Tuesday, June 17, 2008
A few years back, I was interning at CAMA (Cable Advertising of Metro Atlanta). We were responsible for all the really bad commercials on cable TV. CAMA also had control of a cable channel which aired infomercials around the clock, interrupted every once in a while by two original content shows that we produced, both sports related.
One day my boss said to me, "If you have any show ideas or ideas in general, let me know."
I told him that I thought we should get the syndication rights to a Japanese show that I had seen while summering in Europe. I described the show to him and found him some pictures and information on the show. I pitched it at him hard.
My idea was ultimately dismissed and ignored.
The show was Takeshi's Castle. Two years later Spike TV premiered Takeshi's Castle under the name MXC or Most Extreme Challenge. MXC was among the highest rated shows on cable television for a while and is still one of Spike TV's signature shows. Furthermore, within the next couple of weeks several TV networks are premiering game shows based directly on Takeshi's Castle.
Why did I tell you this little story? I want you to understand that I know what people want to watch when it comes to ridiculous and painful game shows, so that when I tell you that my game, Drink or Cane, has everything that people want to see, you will believe me.
Drink or Cane is played by five contestants above the age of twenty-one who pass a physical exam.
In the first round, contestants must answer a set of fifteen increasingly difficult questions. They must answer each question within three seconds. If they answer correctly, they decide the fate of the other contestants, deciding between the other contestants all taking shots or all being hit in the back of the legs with a bamboo cane. If they answer incorrectly or fail to answer, they must then make the choice between a severe blow to the backs of their legs with a bamboo cane, and taking a shot of an alcoholic beverage. The shots and blows will be administered by sexy and scantily clad women.
The second round is all about competitive eating. Contestants have two minutes to eat as many hot dogs (or some similar item) as they can. For every hot dog that they eat they receive one second off their time in round three.
The third round is an obstacle course similar to the one on Double Dare. Everything comes down to round three. The contestant with the best time on the obstacle course wins the game.
Rounds one and two culminate to affect the third round. Contestants must, in the first round, choose between being physically diminished by the cane or alcohol. If they receive too many blows to the backs of their legs they will suffer on the obstacle course. Likewise, if they drink too much they will perform just as poorly. Similarly, in the second round, contestants have the chance to shave time off their final performance in round three, but if they eat too much, they won't be able to function well. It is hard to throw up and run at the same time. Trust me.
This is a game of strategy.
Make this game happen. It is everything that anyone could ever want in a game show. Plus, there is built in product placement. Sure you might have a hard time getting it on TV here in the US, but TV is old news, and there are no censors on the internet, at least not yet.