‘Pooch Perfect’ Features Cute Dogs, Rebel Wilson’s Wit

Rebel Wilson, Pooch Perfect
(Image credit: ABC)

Pooch Perfect, a competition series involving dog grooming, starts on ABC March 30. Rebel Wilson hosts and Lisa Vanderpump, Jorge Bendersky and Dr. Callie Harris are the judges. 

Wilson is perhaps best known for playing Fat Amy in the Pitch Perfect movie franchise that inspired the title of the dog show. 

Wilson lost 60 pounds last year. 

The series showcases the best pet stylists in the country. Each episode features the Immunity Puppertunity and the Ultimutt Challenge Showdown. One team will be eliminated each week, until one is left to fetch the Pooch Perfect trophy and cash prize. 

An Australian, Wilson comes from a long lineage of dog-show participants, she said during the TCA winter press tour. “My great-grandmother started The Beagle Club of Australia, and every weekend of my childhood up until I was, like, old enough to stay at home by myself, I was going to dog shows,” she said, adding how the family traveled around Australia in a “little yellow caravan,” selling grooming products. “So dogs have just been such a huge part of my life.”

Wilson’s mother was “devastated” when the actress said she would not carry on the tradition. “When I told her I wasn't going to continue in the family business and try to be an international movie star, she cried,” said Wilson. “I had to tell her in a public place so she wouldn't do anything too crazy.”

Exec producer Elan Gale said all the dogs on Pooch Perfect come from homes and were tested to make sure they are cool with being groomed. “Some dogs like it more than others.  Some find it uncomfortable,” Gale said. “So we made sure we had the kind of dogs that were used to the entire process.”  

Wilson will lean on her comedy background in her hosting role. “I do try to bring the comedy in the show, which not a lot of hosts are, like, trying to be behind the scenes, working out jokes,” she said. “But, for me, I thought, with my skill set, I'm going to try to bring the comedy.”

Vanderpump said the humans on the show are almost as fun to watch as the dogs. “It really gets deep emotionally,” she said. “We saw so many incredible personal stories of what people have been through. It was as much a story about people, and I think you get so invested in them.”

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.