This past Wednesday’s episode of Who Wants to be a Millionaire? was a pretty good example of a game show that’s still got it after all these years. Jeremy Blais from Matunuck, RI walked away from the show with one of the biggest amounts of money that could be won.
What really had me enjoying this ride was the raw, genuine emotion from everyone involved. From Jeremy himself, to his family, the rest of the audience, and of course Meredith helped out with her method of hosting. And Jeremy was a really knowledgeable, and in some cases, lucky, contestant.
As more and more of these new primetime high jackpot game shows evolve, I’ve grown more and more sick of the constant overdramatic atmospheres. The obnoxious contestants who are seemingly booked for the sake of being obnoxious, the gimmicks, the ridiculous commercial tosses, which are supposed to add to the suspense, but in actually just ruin any suspense that was there to begin with (I’m talking to you, Who’s Still Standing!). I could go on.
Well, considering this is Millionaire, there was none of that here. Even with my issues with the questions being shuffled, the series proves that it can still put on a high-stakes event properly. Millionaire was one of the first game shows to have the flashing lights, the heart pounding music and the dark studio, and for the most part, at least in this country, they’ve been one of the only ones to put out the proper amount of dark intensity and feeling and still have it pay off in the end.
This was also the perfect balance of levity within the drama. Take for example when Jeremy accidentally high-fived Meredith too hard, and Meredith had me on pins and needles as she did everyone else when Jeremy guessed “Pizza” as the answer to the $250,000 question.
Some people might be wondering, especially since it‘s been quite a while since we‘ve had a top prize winner here, “What’s the big deal? People get up to the second tier somewhat often.“ It’s true, that does happen. And, well, no, Jeremy might not have made it to the top. But $250,000 is a great accomplishment and it was a very entertaining half-hour.