Wednesday, April 18, 2012

THE H_BG_B__N __ _TT_E M_NDS: According to Salon's Willa Paskin, the following things are wrong with Wheel of Fortune:

* No one explains the rules

* Pat Sajak does not ask people what they will do with the money (although some people volunteer this information)

* There are often both male and female and both black and white contestants (although never more than three of any one kind)

* Grandmothers have been enjoying the show for years

* The puzzles involve well-known and, ultimately, guessable phrases

* People can both win money and lose money very quickly

* It does not provide a sufficient parable for the American viewer to understand the dangers of oversaturation of collateralized-debt obligations or credit default swaps

* When an individual wins a car, they are not made sufficiently aware of the long-term costs associated with ownership

* Americans still watch the show despite the fact that Vanna White has gotten older in the 30 years that she has been on the show

* It is unclear whether one has to specially purchase a diaresis


  1. bill.8:20 PM

    Also describes Willa Paskin's prose: as if created by a person pairing adjectives and nouns found in a dictionary for second graders

  2. isaac_spaceman9:28 PM

    This is an awesome summary of an article I haven't read.  It doesn't make me want to read the article, but it makes me glad I read the summary.  Win-win!

  3. The show has gone downhill since they got rid of the prize rooms in which one spent one's winnings -- even though, of course, Sajak never bothered explaining the working conditions of the manufacturers of the goods or the carbon impact of their shipment to the studio.

  4. Joseph J, Finn9:59 PM

    Can I complain just a bit about their bizzare definition of "thing" as a category?  For instance, "psychic powers" was a thing the other week.  I have to call BS on that one; I think a thing should be a) an object of some kind and b) real.

  5. Just a general, heartfelt "like."

  6. Also, TPE, your tagline kind of makes me need to see "Next Stop Wonderland" again.

  7. The Pathetic Earthling11:24 PM

    I was just showing the Little Earthling a YouTube of a prize room section last night.

  8. Genevieve1:18 AM

    I loved those prize rooms.  Even when they had to spend the last of their winnings on ceramic dalmations.

  9. Genevieve1:19 AM

    Just saw it for the first time last month!  Heartily enjoyed.

  10. Jenn.7:45 AM

    Don't you mean especially when they *had* to spend the last of their winnings on ceramic Dalmatians? I used to cheer for that.

  11. Fred App8:36 AM

    Alas, this summary was so great that I ignored my instincts and clicked to the link, just to see if the article's cluelessness was being exaggerated. Sadly, it wasn't. "Perverse attitudes about money?" Isn't that a prerequisite for all game shows? Exactly what kind of politically correct lesson about money is being taught by, say, "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?"

  12. Joseph J, Finn9:02 AM

    If there's more of an epitome of mid-to-late 90's Miramax midlevel indies than that or Brothers McMullen, I'd like to know.

  13. That movie left me a little bit in love wih Hope Davis and a lot in love with Bossa Nova.

  14. Marsha10:45 AM

    I honestly just came to the comments section to lament the lack of ceramic dalmations. My sister and I got ENDLESS enjoyment over debating how we would spend our winnings in the prize room.

  15. One can argue that Millionaire tells us about risk and consequences, because if you lose money, it's because you took a risk, and you can always choose not to take the risk by walking away or to modify the risk downward (through a lifeline).  While you can choose to spin or not to spin on Wheel, it's largely a pure-chance situation as to what you win.