With all the love, squabbling, self-sacrifice and rivalry found in any family, a group of meerkats struggles to survive in Africa's Kalahari Desert. Animal Planet's new 13-part series, Meerkat Manor, is All My Children meets Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom. Don't let their cuddly appearance fool you though — there's a good reason these meerkat families are called a "mob."
Narrated by Sean Astin of The Lord of the Rings and 24, Meerkat Manor was filmed with the assistance of Cambridge University, which is conducting a 10-year study on meerkats. From family quarrels to love affairs to backstabbing worthy of a Shakespearean tale, these fuzzy reality-TV stars pack a huge dramatic punch.
With cameras recording their every move, Meerkat Manor introduces viewers to the Whiskers, a family of meerkats, revealing their personalities over the course of the series. Researchers call the Whiskers' matriarch "Flower," but she's neither delicate nor sweet — she doesn't let anyone boss her around! Putting her newborn pups before all others, Flower isn't afraid of conflict and will stop at nothing to get her way.
Zaphod, the patriarch, defends the Whiskers at all costs — especially against the rival gang of meerkats, the Lazuli. Zaphod seizes control of the family by overthrowing his brother and taking Flower as his own mate. It's Hamlet, only hairier.
But not all of the meerkats are fighters. A true hero, a meerkat called "Shakespeare," suffers a poisonous snakebite and rescues his brother from certain death. Carlos, a male from the rival Lazuli mob, finds himself in deep trouble when he woos three of the Whiskers' leading ladies.