Do you suffer from fear of heights? Ever gone up in a tall building, looked down, and experienced severe vertigo? Does the thought of falling off a skyscraper give you nightmares? If so, the absurd new ABC game show “Downfall” is not for you.
The stakes are high in “Downfall” and not just because contestants are vying for upwards of $1 million in cash and prizes. The setting for this beat-the-clock quiz show from Freemantle Media North America (the company behind “The Price is Right”, “Family Feud”, and “Let’s Make a Deal”) is the top of a big city skyscraper and when contestants get a question wrong their winnings are going to get tossed over the side.
That alone strikes me as being a bit dangerous for those below, especially if those prizes include such traditional game show prizes as refrigerators and automobiles. Heck, even chucking a year’s supply of Rice-A-Roni, the San Francisco Treat, off the top of a skyscraper could achieve terminally velocity from that height.
Apparently, best I can figure, competing atop a skyscraper is supposed to severely unnerve players and make it difficult for them to concentrate on the questions. I presume this means the screening process for potential contestants will focus on those suffering from acrophobia, already nervous nellies, and people easily intimidated by strong gusts of wind.
But here’s where “Downfall” really gets scary and dangerous. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the plan is to also have contestants eliminated from the show by taking a “controlled fall” off the side of the skyscraper. What exactly that entails has not yet been revealed. It’s not even a guarantee that aspect of the show will actually come to fruition due to a wide variety of safety and legal issues.
They will have to work out those details soon because “Downfall” is scheduled to premiere Tuesday, June 29th at 9/8 Central following ABC’s real-life version of Idiocracy‘s “Ow! My Balls!”, otherwise known as “Wipeout”.
Remember the fake game show in The Running Man called “Climbing for Dollars” that involved trying to climb a rope to grab money at the time without falling where vicious dogs wait to maul you? We’re almost there.
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