First, is the reality-based competition show, Wipeout. I knew from just looking at the previews, that I would not like this show so much. Well, I saw a whole episode, and I had no idea how terrible it was.
The Good Point(s): The courses are challenging and easy to look at. Now, I am partial to "American Gladiators", but they did do their homework on these things. I had to add the parenthesis to the 's' because I realized this was it.
The Bad Stuff: Where do I begin? Ok, I will begin with the main problem of the show. Casting. As with any game show, we have overconfident pigs who think they can tackle any little challenge ahead of them, which leads to my second point. The challenges are either meant for 1) Humiliation or 2) Exhaustion, with the latter being way too incomfortable to watch in my opinion. One guy nearly collapsed, and I had to look away, because I felt the exhaustion coming from my tv (another reason why I am GLAD there is no "smell-o-vision").
The third problem is in relation to the first one, except it is the announcer dudes. Now, I saw a segment on Infomania on Spike TV, and these guys should belong there. They are loud, rude, and crude. They belittle anyone when they get the chance, they act like the LOVE watching these people struggle (Ok, I will throw them a bone as they showed sympathy a couple of times, but just with frat guys), and they totally ruined the viewing experience for me. I would rather hear Sonic and Ike have a converation only consisting of "You're too slow" and "I fight for my friends" for an hour than watch this crap. That is why I give it the Allengator Seal of FAIL.
Now for I Survived a Japanese Game Show (which I will abbreviate ISAJGS from here on out). I admit, I was super stoked for this show, which is why I was probably let down. But this show has more redeeming qualities than Wipeout did.
The Good Points: These are honestly true Japanese game shows, and they are just scratching the tip of the iceburg with this genre. They are from the insane (emulating bugs being splattered on a window), to the weird (a human becoming a crane in a crane game). Also, this show showcases Japanese culture. Tonight's episode featured a Pachinko parlor and a Tokyo Spa, which is NOTHING like the American ones. The host and audience are overly enthusiastic, but that is the Japanese way. They would get a kick out of the Sonic and Ike conversation that was mentioned earlier. You also have to give credit to the contestants for going out there and, for the sake of keeping up with stereotypes, act like a bunch of morons, as most gaijan do in front of the Japanese. All in all, an excellent premise.
The Bad Stuff: There is one major thing that does ruin this show though. It is sad, really. While Wipeout is a round of new contestants every week, ISAJGS is a reality-based competition in the "let's keep the same people on and eliminate them one at a time" type. Now, Survivor and The Amazing Race have done it right. I would have no qualms if the elimination process was like The Amazing Race, based purely on skill and luck than anything. If they would have had all of these people compete, and the last person to win had to go home, then this show would be good. Unfortunately, it does not.
Remember way back when, when I ranted on the reality-based competition, and talking it down because it looked more like a cinematic movie than a reality show? Ok, now add a Japanese element to this. It is like mixing the Price is Right with Big Brother, where people choose two people to fight it out of their own team, and one of them gets eliminated. That process boggles me as the worst idea of eliminating some, ever! Sure, on Survivor, they ALWAYS make it look like its between two or more people, but then you add the "20 somethings living in the same house, humping each other" element, and it gets to a whole other lever of uncomfortable. It also makes for "tension" which, on a GMAESHOW, I think, is a unecessary element. I mean, these people are playing for money, sure, but tension within their own group? They could have executed this MUCH better.
All in all, I won't give it a complete the Allengator's Seal of FAIL, but it is close. I would love to see it go on for a while and Wipeout to do what it namesake says.
So one FAIL, and one partial FAIL. Not a good time to be a tv show.
I also saw a show being advertised as "Opportunity Knocks". Looks like another stinker.
Then again, even worse is the "Next High School Musical Singer" competition. I almost feel like protesting that show, but it is not even remotely close to being worth my effort. I hope it burns in the fires of diablo along with Wipeout.
No wonder why I sprang for some new DVDs last night.