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Hey, isn’t that new NBC game show Identity just What’s My Line on steroids, pumped up with that new Apocalypto game show set design? Anyway, while Penn Gillette’s network gig promises to last an episode or two, the prime time game show fun continues. Hot on the heels of William Shatner’s career-capping performance in Show Me The Money, ABC is upping the ante by stealing a very popular show from Germany.
The folks who kidnapped The Weakest Link apparently watched television in Germany on their latest vacation and have convinced ABC to go for an Americanized version of Wetten dass…? (which translates to Wanna Bet?), a show that breeds the game show with the variety show (find the celeb in the above clip). ABC’s making it more “American” by adding one more crucial factor:The bet.
Wetten dass…? already combines celebrity interviews and musical segments with outrageous and bizarre stunts by seemingly ordinary people. The way American producer Phil Guerin describes it, “You get these real people who claim they can do something outrageous, like being dropped onto a chair from 50 feet in the air.”
Celebrity guests bet if they can do it–or survive. If the civilian wins the bet, the celebrity must do something crazy.
On the ABC version, a team of contestants will do the betting, hoping to win a big cash prize. Celebrities may still be in the mix. Personally we’d prefer to see David Gest or Dave Coulier do something crazy. And it’s a no-brainer: if they can dry him out, Hasselhoff as host.
The German version’s run for more than twenty years, and is said to be the most popular show in Germany and all of Europe. According to their publicity, even the German version of American Idol (German Idol?) takes the night off when it airs.
And there’s more to come. CBS is planning to resuscitate Name That Tune (which originally ran in the early Fifties, and announced a quiz show that pits brainy brats against adults.