I’ll make this as short and simple as possible.

I saw the whole thing last night. I went in wanting to hate it. I was packing a flask full of whiskey to encourage that hate. And, I’ll admit, the first bit with the drummer is the worst part of the whole thing. But, there are pull-outs from that first 7 minute segment that make you forgive it. (Namely Amy Levere in her underwear.) By the end of the second episode, you’re sold on the whole thing. Which is perfect, since the show is broken up in a way that 3 single episodes fit inside a half hour block. The first of those 5 groups will be shown tonight on MTV.

I am not the biggest Brewer fan in the world. I think Hustle and Flow was a great big screen opener, but Black Snake Moan had…issues. He shoots $5 Cover in an up-close cinema verite style, which works both for and against him. It keeps his actors, all untrained locals with the exception of Clare Grant, from over acting too much. However, there are a lot of choppy camera movements and weird compositions that come along with that style. These problems may be lessened on a smaller screen, but on a movie screen they were pretty jarring.

In a little less than two hours, Brewer does more to make Memphis look cool and interesting than any tourism board could do with a budget five times his. Of course it was a joy to see people that you’d grown up with, places that you frequent, things you’d worked on and people who you admired on screen, so it was an easy sell to this all Memphis audience. Before the lights came down, Brewer encouraged us to make noise and “act rowdy” whenever some one came on that we knew. I burst into guffawing laughter a few times when I watched one of my friends stumble by in the background, trying their damnedest to act cool.

I’m not about to tell you that this didn’t have the air of something your friends made, so you inherently love it more and cast its flaws aside. It did, and that works for it. The question that remains, though, is if that feeling can translate out to the rest of the world that didn’t already love these people and this city.

Personally, I’m hoping for an encore.

You’ll be able to find the whole thing here in a few hours. Watch it on the web. They get more money for that. And they only need this to be a moderate success for them to come back and do another round.