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Interview with the Groundhog
February 1

Here at, we spare no expense to get you the hardest hitting interviews on the planet. And to prove it, we have an interview with one of the groundhogs that has predicted that we will be enduring another 6 weeks worth of Winter. However, since GSNN doesn't have a budget, we couldn't go down to Pennsylvania to get a real celebrity Groundhog, so we found one in NYC. Gordon Pepper gets the exclusive interview with Groundhog and game show fan Manhattan Marmota.

Gordon: Thanks for taking the interview. So you saw your shadow and decided to declare 6 more weeks of Winter?

MM: Yes I did.

Gordon: As the official Game Show Groundhog, the first question, of course, is why did you think that game show fans have 6 more weeks of Winter?

MM: Well, Gordon, this is not only the best time for game show fans, but this may be the best ever period in prime time history that you will have so many game show choices. Let's just take a look at right now. You have a game show on the air 5 days a week in Primetime Monday Thru Friday, and between primetime and cable, you have original episodes of game shows on during the weekends as well. The best part is that the majority of those shows are bringing in the ratings, so any worries of an anti-game show backlash once the writer's strike ends will probably be non-existent. The past 4 months have shown us that game shows are here to stay, so why not take an extra 6 weeks and enjoy it instead of going out in this crappy rainy, snowy weather?

Gordon: So what shows do you like right now?

MM: As Groundhogs are naturally aggressive creatures, I love Pros Vs. Joes, UFC, and American Gladiators. That Gauntlet track reminds me of holes I made around 10 years ago near the Hudson River. My wife Marge loves American Idol (which I can deal with in chunks, though sometimes, I wish that I could burrow my head in the ground to mute out some of the bad singing). I also appreciate 1 Vs. 100's equal rights movement for having Jake the Chimp on the show. I'm still waiting for a Groundhog to be featured on the show.

Gordon: What about the return of The Mole? That has to get you somewhat excited, no?

MM: Actually, no. Contrary to popular belief, we're not related at all. The groundhog, also known as the woodchuck, land beaver, or whistlepig, is a rodent of the family Sciuridae, belonging to the group of large ground squirrels known as marmots. However, the mole is a mammal of the family Talpidae in the order Soricomorpha. So we may look related, but we're not. Hence, The Mole show means nothing to our kind.

Gordon: I see. So what should I be excited about for the next 6 weeks?

MM: During the next month and a half, there will be more than 20 game shows premiering. More than 60% of those will be in Prime Time. I'm personally looking to see some of my relatives on Survivor: Micronesia, but producer Mark Burnett also has 2 more shows coming out - Amne$ia and My Dad is Better than your Dad. The aggressive side of me wants to check out MDIBTYD. I may also check out Amne$ia. Marge tells me that I have a better memory than Pete the pachyderm, so that's worth a shot. Some of my cousins may also be on Paradise Hotel 2, so I may watch to see if they left me any messages in the sand or as tree markings.

Gordon: Are there any shows that you aren't going to be watching?

MM: This may surprise you, but I'm not a big fan of any of the cooking shows. I cringe whenever I see them using rabbits and other mammals in their recipe. We're also aggressive creatures by nature, so any show where people have to work as a team, like the Pussycat Dolls, isn't my cup of tea. Since we don't get along with our neighbors, the Barkleys, That new dog show on CBS isn't going to see much air time on our TV either.

Gordon: I know you want to get back into your burrow. Any last comments?

MM: Yo humans - this is the best time of the year. We have lots of great game shows, and if you are a fan, there's no reason to come out of your hole..I mean house for the next 6 weeks. Enjoy the abundance of shows, because you will never know when the next opportunity will arise that you have the same opportunity to see all of this good programming.

Gordon: Thank you, Manhattan Marmota, for the interview.

MM: No problem, Gordon. See you next year.

So that's my interview with the Groundhog. We'll have the normal State of Play Column up next week.

Whenever Gordon Pepper sees its shadow, it means six more weeks of "American Idol"... that he has to record. E-mail him at