Okay, this program is bullshit, but I'll admit to watching it. The premise is this: self-proclaimed inventors from across the country showed off their wares to a panel of four judges. The judges narrowed the field to twelve semi-finalists. The semi-finalists were each given $50,000 to polish up their invention. Based on what they accomplished in that round, the field will be narrowed to a final four and the ultimate winner will get $1 million.
For me the bullshit detector went off when I saw how many of the inventions involved bodily functions. Are people really that fixated on peeing, defecating and farting? There was a guy who had a cape that you could don so that you could pee into it if you couldn't find a toilet. There was another guy who had sanitary napkins with a carbon filter that were supposed to take away the stench from a fart.
These people have to be ringers. They've got to be actors that were paid to look stupid. Who would honestly believe that they could win a million dollar completion with a toilet paper/hand lotion combo dispenser? Or a stick that's supposed to ward off mountain lions?
Now that they're working their way down to the final four, the inventions are a little more viable. There was a portable gym, a tool for rapidly making sandbags and a reversible umbrella, among other things. Unfortunately, none of the inventions shown is really worthy of a $1 million prize. Still, American Inventor is interesting enough to watch on a boring Thursday evening.