Whatever you may think of Sarah Palin, the fact remains Alaska is magnificent with her as its presenter.
Palin also is a wife, a mother of five and a grandmother, of course, and her new series integrates her home life with Alaska's great outdoors.
Judging from the first of eight episodes, "Sarah Palin's Alaska" keeps politics out of the picture. Sure, the show is effective in selling the Palin brand. But along the way, Palin throws herself into selling the grandeur of Alaska.
The much-anticipated documentary series, shot last summer, is based at Palin's lakeside home in Wasilla. There, cupcakes are baked and kids do their chores (or hear about it from Palin). Then Palin sets off, with family members in tow, on a jaunt such as salmon fishing on Big River Lake, where, almost within reach at the shoreline, a family of bears keeps them amused.
"Girls, when you cast, don't aim toward the bear," Palin cautions daughter Piper and niece McKinley in their boat.
"Why?" is the automatic comeback. Any parent will instantly relate.
Later in the program, Palin demonstrates mettle (and alarm) as she goes rock-climbing with her husband, Todd, at Denali National Park — and gets stuck midway.
The guide calls down instructions and encouragement, but Palin is stalled.
"I just don't like heights!" she declares. "I was so cocky — I'm being punished for it. I don't know if I can do this!"
It's a remarkable admission from this famously can-do personality, and, as viewers are informed, some 45 minutes pass before she figures out how to continue her ascent. Then she does it. (Continues here)