Thursday, February 20, 2014

Tune-In Tonight: "Killer Karaoke" Resumes First Season With New Host and Format

After taking a year hiatus during its first season, the insanity that is Killer Karaoke returns to truTV this evening at 10:00pm EST with a brand new episode, a new host, crazier and more bizarre singing challenges and a slightly altered format. TruTV gifted viewers with a special treat by allowing them to watch the complete first episode of the return of Killer Karaoke via the network's YouTube channel two days in advance. The revamped version of the show features former host of the syndicated version of Don't Forget The Lyrics, Mark McGrath, and a different format. Each episode of Killer Karaoke will now have six contestants competing in a series of five rounds, a revised performance scoring system for each contestant (audience vote + technical vote [lyrical accuracy and pitch]), the top ranking contestant in the first round receiving a bye through the next two battle rounds, more audience participation and a new bonus round. In the new and improved bonus round, the final two contestants will have to wear a suit covered with varying individual bills adding up to $10,000 and walk through a dangerous obstacle course specially designed for the contestants to purposefully shed money. And that's not even the worst part -- after both contestants have maneuvered through their respective courses, a box will be lowered over their head, forcing each contestant to literally face their greatest fears. The contestant with the highest audience and technical score at the end of the round will be the champion and will win the remaining money attached to them. On a quick side note, I believe the producers of this show were a bit inspired by the "Money Tree" game on Name That Tune to create the new bonus round. Listed below is a more detailed rundown of new format for Killer Karaoke:

(6 remaining) Qualifying Round (All 6; #1 gets 2-round bye; 1 eliminated)
(5 remaining) Battle Round 1 (1 vs. 1; 1 sent to Loser's Zone)
(5 remaining) Battle Round 2 (1 vs. 1; 1 sent to Loser's Zone)
(5 remaining) Audience Vote (Audience vote on Loser's Zone contestant to advance to Round 3; 1 eliminated)
(4 remaining) Battle Round 3 (#1 seed vs. a Loser's Zone contestant; 1 eliminated)
(3 remaining) Audience Vote (Top 2 contestants with highest audience votes advances to next round; 1 eliminated)
(2 remaining) Final Round: "Money Suit" (1 vs. 1; contestant with higher overall performance score wins game and cash)

The format itself is an upgrade to keep the home viewing audience interested for the full hour with the show's use of the seeding system and having all six contestants compete for nearly the entire show.
However, the show does manage to ripoff Spell-Mageddon with the inclusion of the "Loser's Zone", the "microphone water spray" stunt used in the first round of this episode, an audience vote to decide which eliminated contestant should stay in the game. Other great improvements include the judges keeping a better track of contestants accuracy with the lyrics and enforcing one of the show's taglines, "Whatever happens, don't stop singing", rather than allowing them to mumble and fumble their way through songs just to get by and the addition of more insane, sadistic and messier challenges, especially in the final round. As host, Mark McGrath is a decent emcee for this show, but I still think that Steve-O should have remained the frontrunner for Killer Karaoke, given his background in participating in ridiculously dangerous stunts.

If you haven't seen it already, check out the full episode in the video below or stay tuned for the return of Killer Karaoke tonight at 10:00pm EST on truTV.

On a quick end note, I'm not sure why this show is being billed as the second season premiere, when in actually, this episode is considered part of the current first season in progress according to TV By The Numbers and The Futon Critic.

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