at a special preview last week, I felt warm due to more than just that. Making It is clearly not about the drama. In fact, Poehler somewhat pokes fun at the show's wholesomeness by reacting to the show's events as if they were Housewives -level showdowns rather than someone accidentally popping a balloon. It's about creativity, taking what's unique about a person and celebrating that through art.
The contestants each have their own crafting stations, and must complete two crafting challenges each episode. The judges, Barneys creative ambassador Simon Doonan and Etsy trend expert Dayna Isom Johnson, then deliberate over the final products. At the end of every episode, one person will be eliminated, and slowly but surely the remaining maker at the end of it all will be crowned "master maker."
While this is technically a competition, it doesn't harbor any of the negativity that could come with it. The makers help each other out and give each other support. During one notable moment in the first episode, one rushes to help another when it seems they might be falling behind. You want them to succeed not just because they're good at crafting, but because they're good at being people, as well.
The same way every Queer Eye episode ends with a tear, you may find yourself getting equally choked up at the sheer lovability of the makers and their passions, even if they don't make it to the end. But hey, if you get even the shortest opportunity to make crafts with Amy Poehler, then you're pretty much a winner already.
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