This week premiered the 13th season of the show “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?”
Judging from how this season looks, it should be its last.
First off, Cedric the Entertainer is out as host. In a way, this is a plus because he really wasn’t that good on the show anyway.
Now enter Terry Crews. If you have never heard of him, he was a former football player, but he is probably best known as the guy from the Old Spice ads. He is also a movie and TV actor.
Now he can add game show host to that resume, but this is not something he should be proud of.
After watching the first 6 episodes (it is being double run locally with 2 ½ hours between the shows), I have realized that this guy is noisy, very loud and noisy at that. Every time the guy says “Let’s Play Millionaire”, the camera zooms in on him as he yells out that phrase. Honestly, this gets more than annoying especially after every commercial and every new player is introduced.
As far as the game itself goes, gone is the long table from last year that both Cedric and the player stood at. I expect that it is used as a lunch table again. Now the contestant and host stand at podiums facing each other. Even though they look like they would have monitors on them, it appears that either they are not used as such or going to be used later as those. For now, the questions appear as they always have on a large screen between 2 sections of the audience. I wish they would go back to the chairs back in the Regis Philbin days but I don’t expect that to happen at all. As far as the rest of the set goes, it is still the same look that has been there since the show’s inception on network television.
The only major change to the show is in the lifelines of the show. Gone is one of the “Jump the Question” and in its place is a new “+1” lifeline. This lifeline allows the contestant to bring down to the stage a person that the contestant brought with them. This is great as long as the person has someone brought somebody with them as some people have no audience member with them.
Also gone from the show, are the category names for the first round of questions. They were sort of stupid and added nothing to game play value. To me, this was the only positive change to the show.
Now finally, back to Mr. Crews and his wardrobe. On one recent show, he wore a white shirt that had a red collar and matching red pants. This looked absolutely horrible unless you are a clown. I seriously expected him to pull out a big red nose and giant shoes to horrific.
The worst thing overall is that this show is being double run in many parts of the country. Some places are running the episodes back-to-back while others like locally are running them with a break in-between. Either way, once a day is more than enough of this annoying host.
If this show expects to make it to a 14th year, here are my recommendations:
- Scrap the tired set. It really needs a refreshing. Certainly with all the money saved by not giving away the million dollars could be used to make a new set.
- Start a completely new game format. Yes, this is what the game is known for, but it can be tweaked to a completely level.
- Polish the host to not being annoying. There are certainly plenty of game show hosts that are unemployed who could use the work or return from retirement. It is time to get somebody who can make this show be like those of game show heyday of the 1970’s and 1980’s. If you remember those days, you will appreciate what I am saying here.
When I wrote this review last year of this show, I complained that the contestants were mostly black players. This is not the case this year as there has been a fairly good mix of race and sexes of the contestants. If there was one shining point to this season, this would be it.
Last year, I gave the show a score of 5. My score this year has dropped because of the above mentioned complaints. This show has much room for improvement since it has taken a couple of steps backward this year.
My score: 3