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Internet Hero Zach Anner is Getting Back on the Road With 'Riding Shotgun'

by Photo of Hannah Rettoun

No obstacle is too big, no mountain is too high, no volcano is too hot, and no Atlantis is too underwater or fictional.

Internet Hero Zach Anner is Getting Back on the Road With 'Riding Shotgun'

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Back in 2010, Zach Anner auditioned for (and won)Your OWN Show, Oprah's search for the next TV star.  With huge support from the interweb and celebrities alike, Anner gained more than 2 million votes, essentially obliterating the competition. Rollin' With Zach premiered Dec. 12, 2011 and was cancelled six episodes later (apparently internet lurkers don't watch TV). Now Zach is back and ready for action with his new Reddit-fueled web series, Riding Shotgun

To really get a sense of the man himself, you should, nay, MUST watch his audition tape for Your OWN Show

Perhaps now you can understand why the internet loves him so much.  John Mayer even went so far as to write the theme song for Rollin' With Zach.  Anner has happily reunited with the internet to launch Riding Shotgun.  The premise of his new show is to let the people who helped him win Your OWN Show choose where he will travel to and what he will do when he gets there. 

Until July 23, you can go on Reddit and suggest or vote for the locations you think Zach should go to. Along with his team (Brad, Aaron and Josh), Zach will visit eight cities in six weeks, living out the "perfect day" in each location.  Top picks are currently New Orleans, Vancouver, Montreal, Denver, Portland and San Francisco.  

This week, Zach allowed Reddit to ask him anything, and I learned a little bit more about this wheelchaired Magellan. Much of the Reddit community was interested in Zach's childhood and living with cerebral palsy.    

He said he was always optimistic growing up, and that having CP made him appreciate things he might otherwise have ignored.  "If I wasn't in a wheelchair, I think I'd take a lot of cool stuff for granted."

Many commenters told him about their children with CP or similar conditions who were inspired by his show. He gave them some beautiful advice. 

"Nurture your son's interests and passions rather than his disability. There will be a lot of hurdles and prejudice you'll have to overcome as a family as a result of the disability, but as long as you see your son as the unique individual he is, you'll never haver to worry about him confusing disability with identity."

Most of the other commenters wanted to know why Rollin' With Zach didn't work out. Ratings were what killed it, but maybe it was for the best. 

One Redditor asked if the episodes that aired represented his vision for the show, and the short answer was no. Anner said that everyone involved in the show wanted to make it the best for the network, and that wasn't always what he envisioned.  "It was definitely always a balance of trying to keep humor and my genuine self in there." 

No matter what happened behind the scenes, Anner is always singing the network's praises, gracious as ever for giving him a chance.  

Zach and the gang will hit the road July 30. Don't miss their adventures on Youtube!

Let CHARGED.fm get you tickets to see your favorite comedians this summer. 


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