At the moment, it is not easy to be a game show. We continue to see networks try to get the format going again, but really not since “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” (or to a lesser extent “Deal or No Deal”) has there been a show that really captured the imagination of the country for a lengthy period of time.
The latest example of that? ABC’s uber-complicated “500 Questions,” which seems to have forgotten the majority of the reason why the Regis Philbin version of “Millionaire” was such an enormous hit: It was simple. It took all of just a few seconds to understand how the game is played, and even the modern version of the game show (soon to be hosted by Chris Harrison) has forgotten some of that. “500 Questions” has been running for the past few days, but Friday it mustered a meager 0.8 rating in the 18-49 demographic, which is lower than the 1.1 that a rerun of “Shark Tank” drew after it.
Ultimately, what we are mostly saying here is that you are probably not going to be seeing a whole lot more of this show anytime soon. Game shows may be cheap, but they still have to draw numbers! We imagine that at the end of the day, Fox may have some better look with their “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?” revival. While we’re not going to say that it was some enormous smash, it was at least reasonably successful during its first run.
Also, it’s not exactly like anyone has some sort of enormous expectations this time of year for a show to come in and deliver just a huge knockout punch. It just needs to do better than some repeats.
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