I watch a lot of reality television and am always on the lookout for new southern-based reality shows, but one I liked almost right away was Billy the Exterminator. The show, which is set in Louisiana, follows Billy and his brother Ricky (with help from his parents Donnie and Bill, Sr.) whose company Vexcon is set up to help people get rid of snakes, wasps, cockroaches, and raccoons, among other critters that have invaded their homes. Billy, the show’s star, does his work while wearing all black (in the Louisiana heat and humidity) spiked wristbands, very often a hat, and his trademark thin sunglasses. He’s a bit wild man, and a bit rock ‘n’ roll.
This season the producers have taken Billy on the road to assist people in catching vermin in other states–Texas, Florida, and even Arizona, but I’m not so sure that Billy the Exterminator on the road is such a good idea. Some people might like to see him try his hand at catching a Javelina (which looks like a miniature wild boar) in the Arizona desert, but something about that episode didn’t resonate with me. While Billy is certainly the star of the show, in some ways so is the State of Louisiana. Louisiana is like another of the show’s characters. Having Billy and Ricky work in the desert may have seemed like a good idea to the producers, but he looks out of place and the show’s chemistry seems off.
I don’t think the producers should mess with what is clearly a successful formula. They might be able to take Billy out of Louisiana, but you can’t take Louisiana out of the show. That’s just not right.