TV & Showbiz

Too Much of an Unfunny Thing?

If you’re a game show fan, but not enough of one that you’ve already set your DVR to record The Price is Right every day, you may want to do so for tomorrow’s episode.

To hear fans talk, it’s either going to be a really good, funny, zany episode you’ll enjoy, or it’s going to catapult the show a few hundred feet closer to the “Jump the Shark” zone.

Tomorrow, of course, is April Fools’ Day. And The Price is Right is no stranger to the occasional April Fools’ joke on a contestant. In the Bob Barker days, this would usually consist of something unusual in a showcase: a contestant was shown a collection of prizes that fell apart or were “accidentally” destroyed during the showcase itself by one mishap or another.

The attached video, with it’s annoying lip-sync problems, is a perfect example of just such a gag, from 1983, which I’m sorry to point out, was 27 years ago!

Barker would then reveal to the sometimes confused contestant that they’d played an April Fools’ prank, and then show them a really nice showcase. (Contestants sometimes needed to be reminded that it was an April Fools’ Day show because the game taped up to a month in advance.)

Last year, under Drew Carey’s reign as host, the lunacy began right off the top of the show: during the opening, as cameras panned the audience of 320 people, every person was wearing those Groucho Marx gag glasses. Carey was introduced and emerged from the big doors wearing them.

And they stayed on for the whole hour, as if we were somehow too stupid to realize what was going on and needed sixty minutes’ worth of a prolonged joke that was cute for about a minute and a half.

Then there was Mimi, the outrageously-dressed coworker of Carey’s character from his old Drew Carey Show days. Mimi, in her nightmarish makeup and outfit, would never qualify as a “Barker’s Beauty,” so she, like the glasses, stayed for the whole hour, further beating the dead horse.

This year, just when you thought they wouldn’t try to top last year, they are.

It appears, from promos I’ve seen on CBS, that the Groucho glasses are gone. But in their place is an entire storyline involving Mimi.

Yes. A storyline.

Mimi, it seems, has suddenly become executive producer of the show. She immediately takes action, dumping the attractive female prize fondlers in exchange for a collection of “average” Joes that look like cast members from The Full Monty. And then there’s the monkey thing.

Announcer Rich Fields, as part of this storyline, has been replaced by a guy — likely Rich — in a monkey suit.

You have no idea how much I wish I was kidding.

This may turn out to be the funniest Price is Right episode ever imagined. Call me the skeptic.

The show has come a long way this season after a really rocky one last year. This idea, which essentially seems to be ready to turn the hour into a bad sitcom episode, might well dust off a few of those bad memories.

If you watch, I’d really like to know what you think about it. And if the show’s not your cup of tea, do you think, based on what I’ve described, that I’m being too hard on them?

1 Comment

  1. I can’t stand Drew Carey, primarily because he is King of the Beat a Dead Horse school of humor. He’s a schmuck.

    Ergo, I don’t think you’re being too hard on him. 😉

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 29 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.