Saturday, March 24, 2007


I've been watching the show, "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" on FOX. I don't have the inclination to describe every detail of the show's format, but I will say that you have but to answer 10 elementary-level questions (split between 1st-through-5th grade categories, two questions per) for the chance to win $500,000, with a shot at a cool million if you can answer a hypothetical 11th bonus question. I call it hypothetical because I still haven't seen anyone make it that far.

I don't know how they screen the contestants for this show, but something tells me it involves hitting them on the head with some kind of mallet. These are the stupidest people on television. I noticed that they take an extra long time answering ANYTHING, even when they know the answer. The fact that it happens for every question leads me to believe that they are probably coached to do so, in order to heighten the drama and really fill that hour slot. But they can't have possibly fixed this many people to walk away with their winnings from so many insanely easy questions. The other night, a woman was going through the questions, working her way from the 1st grade ones to the 5th. When she hit 4th Grade Algebra, she was asked this:

If Y=3X and 3X=12, what does Y equal?

Now, I don't know if this question even qualifies as actual algebra. A 4-year-old could solve this using simple logic (something that actually comes with most human brains). The woman theorized that the answer might be 4, then walked away with her winnings. I don't remember how much money she had, but it was too much. Then earlier tonight, I was watching the rest of that episode, and the next contestant was actually doing pretty good. She worked her way down the board from 5th to 1st grade, so that she could use her free helps on the harder questions, which is already smart in and of itself. At one point, they mentioned that she used to work for the U.S. Army. She got everything right, and it all came down to the 10th and last question that would win her a half a mil. The category was 1st Grade World Geograpy.

What is the only continent that is also a country?

She milked the moment in typical dramatic game show fashion. At one point, she mused aloud that "North America is also a country..." Wait, what? If she was playing dumb, this bitch was good. But as it turned out, she had not one fucking clue what the answer was. She then proclaimed that 3 was her lucky number, so she was going to walk away with her winnings of $300,000. When asked to throw out a guess for the hell of it, she said, "All of 'em!"

Something is not right with this show. Is this real? Like, did that really happen in reality? I just don't know what to think.


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