Is it possible that ABC will make The Gong Show season 2? It’s certainly something worth a little consideration.
We wrote about the show here and there this season (CarterMatt contributor Jason Prager appeared on one of the episodes), and one thing we don’t think we’ve touched on is how much the show became progressively more entertaining as it went on. Tommy Maitland proved to be an entertaining master of ceremonies once we got accustomed to his rapport, and he also grew more comfortable at the same time. The majority of the performers were stupid, but if you went into the show with that understanding ahead of time, odds are you found yourself entertained in the end.
The biggest thing that the show has going for it is just that it’s a silly way to turn off your brain for a little while and just enjoy some silly television. It’s not something that will depress you or force conversations about politics or a frustrating day of work. It’s fun, and you get to see some familiar faces on the judging panel.
So why hasn’t the show been renewed yet? One of the big reasons for that is simply the ratings, which are down versus some of ABC’s other summer game shows. The Gong Show is averaging a 0.7 in the 18-49 demographic — while that’s actually better than many of the network’s new scripted entities like Somewhere Between or Still Star-Crossed, that’s not necessarily enough to guarantee a renewal. There is also a cost associated with it. While the winner of each show only gets a prize of just over $2,000 (a pretty low sum for a game-show winner), Maitland’s alter ego, a man you’re certainly familiar with thanks to his role in the Austin Powers movies, ended up generating around $3 million for his participation in the project. This is according to a recent report from Variety. That puts him up there with Jamie Foxx of Beat Shazam and Alec Baldwin of Match Game as some of the most expensive hosts in summer TV. This is something that ABC would have to think about; Maitland is a huge part of the show’s identity in its modern form, and you cannot really bring the series back without him.
We figure that ABC will figure out the fate of The Gong Show a little bit later this year. If there is one reason to have hope for it, it’s probably just that they have repeated episodes on a number of occasions. If they felt as though the show was a waste of time, they’d probably stop doing that and move on to some other projects. They certainly do have plenty of other reality and game shows on their schedule.
Do you want to see The Gong Show season 2 happen at some point in the future? Be sure to sound off with your thoughts in the comments below! (Photo: ABC.)