Saturday, 22 June 2013

The Big Brain Theory: Pure Reality TV

So, it's a show that shows off ingenuity and engineering intelligence... it's The Big Brain Theory. Small problem... it's a 'reality TV show'. Now that's not necessarily a bad thing. Face Off was brilliant (okay, been struggling recently), and Strip Search showed how to do a proper reality show, so it is possible.

Each week two people were selected to head up teams to meet some engineering challenge, and the losing team would disqualify one person for the big prize. (People still stuck around and helped with building, but they couldn't get the big prize, a lesser prize was still available. This is interestingly different, brought about because you do need a team, it's not one vs one.) So we do have some interesting engineering challenges, and... often unusual engineering solutions, some which worked, some which didn't.

However... because it was a team, and thus people working together... come for the science, stay for the train wreck! Interpersonal conflict, that's what people watching a science show want to see, right? One person in particular caused a lot of conflict, so guess who got featured a lot? And got a rather contentious decision made in his favour? And of course there were comments made about the other team. And... well... just lots of typical reality tv bullshit.

This show should have been better, but clearly someone thought decided that being different was too much of a risk to take.

And, rather amusingly, the show started each episode with this warning:

This program features ingenuity that could be dangerous. Do not attempt this at home.
That's right people. Do not be ingenious at home, it's too dangerous.


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