Saturday, May 21, 2011

EXTRA! EXTRA! Read All About It: Game Show News Updates (Part 4)

In this week's article, I'm going to once again spotlight some of the headlines that has peaked my interest this month concerning game show news. From the upcoming Daytime Emmys to Ben Bailey’s stand-up special, I'm sure you are going to enjoy reading about what has happened or what's in store for the future in the world game shows. Enjoy!

The 2011 Daytime Emmy Awards
Well folks, it’s that time of the year again where the best talk shows, soap operas and game shows are honored: The 38th Annual Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards. This event will be broadcasted from the Las Vegas Hilton on June 19th on CBS.  This year’s host will be actor, singer, and Let’s Make a Deal host Wayne Brady. Some of the nominees for this year’s Daytime Emmy Awards include The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Dr. Phil, and Good Morning America. But, since this is The Blog Is Right, I am going to spotlight the game show nominees. The nominees for “Outstanding Game/Audience Participation Show” are Cash Cab, Jeopardy!, The Price Is Right, and Wheel of Fortune. On a quick side note, I am a little bit surprised that Millionaire wasn’t a nominee in this category because of the change in the game’s format. 

Role Reversal: Pat Sajak and Alex Trebek trade their
hosting duties for a day in honor of April Fool's Day.
The nominees for “Outstanding Game Show Host” are Cash Cab host Ben Bailey, Family Game Night host Todd Newton, Let’s Make a Deal host Wayne Brady, and Millionaire host Meredith Vieira. This year’s Daytime Emmy Awards will also be a memorable one for Pat Sajak and Alex Trebek as they will be honored with Lifetime Achievement Awards. Pat Sajak has hosted Wheel of Fortune since 1981 and has won three Emmy Awards (1993, 1997, 1998) for hosting Wheel. Alex Trebek is also no stranger when it comes to game shows as well as he has hosted 16 game shows including High Rollers (shown below), Classic Concentration, Battlestars, and  America’s favorite quiz show Jeopardy! Other Lifetime Achievement Award recipients include Regis Philbin, Sesame Street “Muppetteer” Caroll Spinney, and Bravo network’s Inside the Actor’s Studio host James Lipton. Will Cash Cab win its fourth Daytime Emmy in a row for “Best Game Show”? Will Todd Newton win an Emmy for hosting Family Game Night on the Hub? There’s only one way to find and that is by tuning in to the Daytime Emmys airing June 19th on CBS. 

Ben Bailey's Stand-Up Special Road Rage

Cash Cab and Daytime Emmy Award winning host Ben Bailey is the star in his new stand-up comedy special Road Rage. From nature to Google to old clich├ęd sayings, Ben Bailey covers a wide variety of topics as he speaks his mind in this one-hour comedy special. I have had privilege of previewing his special and I was entertained and laughing throughout the entire show as he takes you on a journey through some of his life experiences, including his experiences on Cash Cab. His observational comedy reminds me the comedy stylings of Jerry Seinfeld and his stand-up routine. On a quick side note, before knew about this comedy special, I didn't even know that Ben Bailey had been doing stand-up comedy for 17 years. Make sure you tune in to Ben Bailey's comedy special Road Rage premiering tonight at 11:30 EST on Comedy Central! Ben Bailey: Road Rage and Accidental Ornithology will be released on DVD on May 31. Pre-order your copy today at!

**Breaking News**: Ben Bailey will be hosting NBC's new high-stakes game show Who's Still Standing? This show, which slightly resembles GSN's Russian Roulette, pits one contestant against ten others in a series a quizzes. The winner stays in the game while the loser drops through a hole in the floor. Like on 1 vs. 100, if the one contestant can eliminate all of their opponents, they will win $1,000,000.  

Pawn Games 
On May 12, 2011, Viacom’s website released a press release concerning Spike TV’s new line up of unscripted pilots to add to their current slate of new original programming, including Auction Hunters and Repo Games. "Each pilot showcases real, genuine men immersed in situations where the stakes are truly significant," said Sharon Levy, executive vice president, original series, Spike TV. "We are thrilled to partner with some of the brightest minds in the industry to unearth some of these larger-than-life characters."(1) One of the non-scripted shows that have already made a pilot for the network is a new game show called Pawn Games. Like Repo Games, this show gives unsuspecting people a chance to win back their possessions they traded away for a quick buck by playing in a series of challenges and quizzes using the items in a pawn shop. Staying true to its title like Cash Cab taking place is a cab, the show is filmed in a pawn shop. Pawn Games is produced by 495 Productions, the same creative minds behind Jersey Shore and Repo Games, and Sally Ann Salsano is the show’s executive producer. I haven’t seen or heard anything yet about the show’s host or debut date, but I will make sure to keep you informed.  

The X Factor
As you all might have heard by now, the UK hit talent show The X Factor has already made its way to the USA and will premiere this fall on FOX. The show has held its auditions in Los Angeles, Seattle, Chicago, New York City, Newark, and Miami. The X Factor’s judges’ last stop for auditions will be in Dallas, TX on May 26. The hosts of The X Factor will be lead singer of the Pussycat Dolls Nicole Scherzinger, and British TV host Steve Jones. “These two are going to be great together,” said Simon Cowell. “I have always wanted Steve to work with us; I think he is a real star. Nicole is fantastic. I loved working with her on the U.K. ‘X Factor’ last year. She is gorgeous and super-talented.”(2)  The judges selected for the show are Cheryl Cole, former Idol judge and host of Live To Dance Paula Abdul, Antonio “L.A.” Reid, and the show’s executive producer Simon Cowell. Tens of thousands of people auditioned for the show from around of the world. But like all talent competition reality show, there can only be one winner; the one who possess “The X Factor”. The winner of the talent competition will receive a Sony/Syco Music contract worth $5 million. It will be interesting to find out how The X Factor will fare against the already popular American Idol and NBC’s The Voice. Watch for the U.S. premiere of The X Factor coming in September 2011. 

Comfort Inn's "Family Feud" Contest
Comfort Inn Suites has teamed up with Family Feud is currently holding a contest where you and nine of your friends and family members could win a trip to Atlanta, Georgia. This $12,000+ grand prize vacation package includes airfare and ground transportation for ten provided, three nights’ accommodations at a Comfort Inn hotel, ten day passes to Six Flags Over Georgia, tickets to see a live taping of Family Feud, and last (but not least), $3,000 in spending money. Several first prize winners will receive a Kodak HD Video Camera.  You can enter the contest for free by clicking here. The contest ends July 15, 2011. 

NBC's Fall 2011 Schedule
NBC's  The Sing-Off
NBC unveiled their fall 2011 schedule this past Sunday. Three programs that will be returning during the fall and winter seasons will be The Voice, Celebrity Apprentice, and The Sing-Off. There are two things that surprised me about the new NBC schedule: The Sing-Off moving from a winter staple to part of the fall scheduling and Minute To Win It not returning this fall. When I first heard about and after I had seen a few episodes of The Sing-Off when it first premiered, I immediately thought the show was an American Idol rip-off and didn’t think twice about it as I thought the show was going to be cancelled after the first season. It seems like since The X Factor is in the picture, NBC wants to give FOX a run for their money with their “a cappella-driven” talent show. I am not surprised that Minute To Win It isn’t coming back for the fall season because of all the new episodes NBC is currently airing this summer, but I wouldn’t be too surprised if the show comes back for another Christmas themed show. 

101 Ways to Leave a Game Show & Pyramid
101 Ways to Leave a Game Show 
host Jeff Stuphen 
Premiering June 21 at 9pm EST on ABC is the new game show 101 Ways To Leave a Game Show, based on the U.K. series of the same name. This show will take Downfall’s place and will be included in ABC’s summer lineup alongside the summer edition of Wipeout. This trivia game show with a twist offers a $50,000 cash prize and more creative ways for contestants to the eliminated from the show (like Russian Roulette and Who’s Still Standing), such as being tied to a speedboat and yanked off a dock or being tied to a helicopter and being yanked of a building. 

Here’s the promo for the new series: 

Jeff Stuphen, the host of Nickelodeon’s BrainSurge, will be the host of this show and from what I have seen from the promo, he is going to do a great job with this show. Hopefully, this show will receive more positive feedback than last year's ABC summer game show Downfall (even though Downfall was wrongfully pulled, in my opinion).  

It seems like Pyramid has once again reared in its head, after its pilot was picked up and dropped by CBS. TBS is looking to pick up the show with Andy Richter as the host. The show was originally going to be headlined as a million-dollar game show, but since the show is moving to cable television, the grand prize will be considerably lower.  I hope TBS picks up Pyramid, but I don’t have much faith in the network picking up the show as they have shot a pilot episode of Match Game that didn’t go anywhere. I also hope that this Pyramid revival will be better than the Osmond version and stay true to its original roots from the 70’s/80’s version.

GSN's Latest News
The new Lingo logo for the new season.
Looks nice, doesn't it?
June 6 marks the premiere of a new season of Lingo and Baggage. After a four-year absence of new episodes, GSN decided to bring back the once popular word game, Lingo, for an all new season. “We have instilled a lot of changes in Lingo. These people have taken it to a whole new level,”(3) said Bill Engvall, the new host of the show. “The biggest change is they could walk out of here with $100,000”, which is a huge change considering the top prize was at one time $10,000 during the show’s fourth season. Other major changes in the show include the set (which looks a lot like the set on Baggage), host, scoring system, bonus round, and the elimination of the co-host. But before you see the sixth season debut of Lingo at 8:00pm EST, the third season of GSN’s new hit dating game show Baggage will premiere at 7:30pm EST on the same day.  

1- “Spike TV Presents New Slate of Non-Scripted Shows”

2- “Nicole Scherzinger and Steve Jones to Host The X FACTOR”
3- “Behind the Scenes: The New Lingo”
**All screenshots have been searched on Google Images. The Trebek/Sajak picture included screenshots from episodes of Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune. No ownership is implied.**  

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