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Paying homage to shows such as "Pardon the Interruption", "Around the Horn", "The Best Damn Sports Show Period", "Best Week Ever", and "The Soup", We Love to Interrupt is a weekly raw, frank, red-blooded, two-fisted, full-bodied look into the world of game shows. Comments are always welcomed here!

Hosted by Chico Alexander and Gordon Pepper, and featuring the editors/contributors to GSNN


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February 21, 2005

Gordon Pepper: This is Gordon Pepper, and we welcome you on this President's Day Weekend. Who here has off on Monday?
Chico Alexander: Not me.
James Dinan: Not me.
Joe Van Ginkel: I do. But then I've had the last SIX MONTHS OFF. ARRRRRRRRGH!
Chico: Urgh. From somewhere in America, the NHL 2005 Memorial Edition of WLTI... is on. Chico Alexander with you on this beautiful Sunday morning.
Gordon: As we note the passing of the NHL season, we say hello to our panel this morning. From Jeopardy, Millionaire and Beat the Block on 95.5 PLJ, it's Jason Block!
Jason Block: Yo.
Gordon: From WWTBAM fame, James Dinan.
James: Howdy.
Gordon: And from Russian Roulette "I did everything right and still fell down the damn hole" fame, Joe Van Ginkel.
Joe: !SALUTE!
Chico: Anyway, Lot of stuff to go through this week, but first, it's Lost... for real - only without the plane, the weird creature, or the dude from Lord of the Rings. Survivor Palau kicked off by kicking off three. First thoughts on the first episode... "Dude! Dodgeball!"
Gordon: It's a classic case of pick the kids out of the lot, as the two people not selected got eliminated. One person was gone because he could have been a major threat later on down the line. The other person was eliminated because she....was a looney.
Chico: I would eliminated the looney myself as well. One thing you don't do on the first day is get on people's nerves. Not only did Wanda learn that, but so did Jolanda, as the elder of the Ulong (mmmm... Ulong) tribe is expelled.
Gordon: Well, at least the Black person wasn't left off the....oh, wait.
James: Didn't we go over this last week?
Chico: Yeah. For about a couple of days last week. But I suppose Gordon has another reason other than the usual tirade for people voting her off. At least I hope so or else we're going to get some angry mail.
Gordon: No tirade. Just making a mental note, that's all. Omarosa is my new game show hussy. Omarosa, if you're reading us, e-mail us. Let's chat.
Chico: Oh, so you're saying that she saw it coming, too?
Gordon: Apparently, she did. I do think there was more than her skin color that got her eliminated, as she was a bit too bossy - but as she was the only minority in her group, you would have to wonder if she gets booted if she was white...
Chico: Well, I can tell you that Angie was a hair short of getting the boot herself. Any reasoning to that?
Gordon: The Black dominant woman who scares people Vs. the white misfit in society. If Jolanda is white, you could make an argument that Angie would have been gone instead. As I said, it was more than skin color, but you would have to wonder...
Chico: Well, it could've been worse. You could have Wanda to kick around for another three days. Talk about scary.
Gordon: Well, her singing isn't nearly as good as...Amanda Avila's or any of the other 23 singers as we move on to American Idol.
James: What a segue way.
Chico: So we're down to the final 24... and for the most part, we're actually seeing some killer threats this time.
Gordon: We're going to get into this in greater detail later on in the show, but a quick hit here - did the judges make the right decision or is there
someone who isn't on the list who should be?
Chico: I do have some head-scritchies over why Jaclyn Crum wasn't selected.
Gordon: My only thought is that they saw potential there and they think she would shine next year as a killer talent, instead of someone who would may be get to the outskirts of the Top 12.
Chico: I mean, despite everything going on with that girl, she still turned out a killer showing.
Gordon: She was certainly good enough to be on this year.
Chico: Well, if anything, she has a year to get better. And she CAN only get better, you know?
James: Absolutely, if she chooses to try out again.
Chico: I think she will. Nothing stopping her from doing so, you know?
James: True.
Chico: And we'd throw our weight behind her. If her back isn't broken after
that, I'd say final 12 easy :)
Gordon: Jaclyn, if you're reading this, e-mail us. Let's chat.
Chico: You have any problems with the selection, Gordo?
Gordon: I actually think they got it right this year.
Chico: You think so?
Gordon: This is much different than last year, when I was not pleased with the selections. I don't think they made any errors with the guys. With the girls, I would have loved to see Jaclyn and Jessica Todd in there, but you can't argue with the 12 girls who got in.
Joe: Amanda will own them all.
Chico: We'll see this week when we go to the public vote. But back to the opening. We made mention that the NHL season is officially kaput-ski.
James: There's always Arena football
Joe: <Vic "The Brick" Jacobs>NHL: You see the Brick? (!SMASH!) YOU'VE GOT IT!</VTBJ>
Chico: I'm officially switching over to MLS now. :) But what you may not know is that ESPN2's schedule for the games may have an adverse effect on three of its game shows from last year. Namely, "Okay, hurry up offense, we need new episodes."
Gordon: Nothing wrong with that, it's great for the deuce to be adding game shows to their line-up. However...
Chico: Yep... Your favorite's among them, Gordon.
Joe: STUMP THE SCHWAB!
Gordon: Blech.
Chico: Yay!
Gordon: Oh Joy, oh Melodious Rapture. (Rolls Eyes)
<Klauss-Gibson sarcasm detector (TM) goes berserk>
Gordon: And how many episodes of this masterpiece will we be seeing again?
James: 30.
Chico: 30?
James: According to the Schwab website, it's 30.
Chico: That's a lot of Schwab.
Joe: There's already a lot of Schwab to go around to start with, isn't there?
Gordon: Well, it's also a lot of NHL playoffs to be covering.
Chico: Mediaweek's coming out with a report that episodes could begin as early as April 11.
James: Maybe another friend of mine will win.
Chico: Friend of yours was on the first series?
James: Curt Spear...played NTN with him every week when I lived in Virginia.
Chico: Ah, C-Money. I remember him well. Almost went all the way.
Gordon: You ever speak to him, James?
James: Yes...but he admitted that he didn't mind losing at the end.
Chico: Cool, cool.
James: He agrees with Sal Marchiano...happiness is being as far away from Bristol, CT as possible.
Gordon: Curt, if you're reading this, e-mail us. Let's chat.
James: As I mentioned to Gordon before, I think there's a good game in Schwab...the producers need to find it. Perhaps extra episodes means a format tinkering, which may mean a better game.
Gordon: I think this calls for a Big Board.
Chico: I'll allow it.

(Big Board Topic - How to FIX Stump the Schwab)

Chico: Just a reminder that putting the show out of its misery is not an option, Gordon.
Gordon: Since I have to watch 30 episodes of this anyways, we may as well keep an open mind and hope they tinker it. Fix #1 - Tinker the Schwab. Ben Stein, he wasn't, and he was so boorish that I wondered if people would actually WANT to work for him when the show ended.
James: From what I was told...how he acted on the show was NOT an act.
Gordon: Or did they lose to him so they wouldn't have to deal with him on a permanent basis?
Chico: I didn't think it was, but let's just say if that were the case, I wouldn't be surprised.
Gordon: Based on what you saw, would any of you want to work for him?
James: No
Chico: I think I might've in a past persona... Ever work at Lowe's? Not a good time.
James: He'd be a good candidate for "Building Respect in the Workplace" workshop.
Gordon: Well, if the prize is to work for a guy that no one likes, you are going to have problems. #2 - If that's the case, let's get a better grand prize.
Chico: Two Minute Drill had the right idea. And I defy you to think otherwise.
James: Agree with the 2MD comparison.
Gordon: 2md definitely had the right idea.
James: Given the fact that the job is STILL open (from a friend of mine who applied for the position), I fear the worst.
Gordon: And I have a very good idea for that - what about the opportunity to run ESPN for the week? With no hockey going on, they can decide what to fill in. It could be a sport nut's dream.
James: I may not go that far...perhaps similar to what TV Land did with Ultimate TV Fan...have the winner run a block of ESPN Classic every week for a year.
Gordon: Sounds like a great idea.
Chico: Yep.
James: I propose a fix...
Gordon: Go for it James
James: #3 - Dump Stuart Scott. He's fine for Dream Job, but he's not quiz material. Go for a host who understands that the contestants are the star of the show, not the host.
James: Bring Kenny Mayne out of mothballs and put him behind the mic
Gordon: Here, here
Chico: Carolina connections aside, I'll drink to that.
Gordon: #4 - Have the Schwab be more interactive before the bonus round. The Schwab should do something besides spew off facts and look pompous.
Chico: He was interactive in round 1. For no other reason than there has to be some instance where he's interactive, I believe.
James: There has to be a better way to work Schwab into the main game.
Chico: Yeah. I mean, after round 1, he didn't even matter (until the end game). What's up with that?
James: Perhaps something similar to the second round of WBSM, where Ben played against the two remaining contestants.
Chico: You mean kinda like a reverse of the current formula?
James: Yes
Chico: Ah. Cool.
Gordon: which brings us to...#5 - Game format. Round 2 maybe should evolve into Round 1, with Round 1 being something else.
James: Also, if they choose to keep Round 1 as is, I would give a contestant a bonus prize for outpointing Schwab at the end. Problem there was Round 2 always changed. We need more consistent game play.
Gordon: True. And we move on to....#6. The bonus round. Way too complicated for most people to get. Streamline it and make it simpler.
James: It's as if the producers wanted to cash in on the poker craze, but had absolutely no clue how to do it.
Chico: I believe that Beat the Geeks had the same round, except it had a finite payoff point and no strikes.
James: Yes...7 points for a win.
Chico: Hit it right on the nose, James. That worked. In some ways, this round works, but in some ways, presentation turns it off.
James: Two players...two podiums...host in the middle...that's all you need.
Chico: KISS: Keep it simple, stupid. Any more fixes or are we moving forward?
Gordon: Last one....#7 - if we see the same thing as last season with no fixes, then we should storm the offices in Bristol, burn the reels and make them revisit 2 Minute Drill.
Joe: lol
James: Agreed...I mean the same production company is responsible for Schwab and Drill. How can you do one so right and one so wrong?
Chico: Ask Jack Barry.
Joe: ROFL
Chico: Not even a SECRET that Bullseye and the Joker's Wild were essentially the same game :)
Gordon: That fixes the Schwab - hopefully.
Chico: Well, another show that ESPN is rushing to the airwaves in the NHL's wake... I'd Do Anything. A chance for George Gray to redeem himself after the $25 Million Hoax.
James: ...and Greek Games
Chico: And every dark nadir in his roller-coaster career. I'd go into details, but we already did in a past episode. Look for the Big Board entitled "Gray's Anatomy". It's all there.
Gordon: Finally, this weekend, we will get Dream Job 3, which will also be extended for a few episodes thanks to the lack of NHL. We'll get to more of that on the next show.
Chico: Still on sports, and now that we have Jason here...
Jason: Go ahead...this one makes my blood boil and I have been waiting all week.
Chico: Mount St. Block is about to ignite...
James: <RUMBLE>
Gordon: For the first time ever, someone commits suicide before the start of a show. As The Contender starts, the question becomes...should it? Mr. Block, I hand you the podium.
Jason: A contender for the Contender...Najai Turpin shot himself in the head. He left a 2 yr old daughter and a girlfriend. The questions remain. The fact is we know that is he is NOT in the live final, obviously. So what do you do? My theory is that a) his loss in the show b) combined with the fact that he was mentally unstable enough to shoot himself over his lovelife means a few things. That the show didn't catch it or they didn't want to catch it. So my opinion is that the show should NOT go on. And if they do show the show, they are exploiting his memory--trust fun or not. Burnett has got a major hot potato on his hands - And this leads to something else which I will discuss later.
Gordon: I will give you a simple reason why it should go on. Quite honestly, this show gives 16 people a chance to make a jump in their lives - to give themselves a future that they would never have without the help of the show. Two of these people still have a shot at a million dollars - but even more importantly, a chance to make a huge step and jump into the big time of their profession. If you cancel the show, you ruin the dreams of 16 people just to protect the sanctity of one person who can no longer be helped by anyone on this Earth.
Joe: Agreed, sadly.
Jason: I say ruin the dreams.
Gordon: And you will ruin the chances of at least one person of winning a million dollars - and possibly a handful of life experiences.
Jason: Burnett and Stallone are pissing on this guy grave for ratings, money and airtime. Nothing more. They don't give a rat's ass about him.
Gordon: Maybe so, but they care about the people who they can help promote - and so do I.
Jason: Ok..I have one question for you. Let's say during the live finale we have a punch to the head by one of the boxers and someone dies in the ring (a la Owen Hart--the WWF wrestler who died in a harness accident)--what then? Do you still not blame Burnett for this fiasco?
Gordon: That happens in the real world of boxing occasionally, so that wouldn't be a rarity than only happens in a game show. I think it would be a non-factor.
Joe: Besides how would Burnett be able to anticipate something like that in the first place?
James: From what I've heard, the boxing insiders already know who will be in the final fight, so they already know who has "it." Canceling the show
won't stop the fighters from reaching their dreams.
Gordon: If they don't get the national spotlight, they stand to lose money in endorsements and potential deals. This show would also be used to help
reinvigorate boxing, so the fates of the sport and of people's professions are also riding on the show.
James: Nobody cares about pro boxing, and I just feel the Contender would fail no matter what.
Joe: Uh, James, I'm a boxing fan myself.
Gordon: I think Burnett is going to shy more to the tales and the backgrounds of the contenders and les on the sport - and Burnett is a master in that field.
James: NBC doesn't have much hope for this show, given the frequent delays and time slot switches.
Gordon: I agree, but I think that they are at least going to try - and you never know.
James: I'm a boxing fan, too, but our numbers have been slipping for decades.
Joe: Truthfully, though, James does have a point. NBC obviously doesn't have much faith in this show, otherwise they'd have sent it in against American Idol.
James: And now it's going up against Cold Case, Simpsons and Extreme Makeover 2.
Gordon: At least it's giving the show a chance - whereas against American Idol or Lost, it gets shelled.
James: I'm a bit surprised there has been no outcry over NBC and Burnett agreeing to air the show.
Jason: Because people want to see the exploitation. Thank you.
Gordon: I don't think there will be an outcry. If you can link the death to the show, I think you would have something, but you can't, and hence the show must go on. I think we need to take a break before we can go on. Chico?
Chico: Well, the Idols take... the CHAIR! (Happy birthday, Johnny Mac!) in Who's Your Daddy, and who should be the daddy as Jeopardy! is given the Accuracy or Idiocy treatment. We'll see you after the break!

(This break has been brought to you by the NHL. See what we've done is cancel our season so you can see more Schwab and I'd Do Anything! Aren't you happy?)

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