January 7, 2008

Carb counting the death of game shows and the family board game associated with them (double dare)

That was then

This is now

Tonight an old addiction has returned after 12 years. We all thought over playing it in syndication would kill it for good, but American Gladiators is back with a new look. Being a fan of the old show, watching it every day over the summer while I devoured my lunch my mother prepared for me in the morning, I was eagerly awaiting tonight. I wanted to look past the idea of Hulk Hogan hosting it. I would have much rather had a nobody make his or her face known through the show, like Mike Adamle.

I look at the premiere of the show tonight, and I think it is a metaphor for a lot of things in society. The original show was a game show. There was no tricky pyrotechnics, or suspect of steroids floating around the arena. The original was content, and not flash.

While I was watching the new version tonight, I realized the gameshow is completely dead. The camera angels were too flashy, quick, and deceiving. I found myself frustrated with the TV, I wanted to see the entire Joust in a wide-angle shot. I didn't care about the fast cuts that made me think I was watching a scripted storyboard shot in front of a live studio audience.

I suppose that is where the media is going. Better technology, more cameras, better thought out branding for each show. People want to see drama, people want to be put in the middle of a bone crushing tackle. The content isn't enough. People want Peter Jackson's King Kong, not the boring simple 1976 version. I suppose we should just forget every old version, and embrace all the new and improve ones. They are the blockbusters are today's America after all.

Is there even any truth to these shows? I keep hearing there is going to be more reality television shows now that the writers are on strike. Is it true you don't need writers for all these dramatic showcases of supposed real life? To me all these reality television shows seem just as scripted and story boarded as all the sitcoms they have replaced. That lovely cheering live studio audience isn't even what it seems to be. The most genuine part of the show, the people who bought tickets to be entertained in person while we watched it on our idiot boxes, well . . . those people are hired extras. No different than the hundreds of people you see running of the terrorist attacks on 24. This was a shocking discovery (if this happens to be true, but I believe it after witnessing the excessive amount of cheering the audience did that was prominently shown on the telly) when I found this video.

Just as the new American Gladiators is not a game show, but an infant cousin of the the WWE or WWF or whatever you call it today. I guess Hulk Hogan is the perfect host after all. Now get Laila Ali out of there. She represents something too real, boxing.


djborisyeltsin said...

hulk hogan broke the world record for most "brothers" in one sentence. while interviewing that old guy in the second episode, he fit 6 "brotherrrrs" into one sentence. congrats hulk!

Jason said...

He just loves too much.
Everyone is in his family.
Even you BROTHER!