Where to Draw the Line
Last week, Joseph Doulson slipped
through the ranks of the 300-plus hopefuls who queue up at Beverly and
Fairfax for their chance to be one of the nine contestants on an episode
of The Price is Right. Whatever Stan looks for in his contestants,
Joseph managed to hide his real intent long enough to get a spot at the
top of the show.
Once on the show, Joseph unraveled his plan. He had no desire to
actually play the game; if one of his bids won the round, I'm sure he
would be happy, but Joseph was more intent on capering and bidding
things ending in -69 and -420. The capper of the day was his $2 million
bid for a kitchen island.
The madness ended after the sixth one-bid, and sanity once again took
hold of the world. Joseph made the rounds on youtube.com, which is worth
more to him than the various parting gifts that the three also-rans
Within hours, the discussion threads and youtube.com comments were off
and running. The reaction was almost universally negative. Joseph's act
was uncovered, and many complained that the spot in Contestant's Row
would have been better served by someone who wanted to play the game for
Throughout all of that, one known contrarian seemed to be enjoying
the proceedings, and I suspect he cheered with every bid of $420. His
basic thesis was that we were all taking the show far too seriously, and
any reaction at all was an overreaction.
I know there are some people out there who do put too much energy into
their fandom. I try to keep it as a hobby and nothing more. But to say
that we should just let Joseph do his thing without saying anything is
silly. After all, that's the point of my soapbox here. I admit it: I get
into game shows. I cheer for bonus round wins, wince at bad answers and
missed opportunities, the same as I do for my local sports teams.
Good game shows draw out that sort of reaction, good or bad. To deny
people of that full experience is wrong on every level.
Travis Eberle can be reached at
whether you like it or not.