Ron Batzdorff/Courtesy NBC
Alas, you've run out of time to catch new episodes of Little Big Shots: Forever Young, the seniors spin-off of NBC's hit talent show Little Big Shots. Over the course of its six-episode run that ended last week, the show featured all sorts of seasoned showbiz wannabes, from a yodeling grandma to a crazy contortionist granddad to the world's fastest omelet maker.
Hosted by Steve Harvey and produced by Harvey and Ellen DeGeneres, Forever Young wasn't a reality competition — like the original Little Big Shots, which features youngsters performing acts of derring-do, there were no prizes, trophies or cash awards. It was just a chance for talented folks of a certain age to demonstrate their unique skills and for the audience to "celebrate the wit and wisdom of our elders," as NBC exec Paul Telegdy said when announcing the show last year.
It fulfilled that mission and then some. Ratings started out fairly strong but fell a bit as the show ran its course. So the jury is out on whether we'll see it again next summer. Here's hoping. If not, there are on-demand, online and streaming service viewing options for season one — and we'll always have the Feisty Grandmas.
Until we meet again, here are the five most popular, most viral videos from the show's inaugural season.
1. Feisty Grandmas
Harvey sits down on the couch with 98-year-old Gramma and 103-year-old Ginga, sisters and best pals from West Virginia, who dish the dirt on each other and everyone else around them in a four-minute tour de force of feistiness sprinkled with filthy language that keeps the show's censors on high alert. From complaining about flying coach class to Hollywood (the host promises them first-class tickets home) to gauging their chances with Harvey, the duo are clearly close buds, though it's sometimes hard to tell as they jab and poke at one another. When Harvey asks if they like being together so much, they respond in unison: "Noooooooo!" Don't believe it.
2. Oldest bodybuilder
Ernestine Shepherd holds the record as the oldest competitive bodybuilder in the world, and the 81-year-old is still going strong. She tells Harvey that she gets up every day at 2:30 a.m. to run 10 miles, then peels off her jacket and invites the host to join her for a quick workout.
3. Fantastic gymnastics
Ninety-one-year-old German gymnast Johanna Quaas performs a dazzling display of handstands, rolls and cartwheels that would be impressive at any age, and then — get this — heads over to the parallel bars for a few eye-popping maneuvers before doing a dismount that would do Simone Biles proud. Literally — as four-time Olympic gold medalist Biles shows up to drape a Little Big Shots medal around the neck of Quaas, who started competing in gymnastics events 63 years before Biles was born.
4. Climbing to new (scary) heights
Here's something: Try climbing a pole that's as many feet high as your age. For a 2-year-old, that might be pretty easy. By the time you reach 81, we're talking dizzying heights. And 81-year-old Carla Wallenda took it even further on the show, clambering up a swaying 85-foot-high pole and then — wait for it — balancing on her head at the top of it. The fact that she's one of the world famous Flying Wallendas, with whom she has performed all her life, doesn't make it any less impressive.
5. Grandma and grandson YouTube stars
Kevin Droniak, 20, and his 87-year-old Grandma Lil became YouTube stars when Kevin started surreptitiously posting videos of their funny car rides together. She's in on the joke, too, and seems to love the attention that comes with becoming a pop culture star at 85. Their videos now have more than 45 million views on YouTube, but when Harvey asks whether they might get their own TV show, Lil's grandma instincts instantly kick in: "He's got to go to school."
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