Well two weeks into his term as host of The Price Is Right, Drew Carey has certainly made the show very different. Look we all knew TPIR would be different, but is TOO different good or bad?
First off the set is fantastic. I love it. It’s a perfect blend of that 1970’s old game show with a new look that doesn’t look stupid (see the blue/pink/purple turn table of the last 5 years of Barker’s reign). The use of the roving camera that was seen in primetime specials is now a regular thing and the theme music has been updated. The microphone is wireless too.
As for Drew himself?
First the positives:
+ Drew is a fresh face. Sure it doesn’t seem like TPIR without Bob Barker, but let’s be realistic, Barker hasn’t been himself since he had his stroke. Watch videos on youtube of Barker 10 or more years ago and you’ll see how much better the interaction with contestants is. CBS, Fremantle, and Barker himself (as exectutive producer) cut drastic time off the show over the last decade that eliminated extras, but still. Take the intro lately with Barker. He’d come through door 2, get the mic, bow, say “I welcome you to the Price is Right”, tell the audience thank you, and then say “here is the first item up for bids today”. It NEVER changed. Long ago he did a short monologue.
This may seem like I’m just bashing Barker, but my point is that Drew is his own person and brings a fresh new take on TPIR.
+ He’s not trying to be Bob Barker. Thank goodness because if Drew Carey was trying to be like Bob, this show would be cancelled. He’s got his own ways of playing games for instance; On 1/2 off during the reveal he has the contestant say “alacazam!”, On One Away he refers to the “ladies” instead as “The mighty sound effects person”.
+ Another comedian hosting a game show. I love it. Comedy being brought to game shows is the best thing to happen to shows in a long time. Drew does his job as emcee, but still manages to throw in on the fly comedy bits where necessary.
+ Showing Rich on camera. For some reason Bob Barker at one point stopped putting announcer Rod Roddy on camera and essentially stopped having conversation with him altogether. Why? I don’t know. When Roddy passed away and they found Rich Fields, it stayed the same and Rich was on camera on his birthday and if we are lucky for 5 seconds after his final line of the show. Drew Carey at least is acknowledging Rich with the use of his full name. Perhaps in the future there will be more interaction. On another note, Drew mentions the models by name quite frequently as well.
– Easily the one that bugs me the most is his intro and outtro from commercials. For an hour long show that goes to commercial break 9 times, it gets extremely annoying to hear “we’ll be back with more Price is right after this” so frequently in an hour. Even worse to me is when they return from commercial he says “Welcome back to the Price is Right”. C’mon Drew, mix it up a bit.
– Knowledge of games is low. Last I heard, Drew still only knows about half the games. I’ve already seen sets of repeats on the show in 2 weeks. That’s not good. There are over 70 games in the current rotation and while some are played more than others, there should be as vast a variety as possible. As a loyal friend and true of the show, I know every single game inside and out and exactly how to explain each and every one of them. Sure it takes some work and there is a lot of pressure for Drew, but it’s not that difficult, or at least I don’t think it should be. This is the downside to getting Drew Carey as opposed to the guy I said should be hosting it, Todd Newton.
– Non Exciting reveals. As much as I say how great it is that Drew is NOT Bob Barker, there is one area I’d like to see more resemblance. Barker was the king of the false reveal. Take Golden Road for example. A guy is about to win a 90k Dodge Viper. Bob is about to pull the tab out to reveal the price “Let’s see if you’re a winn….are you going to drive this around campus?!?” He’d fail to show the price but ask another question. “Alright now we’ll see if that Viper is your….Who’s gonna ride with you in this?!?!?”
Drew doesn’t have to do that, but he just gets to the point with little to no suspense at all.
Overall I’m enjoying TPIR but it just seems like an entirely different show. They need to get some Million Dollar Spectaculars on the air soon to help promote the show even more.