Monday, March 29, 2010

No Deal

In a sad turn of events, the last remnants of Deal or No Deal will soon be gone from our screens, as the syndicated version of the show will finish out its run this spring.

Quite frankly, I'm not surprised. Almost everything that was fun and thrilling about the show went out the door when NBC cancelled it two years ago... the theme shows, the $1,000,000 (and sometimes much more) top prize, the families, the luscious models, and the hope that you would be picked to be a contestant from the tens of thousands who sent their auditions (myself among them).

But the syndicated show was hugely scaled back to accomodate a half hour version. With the exception of two of the originals, no more models. 28 hopefuls now opened the cases for a week with five contestants picked out of a random spin of a big roulette wheel (nuts to you if you were one of the five reserves who didn't get to play until the Friday taping), the top prize was only $500,000, no themes, no families... and as shallow as the show was on network TV, the syndicated version was even more so. The excitement was gone. I could speed through an episode in seconds on my DVR, depending on how soon the contestant had opened the top three prizes.

Sad to see it go, and on such a low note. It might not have been great TV, but at its best, it kept you glued to your seat.

So I guess Howie Mandel will be going back to putting rubber gloves over his head.

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