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The Complete Prat's Guide to Surviving the Priceless Summer - June 14

As I type this, an estimated 12 million people in the US and Canada (and even more worldwide) either would have watched or are getting ready to watch Bob Barker step through door #2 for the final time (or not, but for the sake of argument, let’s just assume that this is it). It’s an event that has been eight months in the making, something we have all been both anticipating and dreading.


And now that the summer is almost upon us, we’re left with one lingering question. Who on earth could possibly replace someone who, in 35 years, has surpassed legendary status and has become, in the eyes of many, the face of a genre?


Well, we COULD answer that… but we’re not that concerned with that as much as we are concerned with how YOU are going to take it. Besides, there’s time to dwell on the “ideal candidate” later. Next week good for you? Fine. I’ll see you then.


Meanwhile, the names of those who many believe are worthy of a CHANCE at inheriting the mantle of an industry, the design of three-and-a-half decades are etched on a white board somewhere in the depths of CBS. And one by one, those names are being wiped clean off. And I bet it’s just making you crazy thinking about the whole damn thing.


So just for this special instance, we’re just going to forget things like ratings and share points (besides, this summer, with one or two exceptions, has been pretty lackluster) and just try and have some fun. We need some fun once in a while.


So here now, I present the Complete Prat’s Guide to Surviving the Priceless Summer (or, “how I learned to stop worrying and love the thrill of the hunt for a change”)


1)   Remember, there is one… and only one… Bob Barker. It helps to know that CBS has the show’s best interest at heart. Do you honestly think that it would go through this much rigmarole if it didn’t? They’re not looking for Bob Barker’s identical twin brother. Were that the case, CBS would’ve had a secret lab somewhere underneath the depths of Television City where they were perfecting the cloning process using strands of hair acquired off of Bob by Mira Wilder. Either Travis S. doesn’t know anything about it or he’s not talking. Either way, it’s a done deal. Bob Barker is truly one of a kind. We don’t need another one.

2)   Another thing to remember if you’re one of those who believe that no one but Bob can host the show without screwing it up... somewhere out there in archives of ARPAnet in 1972 there surely must be rants complaining that “this new guy is alright, but he’s no Bill Cullen.”

3)   When conducting debates on who should be the new host, follow the old reliable gambit: don’t prove the other guy wrong, prove that you’re right. This is the absolute worst time to look like a crumbling deprecating mark. And for God’s sake, don’t mention Kevin Federline. Everything he touches turns to crap. Case in point: Britney Spears.

4)   Remember that these guys are up on stage trying for a coveted position which has since been marginalized by a global leader in the medium that is trying its damnedest to balance currency with familiarity, a famous face with an even more famous format… which is more than what you or I ever did.

5)   Put this Doctor Who quote in your thought bank and treasure it… “You think it’ll last forever… people and cars and concrete. Then one day, it’s all gone. Even the sky.” We all knew that we were closer to the end of Bob’s career than we were to the beginning. We all saw it coming. Too late to whine about it now. Put on your big girl panties and get over it.

6)   When all is said and done, chances are your favorite, whoever he may be, will be told, “Thanks, but no thanks.” That’s okay. I wasn’t the biggest Rich Fields fan when he started on TPIR. I was personally jocking for Burton Richardson to become announcer #3. But he grew on me. He proved that he was more than capable of stepping into Rod Roddy’s shoes (thank goodness he didn’t step into his wardrobe. That would’ve been a bit of a problem).  The point is, if whoever does a good job, you’ll appreciate it that much more.

7)   Paraphrasing Bill McDonald, “Even bad TPIR is better than no TPIR.” I shudder at such a prospect. That said…

8)   Pray that Rosie O’Donnell isn’t taken seriously. You don't make the show. The show makes you.


There you have it. Eight simple rules for getting over the summer. See how long you can go without breaking three of them. OR, better idea, share some of your own. Seriously, I want to hear your survival tips. How are you getting through the Priceless summer?


You know where to reach me.

Chico Alexander has some tips for the host-to-be-named next week. In the meantime, e-mail your priceless tips to


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