The first season of Teachers, TV Land’s hilarious comedy series, earned an A with The Hollywood Reporter’s chief TV critic Tim Goodman, who ranked it among the best television of 2016. It made LA Weekly‘s Best TV of 2016 list as well.
Why the high grade? Let’s hear more from the critics.
Viacom’s Employee Events & Programs sent Jim Chrisman and his wife Courtney Chrisman to see VH1’s Divas Holiday: Unsilent Night live at the King’s Theatre in Brooklyn, New York on Monday, Dec. 5 2016. Photo courtesy of Jim Chrisman.
The holiday festivities began early for Viacom employee Jim Chrisman, a manager in our financial reporting group. Chrisman got to treat his wife to a once-in-a-lifetime seasonal surprise when he won tickets to VH1’s Divas Holiday: Unsilent Night, courtesy of Employee Events and Programs’ employee sweepstakes. The couple enjoyed special live performances by Mariah Carey, JoJo, Bebe Rexha, Teyana Taylor, Vanessa Williams, Patti LaBelle, Chaka Khan, and more. Below, Chrisman tells us a bit about how Viacom and VH1 made this holiday season particularly magical.
Jules (Eliza Bennett) and Ophelia (Taylor Dearden) are the superheroes you wish you knew in college. Photo courtesy of MTV.
Imagine a picturesque college campus, complete with stately sorority houses and a lush quad. One of these sororities is home to Jules (Eliza Bennett), a timid blonde with a penchant for pearls. Ophelia (Taylor Dearden) is a green-haired, computer-hacking anarchist who works at a record store and sells pot. These girls exist in opposite realms of their university’s social strata, yet bond over a furtive mission.
Unlikely duos, college shenanigans, and secrets: All elements of a classic, coming-of-age dramedy. But MTV’s latest series Sweet/Vicious defies labels or tropes. Ophelia may be an anarchist drug dealer, but she’s also the campus tutor. Jules exudes school spirit and good behavior, yet moonlights as a vigilante. Like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles keep New York City safe from Shredder and his evil cronies, Ophelia and Jules band together to keep their fellow students safe from villains—specifically campus rapists.
On Nov. 8, 2016, Viacom employees got the chance to open their eyes to the most important issues of this election season—through an incandescent virtual reality (VR) art show at Viacom Headquarters.
One of the VR works presented on Nov. 8 2016 about gender equality. Photo courtesy of MTV Elect This and Gumshoe
MTV’s Elect This campaign promised its audience substance over scandal. It succeeded in highlighting issues that matter most to their millennial audience such as climate change, social justice, national security, immigration, and health care— in a stunning marriage of innovation and artistry.
Spike’s hit series, Ink Masters, is the ultimate test of endurance, creativity, and talent. Each week, tattoo artists compete to win $100,000 and the coveted crown of Ink Master. They’re challenged to deviate from their traditional style, tattooing live on brave volunteers otherwise known as “human canvasses.” The season culminates with a sensational finale that includes a grueling 24-hour tattoo session, live voting via Twitter, and plenty of audience commentary.
Viacom’s employee lottery series brought tattoo enthusiast and longtime Ink Master fan Michele Graczyk to the season eight finale on Tuesday, Dec. 6. She watched as Ryan Ashley Malarkey became the first female Ink Master in Spike history.
Michele Graczyk attended Spike’s Ink Master live finale. Photo courtesy of Graczyk.
In the fall of 2010, Viacom’s Office of Global Inclusion started a new tradition—a holiday party that would bring employees together to celebrate the season of giving, by giving back to those in need.
Give Back & Get Down (GBGD) is the brainchild of Nickelodeon Digital Publishing Executive Assistant Tara Shaw and BET News Production Manager Renee Jackson, leaders of the BEAT (our employee resource group focused on the African-American experience).
The inaugural celebration supported two vital causes.
City Harvest, the only food rescue program in New York City, collects excess food from restaurants and grocery stores—fresh, nutritious food that would otherwise be thrown out. Volunteers deliver this food to homeless shelters, soup kitchens, day cares and senior centers throughout the five boroughs.
Pajama Program, a national nonprofit, helps underprivileged children have a good night’s sleep. Cozy pajamas and bedtime story books are brought to kids in foster care or temporary shelters
Employees brought donations of pajamas and food to the party. While OGI members collected these items, Grammy-winning artist Miguel performed.
Seven years later, GBGD is our annual giving celebration. It embraces the Viacommunity spirit of making a positive social impact in areas where we work and live, and gives employees at premier entertainment brands the chance to let loose and celebrate a year of hard work.
Viacom has collected approximately 60 tons of donations since 2010.
This year, we’ve partnered with Safe Horizons and Sanctuary for Families to support families and individuals impacted by domestic violence. GBGD VII is rapidly approaching, and donation boxes in our New York offices are filling up with toiletries.
Check back for a recap of GBGD VII on Dec. 7.
OGI Assistant Sarah Lee contributed to this article.