Monday, June 2, 2008

Holy Mole-y

You guys. You do not even realize how excited I am about a certain piece of reality television returning to the airwaves tonight. TONIGHT!

"The Mole" is one of the best examples of smart reality programming, and I'll tell you why: viewers aren't just viewing. We're participants. And I don't mean participate like we "participate" in American Idol and call in our votes. With "The Mole," you are, in a sense, playing along with the contestants, and reasoning and deducing right along with them.

The basic premise of "The Mole" is this: 12 people are competing for money. Nothing new, right? Actually, in the case of "The Mole," is that part of the game is all about earning the very money that one contestant will win. They use teamwork to complete various challanges and tests. With each task that they complete, more money goes into the group pot. The person who wins the game wins the all money. How do you win the game? Figure out the identity of the Mole.

The Mole tries to sabotage the games and keep the team from winning money. But they have to be crafty about it, because their first objective is to not be discovered. They may purposely lose a game for the team one day, then lead the team to victory the next day. It's all about shifting the blame and keeping the other players guessing. If any player does poorly on a task, the other contestants will instantly suspect them of being the Mole. That's perfect for the real Mole, because the more people who are suspecting the wrong players, the less that discover the true identity of the Mole. At the end of each episode, the players all take a quiz about facts of the Mole: What was the Mole wearing at breakfast? Who was sitting next to the Mole in the car? And ultimately: Who is the Mole? This forces the players into copious note-taking, because even if they know who the Mole is, they still have to answer the questions correctly. The player that does the worst on the quiz is sent home, being the latest victim of the Mole.

I first started watching "The Mole" when it first aired, back in 2001. This is before reality tv hit it truly big. This is also before I was even allowed to watch television on a weeknight, so I had to be stealthy about it....

To get back into the swing of things and remind myself how the previous Moles had manuevered the game, I bought cheap copies of the first season of "The Mole" as well as "Celebrity Mole: Hawaii." Ask anyone who has been around me in the week or so: it's all I've been able to talk about. And now that we get a brand new season to figure out a brand new Mole, I have a feeling it will continue to be all I talk about!

A few tips for tonight's episode: The Mole will probably not throw the first few games, meaning there won't likely be any clues tonight. If they do mess things up, it's going to be really small things; the Mole won't want to be too obvious so early on. Pay attention to details, because the show does like to slip in clues. Also, don't listen to the contestants. The ones that are wrong can be very passionate in their reasons for why they think someone is the Mole, and they can be pretty convincing. But remember that the smarter players will rarely reveal who they're really onto as the Mole, and may even convince you that they think it's someone else. It's all a ruse. Take nothing at face value!

Enjoy! You know I will be....
(No, I didn't draw this awesomeness.)

4 comments:

~lady j said...

i have thought of you every single time i've seen the commercial in the past week. which has been a lot. :) i hope the kickoff was wildly entertaining!

Whitney said...

At least I know one of the Morby women will indulge in this piece of small screen genius along with me. Ginger said she would "try to catch it." A true fan would make time. I guess we see where her loyalties lie. My guess is Bobby. I don't know why, but that is my hunch. Also....don't like Nicole. AT. ALL. She can take her OB/GYN self back to the hospital...I'm sure EVERYONE loves her there. Can you imagine her getting her hands dirty with placenta and what not? Hmm....that's a head scratcher. What did you think about last night?

Ginger said...

And yet somehow I heard it wasn't all it was cracked up to be...

Don't worry, I'm still enjoying the joy that is Alias Season 3.

Marshall: "Mr. Sloane… hi. It’s been a while…and a lot has happened. I mean, at first you were evil, now you’re good…so you claim…not that I don’t...trust you, it’s just… How are you? "

Austin & Ashley Evans said...

I am also a HUGE fan of the Mole and glad to see there are others out there!! I havent seen this week's episode yet but will be watching tonight! Cant wait!