Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

TELEVISION & RADIO | TUNED IN

A tall order to fill a time slot

May 27, 2003|Mark Sachs | Times Staff Writer

If a camel is what results when a committee is convened to design a horse, the stunt-loving, trash-talking, contestant-quizzing game show "Dog Eat Dog" is what happens when a panel is asked to fill an hour of TV programming.

That's no joke. "Dog," which launches a new season at 8 tonight on NBC with back-to-back hourlong episodes, comes to us from the producers of "Fear Factor" and "The Weakest Link" and the pedigree shows.

The program, hosted by the sizzling but occasionally screechy Brooke Burns, takes place on a massive stage boasting a 30-foot tower and a 300,000-gallon water tank. With a hooting and hollering studio audience looking on, six contestants compete in a series of timed solo stunts that require physical and mental skills. The six vote on who will tackle each stunt, and if it is completed successfully, the winner gets to banish a rival into the "Dog Pound."

In one segment, for example, brawny plumber Paul must brace himself for two minutes within a plexiglass frame suspended high over the water tank. He begins in an upright position, but then the trivia quiz commences, and with each wrong answer, the frame is tilted at a more precarious angle. Can anyone say "splash"?

An interesting wrinkle in all this foolishness is that the contestants spend a day before the show at boot camp, where rivalries build as they learn a bit of one another's strengths and weaknesses. We see clips from the session during the show, which help to explain the voting strategies. The game continues until there's a lone contestant pitted against five Pounders. More trivia ensues, and the last dog standing wins $25,000.

Like the camel that can carry you from Point A to B dependably if not stylishly, "Dog Eat Dog" will get you from 8 to 10 p.m. But with much inane banter between Burns and the contestants and a seen-it-before feel to the stunts, it's a bumpy trip.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|