Posts filed under 'Amazing Race'

Opening credits: Change we can’t believe in

Several media outlets brought the new Simpsons credits to my attention today, and I have to say, this is just the latest in a troubling new trend of shows changing their tried-and-true opening sequences after many, many seasons.

The first culprit: ER. These are the season 1 credits:

Look how young everyone is! This is before Clooney’s Caesar haircut, and before, you know, everybody died. So they ran with a version of this intro for thirteen years. Then, in 2007, someone over at NBC decided that the classic, 43-second opening sequence was just too bulky for the New Show Populated By People We Don’t Care About Please Come Back Noah Wyle. So this is what we get (just the beginning part):

Yep. Five seconds. I can totally understand abridging the credits to fit in more content. Or cutting them down, like Friends did after a few years, because everyone knows what the song sounds like and frankly, can’t stand to listen to it even one more time (clap clap clap clap). But after thirteen years? That is so strange.

Exhibit 2: The Amazing Race. Here are the classic TAR credits (beginning about 6:30 in), including such thirteen-races-old archetypes as Plane Flying, Sun Setting, Cities With Tall Things, Shouting Indigenous Folks, and Indigenous Folks With Indigenous Livestock. And of course, the very important Final Bomp.

Sunday’s first episode of TAR 14 showcased the new credit sequence:

It’s like they suddenly remembered that Jerry Bruckheimer produces this show! And let Michael Bay handle the sound editing! It’s so bizarre and metal-y. And the Final Bomp is sadly subdued.

So the extended Simpsons intro is kind of fitting into the mold, although I’m kind of sad that the Simpsons now have a nicer TV than I do. The credit sequence for The Simpsons has always been more malleable than most shows’ (and I’m not a hardcore Comic Book Guy about the show) so this doesn’t really bother me, but you know, sometimes you need continuity in television. Which is why I watched five episodes of Sports Night on DVD yesterday.

February 17th, 2009

The More You Know: Cold precipitation edition

I miss summer already.

2 comments October 25th, 2007

The More You Know: Airplane edition

I’m hopping on a plane at 2:30.  Where could I be going?

2 comments May 8th, 2007

The More You Know: Hello Again edition

Remember that movie with Shelly Long? What ever happened to her?

2 comments April 4th, 2007

BJ and Tyler win the Amazing Race!

I didn't see the last 6 episodes thanks to my Berlin-based lifestyle, but I read the news today, oh boy. BJ Averell, my friend who would have been voted most likely to star on a reality TV show–if they did superlatives at Harvard–won $1 million on The Amazing Race 9 along with Best Friend Tyler. Congratulations BJ and Tyler. Have you ever considered financing independent films?

May 18th, 2006

Reality TV and Me

Last night was the premiere of the the Amazing Race 9 on CBS. I’ve never watched this show before, but I had to this time around because I know one of the contestants from college.

So, can you guess who I know? Well, we can eliminate right off the bat the frat boys from California or the sluts from Staten Island. It’s not the old married couple, the extraordinarily grating Tall Southern Sisters, the “just friends” gay dudes, the psychotic dentist and his wife/hygenist, or the intensely aerobic black couple. So is it “Ken and Barbie,” the too-perfect couple with the popular kids attitude? Is it one of the overly-affectionate nerds? Is the mother-daughter latina combo? Or is it one of the bearded, colorful hippies?

It’s one of the “hippies,” BJ! I know, smart money would have been on the nerds. Suckah!

The thing is, I would really not describe BJ and Tyler as hippies, and not just because I know BJ and know that he is not a hippie. The whole show was an interesting look into how people judge each other on little or no information. I would describe their look and attitude more generally as “wacky Muppet hipster.” Are hippies really known for wearing pink frilled tuxedo shirts and colorful patterned pants? Also, they’re clearly fast-running smart thrill-seekers. Hippies? Really? It’s just the long hair and beards. People get fooled, and then are clearly shocked when BJ and Tyler turn out to be pretty awesome at the game. Yeah #2! Woooohoooo!

Let’s compare and contrast BJ and Tyler with the winners of last night’s challenge, the frat boys, Eric and Jeremy. Basis for the comparison: How they comport themselves when meeting the Staten Island Sluts for the first time.

BJ and Tyler: (At the ticket counter. Casual.) Hey, what’s up, we’re BJ and Tyler. We’re Dani and Danielle. Dani and Danielle? Really? Can we call you Double D? Sure! (laughs all around)

Eric and Jeremy: (In front of a hotel, as the girls’ cab drives away. Hyperactive.) HEY! I’M ERIC AND THIS IS JEREMY! (the girls mock and laugh at them)

I think we can see who the clear winner in that competition is.

Right now I’m rooting for BJ and Tyler, obviously, and the mother-daughter latinas. Do I like the mom-daughter group because they remind me of the Gilmore Girls? Maybe. The nerds almost got my vote, but they were too busy kissing each other all the time to really give their all to the race. I also kind of like the Staten Island Sluts as dark horse candidates.

Coming later this month, ANOTHER guy I know from college debuts in a reality TV show. And that one’s sure to be embarrassing for everyone involved and everyone who knows him. Just kidding, you know I love ya, Hunter Maats.

March 1st, 2006


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