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Fish Tank Kings

Francis and Jose

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Francis and Jose mix like oil and water, sometimes it seems like they don't even speak the same language.

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Fish Tank Kings: Francis and Jose

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Francis and Jose mix like oil and water, sometimes it seems like they don't even speak the same language.

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Gary Wick
Gary Wick

I watched two episodes of "the Fish Tank Kings" recorded on 11-12-13. The program was interesting to me because of being a Nat Geo program, and because I had been an aquarium hobbyist for over 30 years. My emphasis had been in salt water tanks. Additionally, I was a marine biologist for over 12 years prior to changing professions

The people featured work in a commercial fish tank business that touts all aspects of original, artistic, extreme , unique and original aquarium design, including populating the task with fish.

I must say, the program had excessive amounts of unnecessary fabricated drama and incessant bickering comments , but then that seems to be the base of 'reality TV' these days.

The hour program shows some interesting species of beautiful sea animals and fish, as well as fresh water aquarium , but the accuracy of the on-screen facts that Nat Geo puts on the screen were suspect ( lion fish DO NOT use spines to stun their prey) . The "Kings" are all amped up in their on-camera dialogue, and there is a disingenuous discussion constantly. In particular , Francis, the program's rendition of the 'Marine Biologist' for the company that is featured, called 'Living Color' , becomes over the top in his boasting and arguments with José, the 'Artist' of the tank designs. The two men carry on unnecessarily. But individually, for me Francis was too much to like. He wasn't arrogant in his knowledge, but his delivery was like a bad car commercial! Yes, he has some experience with his diving and collecting of fish species because he lives in Florida, however his drama ( like in the episode where he was transferring a nurse shark from a tank it had out grown) was just awful.

Between the cheesy dialogue between the King's" Matt and the 'dentist who had everything' or José's rant on Francis' inability to to physical work ( which by the way doesn't mix if you know anything about diving) and the drummed up drama of situations that are made to appear to those of us watching like the sky is falling ( which all reality shows do) only to have everything is just perfect and awesome, the credibility of this show is limited

I don't knock the business or even the professional nature of the "Kings" , but as a program it could really be done better , especially considering it's produced by National Geographic

I rate the show generously at 2 of 5 stars. Stop the reality part, make it a bit more documentary-like , flush the false skepticism and canned drama and the story alone with really cool aquariums could get you 4 of 5 alone