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Casino Crazy? Not Really...
Gordon Pepper

This past Friday was the start of the traveling Price is Right shows in Atlantic City. When I first heard about this when they first tried this, I thought it was a great idea. A great idea was also when they had the traveling Wheel of Fortune auditions in the New Jersey coastline. I was also thinking about all of the casinos getting coverage with the World Series of Poker, the World Poker Tour, and the list goes on.

Then I was thinking a bit. This whole casino tied into game shows has been nothing new. Some of the most classic game shows (Card Sharks, High Rollers, Gambit, The Big Showdown) have been tied to the basic gambling games. Then there's The Price is Right - Hit Me, Poker Game, the Dice Game, and Let 'Em Roll (among others) all owe their creation to gambling havens.

What about the game shows that have been filmed for TV at the casinos? Let's Make A Deal (which featured many unique gambling games of their own) has been in Las Vegas (The Hilton), and has had a traveling version of their own and Gambit has also has a Las Vegas version. Caesar's Challenge and Ruckus have taken place in the casinos. Even The Donald (with his short-lived Trump Card) has graced the TV set.

Is the casino craze that surprising? To some people, maybe it is, but if we really look at it, we've actually been in the casino craze for the past 30 years - and there's no sight of it remotely slowing down.

As much as Anthony wanted Scott Savol to stay on, the round mound of sound has finally left the building. Happy birthday, Anthony! Will this be a very short celebration? As usual we start with the person who isn't celebrating, and that is...

The second that Simon started to praise you, I knew your number was up. Without the fear of you being eliminated, the people didn't vote for you, and bingo - you're gone. My grandma was also right - your really lousy attitude didn't help you at all and I hope that when you do record your first album that you treat the staff better than you treat the judges.

So who does this help?

Why you are safe – Well, Scott's departure doesn't do much for you - but you singing lights out over Carrie does. You have taken the 'favorite' label from  Carrie and stuck it to yourself. Congratulations!

Why you are in trouble - Why is the Final Four scary? Because people think  that the match is over and it's going to be a Carrie/Bo Final 2. That will get  people to vote for Anthony and Vonzell, who are clearly in trouble...unless you give your fans a reason to not vote for you.

Why you are out – A flat effort convinces people to not vote for you - and convinces another shocking exit.

Why you are safe – It just doesn't matter how bad you screw up the words, does it?

Why you are in trouble – It could matter here. If it's a Bo/Carrie Final 2, that means that the R & B population will be completely shut out of the voting. I am still not convinced that they are going to be shut out, and of the 2 people to sing emotionless and flat, you, Ms. Robot Mangler, would be more likely to do it.

Why you are out – I could repeat what I said last week - so I will - You come out flat, mangle the lyrics, Bo outsings you hands down and everyone else gets more votes because the audience knows that they are in danger – but they think that you don’t need their vote and you didn’t earn it – you earned a spot to leave, instead. This week, though, it could certainly by more realistic...

Why you are safe – Scott's departure. You will be getting an overwhelming (if not all) of his votes. That should keep you very safe.

Why you are in trouble – It's going to be real interesting to see what happens this week. I think that you could have enough votes to get into the Top 2, and a great performance can seal it.

Why you are out – You sing horrifically and it's enough for Anthony (who's  fans know they have to vote for him - or else) to edge you out for that final  spot.

Why you are safe – Uhhh...well....last week was your birthday?

Why you are in trouble – Ironically, it's last week that got you into trouble. You were so awful that almost all of the votes that you really needed to get went to Bo - leaving you back in the bottom 2 (which you probably wouldn't have been in if you sang like you have been doing for the past few weeks). You DESPERATELY need to sing lights out and then have someone else royally sing as you did, last week.

Why you are out – Bo, Carrie and Vonzell performs as expected, leaving you out - as expected.

So my choice is that Anthony follows Scott right out the door. We'll see if he does - or if the Final Four once again does in a front-runner - next week.

Gordon Pepper can be reached at


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