Author Topic: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?  (Read 3187 times)

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Offline htmlcc92

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Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« on: May 17, 2019, 06:32:10 PM »
Not really too surprised, but sad nonetheless to see a game show put out to pasture:


https://variety.com/2019/tv/news/who-wants-to-be-a-millionaire-canceled-1203217602/
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Online howierules86

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2019, 06:38:08 PM »
Meredith Vieira's version stopped airing in my area in 2009. Never got Cedric, Crews, or Harrison here, but from the clips I've seen on YouTube, it wouldn't be must-see TV for me either way.

Offline htmlcc92

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2019, 06:39:30 PM »
My local NBC station had the show on at 6:30 p.m., but a few years back they took it off their schedule. I think eventually it did end up back on the schedule in the early afternoon.

I haven't watched it much at all since Meredith left, I really enjoyed her as host.
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Offline Off_trak

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2019, 07:04:42 PM »
Hard to believe, but Primetime Millionaire kicked off the whole wave of reality TV. Regis' version raked in viewership in the tens of millions, peaking around 30 million viewers. The show was untouchable, and then a little show called Survivor premiered... It definitely was must see tv, in its day.
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Offline PatrickRox80

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2019, 08:13:38 PM »
I'm honestly surprised the syndicated version managed to last this long. It's been on life support for at least half its run.

Offline mellongraig

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2019, 08:19:54 PM »
Problem is like many long running shows like this, due to the way that shows are being taped ahead of time, it just won't get a proper sendoff. I think this season saw a lot of production and budget cuts to the point where we didn't see a lot of huge wins.

But given the fact that the UK version has now returned, maybe the same thing could happen for the US in a rebooted fashion (although that's what the networks now seem to do is revive game shows and everything we grew up with).

Offline Roadgeek Adam

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2019, 09:11:02 PM »
Chris Harrison was a great host and did the job justice. He's not the person I would choose if it were in its prime though. Though for what the show was now, it was definitely a good hosting job.

I hope he gets more game show gigs soon.
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Offline JayC

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2019, 09:35:59 PM »
It is a bit sad to see the show go even though it is way past due. Perhaps it will be rebooted in some form down the line, maybe ABC will make a new primetime version for their Fun and Games lineup in the future.

Offline goldroadfanatic

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2019, 10:53:26 PM »
All good things must come to pass.  I've been a fan of the show since I discovered it through classmate word-of-mouth in fifth grade.

I remember when I first saw the original ABC primetime version in 2000, and I witnessed Kevin Olmstead's win in 2001, amazed at his knowledge and how he won big.  Several years later, I saw Kevin Smith's win on the syndicated run, during a rerun of the previous season, amazed at his journey to the million. 

During a family vacation to Orlando, Florida, in 2005, I attended the old "Play It!" attraction at the Walt Disney World and had a great time. I enthusiastically played the CD-ROM, board games and mobile games over the years, too.

I attended contestant searches in 2013-2014, and I made it into the contestant pool in August 2014, but I never got the call to be on the show.  However, I did attend tapings with Terry Crews and Chris Harrison in 2014-2015, which were fun to be in (I still have several souvenir pencils and show t-shirts, and I high-fived Terry when he thanked the audience for attending on one taping).

It's a shame the show is going away, but the lack of big winners the last several years really hurt the show, in my opinion.  For a show called Who Wants to be a Millionaire?, it seemed as if they tried really hard to prevent a contestant from clearing a stack of questions to win.  You'd see the occasional person win $100,000, but there hasn't been a quarter-millionaire in about a year-and-a-half, to say nothing of any bigger wins (the last $500,000 winner was back in 2013).  Also, the show was struggling in ratings against a resurgent Family Feud, while Jeopardy! and Wheel continue to hold their own.

Maybe after a hiatus, the show will return.  IIRC, in the 2014 Sony hacks, one information bit I remembered reading was once the syndicated version ends, ABC can license the show for primetime again after a two-year hiatus (someone please correct me if I'm wrong about this).  So maybe we'll see it again early next decade.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2019, 11:00:40 PM by goldroadfanatic »
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Offline tpir04

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2019, 09:55:02 AM »
Who Wants to be a Millionaire more or less initiated the era of the million-dollar giveaway shows. Without WWTBAM we wouldn't have had Greed, Twenty-One, Deal or No Deal, or any of TPIR's Million Dollar Spectacular's. WWTBAM also brought back the dim lights, dark music, and high intensity, some forty years after Twenty-One ended. From a pop-culture standpoint, the phrases used on the show crept into our vocabulary. Phrases like, "Is that your final answer?" and "I'd like to use a lifeline." became much more widespread after WWTBAM hit. In terms of ratings, Millionaire pulled in the biggest audience anybody had seen in years, and it was a national phenomenon - until Survivor hit. Coupled with Big Brother and Amazing Race just two years later, viewers swiveled the dial over to CBS. This, along with ABC's massive overexposure of WWTBAM, toppled the show off its perch. What's my take? I'm surprised it lasted twenty years, seventeen of those in syndication. Maybe I'm wrong, but it seemed that after Meredith Vieira left, Millionaire was just "there". It pulled in good-not-great audiences, and it certainly was past it's glory days. Then there was the rotating door of hosts, first Cedric, then Terry Crews, before finally settling on Chris Harrison in 2015. But it seems that it's time to move on. Who knows? Perhaps we'll see a revival of Millionaire in the future. For now, however, it's certainly tough to say goodbye to a show that, among other things, revolutionized the look and feel of prime-time game shows.
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Offline PayingTheRent

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2019, 10:26:49 AM »
I’m quite surprised syndi-Millionaire lasted this long.  The format, in all its glory, was made for primetime, not daytime.  ‘Fastest Finger’ was stripped from the beginning to better fit the show within a half hour timeframe.  The much slimmer budget meant tougher questions and occasionally less-than-super-genius contestants to ensure the top dollar amounts were rarely reached.

Over time, the format underwent changes that robbed the show of its roots, from the timed questions to the complete overhaul that brought about the shuffle format, less-intense music and a much brighter set — without the hot seat — that felt far less intimidating than the show ever did in primetime.

Despite all the flaws, I commend Harrison for the excellent job he has done filling Philbin/Viera’s shoes.  With the return of the traditional format a few years back and his hosting, it felt the show was beginning to feel more normal again.  It was just too little, too late.  If we ever get a primetime revival, I hope Harrison gets the host job.  Combine him with the format the UK version has with their revival, and I believe WWTBAM would hold its own just fine in primetime again.  Joe Plinko may not even realize the show has been hiding in syndication all these years and be hooked from the beginning!
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Offline therealcu2010

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2019, 01:45:37 PM »
I actually started watching Millionaire semi-regularly this year again (via Youtube, the show doesn't air on TV here), and I actually found the difficulty all over the place. Some stacks I found ridiculously easy, others were a lot harder. The show has been better since they reverted to the classic format (albeit a bastardized version of it), but the stench of the Shuffle era was still there.

The show had a lot of issues. The awkward money ladder, the soundtrack, the bipolar difficulty, the way too bright set, the question writing itself. Chris Harrison was not one of them. I actually liked him better as a host more than Meredith. If the show gets revived in primetime, I really hope, if they can't get Regis, Chris gets the gig... he's proof of just how much better game shows are with professional hosts as opposed to comedians as emcees.

I'm not surprised the show finally got cancelled... if anything, it's long overdue. The show had long proved it wasn't suited to be stripped for syndication, especially when it took just one year for the difficulty to massively spike and for the producers to start tinkering with the rules... and nobody legitimately won the game since.
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Offline someguy23475

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2019, 02:51:49 PM »
I forgot the show was still on. The clock format is what turned me off years ago. The shuffle format was worse.

How does this get cancelled yet Funny You Should Ask which seems to draw about 14 viewers stays on? Cheaper production costs I am guessing.

Online ThomHuge

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2019, 03:28:45 PM »
Cheaper production costs I am guessing.

"Cheaper production costs plus better ratings" more likely. WWTBAM is undoubtedly expensive to produce, and if it's not drawing in viewers that well (not hard to imagine), it's not worth the price. If FYSA is cheaper to produce, it wouldn't have to do nearly as well to break even.

Offline gamesurf

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Re: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2019, 03:45:38 PM »
That's too bad.

I'd be lying if I said I watched it with any regularity, but it was comforting to know that as game show fashions come and go, there was still a relatively straightforward quiz around delivering a reliable half hour of trivia.

I’m quite surprised syndi-Millionaire lasted this long.  The format, in all its glory, was made for primetime, not daytime.  ‘Fastest Finger’ was stripped from the beginning to better fit the show within a half hour timeframe.  The much slimmer budget meant tougher questions and occasionally less-than-super-genius contestants to ensure the top dollar amounts were rarely reached.

Over time, the format underwent changes that robbed the show of its roots, from the timed questions to the complete overhaul that brought about the shuffle format, less-intense music and a much brighter set — without the hot seat — that felt far less intimidating than the show ever did in primetime.

National Event Millionaire is the best Millionaire and can never be topped, but IMO syndie Millionaire never dipped too far below passable--and for a show that's endured as many budget issues, miscast contestants, miscast hosts, and rapid format changes as Millionaire has, that's paying it quite the compliment.
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