Love it or hate it, the controversial TV show "Extreme Couponing" has spawned a spin-off series scheduled to debut next week.
"Extreme Couponing All-Stars" will air at 10 p.m. Dec. 27 on the TLC network. It will be the first show in a seven-part series.
If it's anything like the original show, "All-Stars" is likely to feature over-the-top coupon shoppers loading multiple grocery carts to over-flowing, then paying pennies on the dollar after redeeming hundreds coupons.
According to Entertainment Weekly's Inside TV blog:
The new series will feature 12 super couponers in competition to buy the most groceries in a set amount of time.
During each show, two shoppers will compete to purchase at least $500 in groceries during a 30-minute shopping trip. The shopper with the highest percentage of savings wins the competition. Paying full price is not permitted. All the groceries will be donated to charity. The finale will show three couponers "battling it out" in one supermarket.
Click here to watch a promotional video clip of the series.
It does not appear any North Carolina shoppers will be involved in the new series.
Lowes Foods spokeswoman Lisa Selip said the chain declined an invitation to be a part of the new show.
In the just-concluded "Extreme Couponing" series, two N.C. women -- one from Concord and the other from Snow Camp -- were shown redeeming hundreds of coupons during multiple shopping trips at Lowes Foods stores near their homes.
The Winston Salem-based Lowes Foods, which suspended its coupon policy for the taping of the shows, has said it regretted participating in the series, saying it was full of misrepresentations and sensationalism.
Since its inception, the TV series has spawned accusations of coupon fraud and prompted retailers to tighten coupon policies. The show has also been blamed for a spike in theft of Sunday newspapers but also credited with boosting Sunday newspaper sales.
On top of the spin-off, two "Extreme Couponing" specials are in the works documenting the savings on Black Friday and the day after Christmas, according to Entertainment Weekly.