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How Would YOU Like to Shape a Major Game Show Development?

Posted 06/10/04

Small story up here, but very important that you click onward. Steve Beverly and Gordon Pepper have teamed to bring forth a survey that will help to steer the direction of an upcoming project, and they want your opinion. All you have to do is click onto the link below to get started. It won't take much of your time.

Game Show Survey

Jennings vs. Koss/Mellet

Posted 07/09/04

Yesterday, Ken Jennings snapped his four-game Final slump to take away $40,000 for a 26-day take of over $820,000. Alex, at this point, has pretty much given up on the notion that Ken may surpass the $52,000 one-day record, but maybe a new challenge would befit our superchamp. What would it be? And would Leonard Koss and Oliver Mellet snap it before it even begins?

Primes: Snoop Dogg, Shannon Elizabeth, Jason Alexander, Camryn Manheim, and Kevin Nealon face Hollywood Dave on the blackjack table, while Jase puts two on the table in the Big Brother 5 Nomination Ceremony.

Full Story: Zap2it TV and Louisville Courier-Journal
GSNN Shortshots Thursday
GSNN Prime Recaps

Numbers Game: Super Tuesday Premieres Score

Posted 07/07/04

And they're off! And we're not just talking about the eleven duos of the Amazing Race or Lori Valenti here. In the primetime Numbers Game, CBS's Summer of Fun has gotten off to a rip-roaring start.

According to overnight ratings posted by, CBS averaged a 6.3/11 for the night, far better than the 5.3/9 for second place NBC. ABC was at 4.0/9, leaving FOX in fourth with a 2.7/5, The WB in fifth with a 1.8/3, and 1.5/3 for UPN in last. CBS also won among adults 18-49, earning a 4.0 rating in the important demographic.

The first hour of "Big Brother 5" did a 6.2/11 for CBS while ABC and NBC tied as a repeat of "Last Comic Standing" and episodes of "8 Simple Rules" and "I'm With Her" both averaged a 3.8/7 for the hour. At 9pm, the last half-hour of "Big Brother 5" and the first half-hour of "Amazing Race" averaged a 6.4/11 for CBS. NBC was second with the 5.2/9 for a new "Last Comic Standing."

NBC grabbed the night's final hour with a 7.1/12 for "Law & Order: SVU." The last hour of "Amazing Race" remained solid on CBS, taking a 6.5/11.

Full story: Zap2It TV

Interesting Find: Kevin & Drew Unleashed

Posted 07/07/04

First, they took the hearts of million in the first "Amazing Race". Now they're taking on the rest of world again, this time in a new Discovery Channel series.

Kevin O'Connor and Drew Feinberg, aka "The Chromedomes", have signed for a three-episode deal with the network for "Kevin and Drew Unleashed." Compared by the network to Fox's "The Simple Life", this show sends Kevin and Drew around the country as they try out new things and make new friends along the way.

The first episode, premiering this Thursday at 10pm ET, sends the guys to Florida to work on an alligator farm, where they have to harvest eggs and deal with a full-grown gator. From there, they go to New England, as work in a cranberry bog.

In episode two, airing on July 15, Kevin and Drew go to a new-age health spa in upstate New York. What seems to be a relaxing environment turns competitive. The next stop of their tour dumps them at a brewery, where they learn to make beer. But can they keep from drinking their creations?

The final episode, scheduled for July 22, sends the boys to Oklahoma, where they work as cowboys, doing such things as branding colts and riding mechanical bulls. Next stop: South Carolina, where the Frats take part in some deep-water shrimping. Finally, they head to Drew's home borough of Staten Island, where they work the field for the Staten Island Yankees.

Photo courtesy BigB TV/CBS
Full story: Reality News Online

TLC Surprisingly Announces Search for New Member

Posted 07/07/04

An episode of VH1's "Behind the Music" series stressed that there would never be another third member of the R&B group TLC, nor would there ever be another studio album of original material, all after the death of one of their own, Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes.

This was before the advent of reality competitions as par for the course on the TV landscape. But the Boston Globe is arguing that the kindest cut of all may not even come in a competition.

The announcement of TLC partnering with Fox to search for a new member surprised many when it was released last week. At this point, the show has neither a network commitment nor a premiere date, but a deal has been signed. "Far more intriguing is exactly how Watkins and Thomas went from the noble idea of never replacing the woman they've often referred to as their 'sister' to making their regrettable change of heart into a prime-time event," reports Renee Graham, who writes the Life in the Pop Lane column for the Boston Globe.

Full story: Boston Globe

Casting Begins for Third Apprentice

Posted 07/06/04

The Donald wants to fire some more people.

Even as the second season is still in filming, plans are in the works to begin casting for the third series of "The Apprentice", as NBC and Mark Burnett Productions hits Universal Hollywood with Donald Trump in tow. The auditions begin this Friday.

From Los Angeles, the auditions will sweep through the country, visiting 15 other cities. They'll go from Miami (July 16) to Boston (July 17) to Honolulu (July 17) to Salt Lake City (July 17) to Philadelphia (July 23) to San Antonio (July 23). Other stops include Chicago, Minneapolis and Jacksonville.

The second season, currently filming, will bow in September.

Full story: Zap2It/TV

These 12 Won't Be The Contender...

Posted 07/06/04

NBC has Sylvester Stallone and Sugar Ray Leonard looking for prospective pugilists. Fox has Oscar De La Hoya... and their prospective pugilists all lined up.

Ranging in age from 20 to 31, the boxers for Fox's Contender clone "The Next Great Champ" hail from seven states, with four contestants from Florida and three from California. They'll study the sweet science in an attempt to win a professional contract with De La Hoya's Golden Boy Promotions. The charismatic eight-time champion will also serve as their friend, advisor and mentor on the journey, reports

"We've found 12 talented, determined, courageous young boxers who want their chance at stardom," says De La Hoya. "We will push them to their limits to see which ones have the heart of a champion. And, for the first time, the audience will get to see the daily sacrifices and struggles, the joy and pain in the career of a young fighter. We'll show you how champions are made."

Full story: Zap2It/TV

Pax to Debut New 3-Hour Game Block Come Fall

Posted 07/05/04

Mondays through Thursdays are set to be all about game on Pax's early prime access block this fall. Not only will we see the return of "On the Cover" to augment new game "Balderdash", set to launch August 2, but we'll see the returns of reruns of George Gray's "Weakest Link" and Richard Karn's "Family Feud", as well as a new season of "Shop 'Til You Drop" and the addition of reruns of Donny Osmond's "Pyramid" in markets that do not typically air NBC local news in the 7pm block.

6pm - Weakest Link
6:30pm - Shop 'Til You Drop
7pm - Pyramid (in markets that do not air local news)
7:30pm - Family Feud
8pm - On the Cover
8:30pm - Balderdash

WLTI: Four Angry Men

Posted 07/05/04

What happens when you stick four game show fans in the same IM chatroom and go off on subjects including, but not limited to, game show hair, JD Roberto, and the downward spiral that Pax is expected to take Once Balderdash launches in August?

You get the new episode of WLTI, that's what!

We Love to Interrupt - July 4

DiGeorge: GSN's Major Mistake

Posted 07/03/04

For as long as it has been a source of debate amongst game show fans, GSN - the former Game Show Network - has always managed to put itself on a laundry list for bad game show ideas (or at least good game show decisions with poor execution). But does Lee's latest observation count as one of them? You may be surprised by his entry into the pantheon of "worst game ever".

The DiGeorge Files: Episode 4 - "GSN's Worst Mistake"

Big Brother's New Inmates Are...

Posted 07/01/04

We're five days away from a new Big Brother season, and it's about time to let the dogs... in. Continuing a trend of young, eager kiddies willing to do anything for money (the oldest cast mate of BB4 was Jack Owens, and even he was young at heart), the ages of the new breed range from 21 to 41. Geographically, they come from the Boston to Tupelo, while their occupations range from model to mortician to web designer.

Each of the thirteen will be involved in a season that will employ an increase of physical discomfort and implementing gameplay rules changes unlike any other. Additionally, the changes as a whole, whose details still remain a mystery, are meant, at least according to the video, to favor those who play the game honestly at the price of those who are more manipulative.

The show premieres with the 90-minute move-in this Tuesday, July 6.

Full Story:

Pat Kiernan Helms Studio 7

Posted 07/01/04

It's a reality drama. It's a quiz show. It's the WB's primetime quizzer "Studio 7". And now, it's a face.

The face is that of Pat Kiernan, an New York 1 anchor who has been tapped to host the series, which will premiere Thursday, July 22 at 9pm.

"Millionaire" EP Michael Davies, who will also oversee the hybrid reality/game show, says he's been a fan of Kiernan's for several years. "I have watched Pat Kiernan on 'NY1 News' almost every morning since I moved to New York in 1999," Davies says to "He is an utterly unique news anchor who is able to play it completely straight and simultaneously convey his startlingly dry sense of humor."

Mixing elements of "The Real World" and your typical quizzer, seven players live in a Manhattan apartment for seven days before competing for $77,000. Seven champions later, the winner of the season finale takes home $777,000.

Photo courtesy NY1
Full Story:

"Believe" This: Fantasia's #1

Posted 07/01/04

Even as "American Idol's" third season was rife with a little je ne sais quoi missing, the winner still finds time to put herself into the top spot on the charts. One week after the release of Fantasia Barrino's "I Believe" single (which also contains "Summertime" and "Chain of Fools"), it knocks off another Idol product, Clay Aiken's "The Way"/"Solitaire".

Fantasia, who has since dropped the last name, joins the ranks of series one winner Kelly Clarkson, whose "A Moment Like This"/"Before Your Love" single still holds the record for biggest jump, from #52 in the first week to #1 (which was actually a subject of a Final Jeopardy! from last season), and Ruben Studdard, whose "Flying Without Wings"/"Superstar", premiered at #2, behind Aiken's "This is the Night"/"Bridge Over Troubled Water".

However, a decline in viewership has translated into a decline in sales, as Fantasia's single is the lowest-selling single for an Idol winner, only about 36 percent of Clay's debut single and 50 percent of Ruben Studdard's debut single in their week of release.

Full story:

Apprentice's Katrina and Fiancee Involved in Tow Beating

Posted 06/30/04

"The Apprentice's" Katrina Campins charged yesterday that she and her fiancé were beaten by a gang of tow-truck drivers who swiped their car while they were in Donald Trump's Miami hotel planning their wedding, per a New York Post report.

The 24-year-old Floridian, who was eliminated from the contest in March, said the assault wrecked the day she and her high-school sweetheart had spent arranging their September nuptials at the city's Trump Sonesta Resort on Sunday.

When they arrived at Seay Towing in North Miami Beach, Campins said, "a gang was waiting for us," and she and her betrothed were repeatedly hit. "After a few minutes of being kicked and beaten on the ground, [we] were able to crawl to the front door and escape," she said.

Miami-Dade police is currently investigating the incident.

GSNN File Photo
Full story: New York Post

Fox Reality Specialist: "What is Original?"

Posted 06/30/04

"Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" begat "Greed". "The Chair" begat "The Chamber". "Extreme Makeover" begat "The Swan". "The Apprentice" begat "The Billionaire". "The Contender" begat "The Next Great Champ". And Mike Darnell of Fox is the man responsible.

Reality TV development on Fox has always been suspect (with possibly the exception of American Idol) because of its lack of proper taste, but that's not what has Darnell in a state of heightened defense nowadays. What really has Darnell stirring these days, according to a New York Times report, is over his penchant for coming up with reality shows that have at least a passing resemblance to shows owned by other networks. Imitation has always been a part of television, but what is different now is that ideas are being copied before they even get on the air.

The following story from the New York Times comes after charges that two of Fox's upcoming projects, "Trading Spouses" and "The Next Great Champ", were stolen from other networks' "Wife Swap" (ABC) and "The Contender" (NBC).

Full story: New York Times Arts

Action Moves as Comics Laugh to Tuesday Double

Posted 06/30/04

Adjust your TiVos accordingly folks.

NBC's breakout hit "Last Comic Standing" is aiming to put new meaning to the term "Daily Double" as they pair encores of the series with new episodes on Tuesdays, in effect moving the fledgling "Next Action Star" to Wednesdays, effective TONIGHT.

According to Mediaweek's Marc Berman, Next Action Star debuted in the Tuesday 8 pm hour with a third-place finish in the overnights (3.8/ 6), viewers (5.58 million) and adults 18-49 (2.3/7). behind reruns of "Navy NCIS" and "8 Simple Rules".  Ratings have been steadily declining ever since, while Last Comic Standing remains a positive summer force with a second-place finish in the overnights (6.9/10), viewers (10.18 million) and adults 18-49 (4.6/13). Ratings for that show, despite a controversy with the judges, have climbed.

PAX Wants Talented Kids, Balderdash Players, and More Shoppers...

Posted 06/30/04

Pax TV is putting out an APB on contestants for three of its properties. This fall will see the network's relaunch of "America's Most Talented Kids" as a series Win $1,000 and get discovered on PAX Network's new show "The Search for America's Most Talented Kids!" The show, which, like its predecessor, will feature talented kids from 4 to 14, will give away $1000 each episode. Prospective talent can call 323-960-4529  for auditions or e-mail pictures to with contact information.

Also, Pax is looking for contestants on two of its game shows, "Balderdash" (which will premiere in July with the return of "On the Cover") and "Shop 'Til You Drop". Prospectives for "Balderdash" who plan to be in the Los Angeles area can call  323-762-7126. Contestants who want to "Shop 'til You Drop" can find info on the Pax TV website:

Kallen Joins the Fight in The Contender

Posted 06/29/04

"The Contender"'s dream team keeps mounting against a challenge from Fox's "The Next Big Champ" this fall.

Mark Burnett signed on boxing manager Jackie Kallen, whose life provided the inspiration for the film "Against the Ropes," as den mother for the 16 pugilists in waiting, providing support and advice during her stay.

"Once again, we've landed another great addition to our all-star team," Burnett says in a report to "Jackie has established herself as a well-respected force in the world of boxing and will bring the perfect touch to this show as a mentor, den mother and caretaker to our contestants."

Kallen joins the team of Burnett, Sylvester Stallone, and Sugar Ray Leonard in making "The Contender" a reality. The show is set to launch in January on NBC show.

Full story: TV

Bob Barker, Other Heavyweights to Be at GSC

Posted 06/28/04

Bob Barker, come on down! To the Game Show Congress, that is.

The fifteen-time Emmy-winning host of "The Price is Right" will appear at August 15's awards luncheon at Game Show Congress 3, per information at the GSC website and a report from's Steve Beverly.

Barker, who'll be at the mike when season 33 transmits September 20, will also offer testimonials to industry legends Bill Cullen (who hoisted the original Price is Right to hit status in the 1950s) and Ralph Edwards (who "discovered" Bob Barker in his own "Truth or Consequences"). He joins retired legends Tom Kennedy & Jack Narz, "Blockbusters" announcer Bob Hilton, Bill's widow Ann Cullen -- who will accept the first Bill Cullen Lifetime Achievement Award on behalf of her late husband -- and producer Gary Edwards -- who will accept the Game Show Congress Service to Broadcasting Award on behalf of his father.

"Barker's publicist Henri Poulsson confirmed the Price executive producer's acceptance," Beverly reports. The luncheon is scheduled from 12:15-1:30 p.m. (PDT) at the Hilton Burbank Hotel.

GSNN File Photo
Full Story:
On the Web: Game Show Congress

Rock Star: Who's Vrooming Who?

Posted 06/28/04

Is there a double-theft charge for Fox and Mark Burnett looming before "Rock Star" ever gets to air? Sydney's Daily Telegraph seems to think so.

In the first idea-theft charge, the Daily Telegraph, owned by Fox parent News Corp., charged that the original idea of "Rock Star", which will utilize an international talent search to find the new lead singer of INXS, was pitched to the band by Michael Dalton, a producer at Australian broadcaster Nine Network, last year. Per the Telegraph, Dalton proposed a reality show called "New Sensation", focused on the band's search for a lead singer, to INXS's manager Dave Edwards. However, Edwards turned him down flat ... then misappropriated the idea and pitched it to Mark Burnett. An anonymous source "close to the band" said that "the only reason INXS is even doing the show is because Mark Burnett came on board."

For its part, INXS claimed that they came up with the idea for the show five years ago, even before reality TV became an international sensation. Mark Burnett admitted right from the beginning, before news of the Nine Network pitch had leaked, that INXS brought the idea to him in April. Burnett noted that "I am a long-time fan of INXS and feel very fortunate that INXS approached us with this idea and have entrusted us with their future."

Photo courtesy NBC
Full story: Reality TV World

Spike Sets Up Ultimate Fighter

Posted 06/28/04

The reality competition spreads to even more genres. First, there was music. Then business. Now... Ultimate Fighting?

Spike TV is co-opping with Ultimate Fighting Championship for a series about the martial arts sport. The male-oriented cable network has ordered 13 hour-long episodes of "Ultimate Fighter" to begin airing in January, according to a report from Yahoo! TV.

Set to start shooting in September in Las Vegas , "Fighter" will chronicle a competition among 20 athletes to earn a shot at a spot in the UFC league. Mixed martial arts involves fighters of different weight classes battling each other using techniques from karate, judo and kickboxing.

The Spike deal could represent a turnabout for UFC, which cable operators dropped from pay-per-view during the late 1990s because of controversy over its violent action. Since coming under new ownership in 2001, the sport has remade itself in a bid for mainstream viewers.

Full story: Yahoo! TV

Dream Job Winner Premieres Next Week, Second and Third Seasons Casting

Posted 06/23/04

Mike Hall, the winner of season one of ESPN's "Dream Job," has his first on-camera appearance next Monday on Sportscenter. Meanwhile, ESPN is busy plotting on who will take his place in the pantheon of reality TV winners.

Reality TV World's Steve Rogers reports that ESPN, pleased with "Dream Job's" performance over its first season, has moved up season 2 to September, while the original winter 2005 date will kick off season three. Stuart Scott returns to host both seasons. Open casting calls for both editions will begin June 29 in New York.

The second season will debut Tuesday, September 21 at 7PM ET/PT, with hourlong installments Tuesdays thereafter for nine weeks with the winner being named the newest SportsCenter anchor. The third season will search for a play-by-play announcer and will be aired beginning February 2005. Both elimination-style shows will consist of a panel of judges with viewers voting on contestants’ aptitudes in various sports-related tasks.

The initial casting tour will visit 14 major U.S. cities, beginning June 29 in New York and concluding in Orlando, Florida on July 30. After that, the finals will be held August 9-11 in New York. Contestant hopefuls can visit for eligibility rules and city-specific audition details.

This is the third and fourth chance to pick a new employee of ESPN out of the general public. Researcher Howie Schwab will host "Stump the Schwab" starting July 16, with the sports trivia game show winner joining Schwab as an ESPN researcher.

Full story:

Extra: H2 and Canadian Idol

Posted 06/10/04

We've got two GSNN Extras for the price of one...

In the first, we revisit a story done on site two years ago about Hollywood Squares. Here at the finale, we go back to what was said and analyze the validity of those statements.

In the second, our own Ryan Vickers hopes to follow the trail made by another Ryan as the next Canadian Idol. How did he do? And who knew he could sing?

GSNN EXTRA: Hollywood to H2 - The Final Chapter
GSNN EXTRA: I Was a Canadian Idol Hopeful...

We're looking for a few good writers...

Posted 05/28/04

Hey! If you're reading this, and you can write, and you're a game show fan (even if you're a casual fan), then we want to talk to you!

It may be the end of the regular season, but the new offerings continue all over the place. We will be needing writers to not only cover new shows but to be adding their opinions to this site as we keep getting bigger and better. If you would like to contribute, please e-mail

We look forward to hearing from you!

PS: No, we didn't get Betty to beg for us. The picture is merely a comedic device. But we could still use some help.

More news...


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