Snap judgment: ABC's 'Duel'

Monica_lWith all of your favorite scripted shows disappearing from TV like holiday-colored M&Ms camouflaged against a holiday-themed tablecloth, you might be inclined to try something new, like ABC’s Duel. This is not a sexy/embarrassing soap opera about King Arthur’s court, as I was hoping. Rather, Duel, which premiered last night, is a treacherously slow-paced game show that’ll be on every night this week until Sunday, at which point one of the carefully fabricated "real people" contestants will win however much is in "the jackpot." The show is basically trivia combined with poker combined with standing in line at the DMV with a full bladder for three hours. I was only able to get through last night’s 90-minute debut because I was also playing online crossword puzzles. It’s like I wasn’t even watching TV. Highly recommended!

The only reason to catch this nonsense live instead of play its mildly entertaining online version is that it’s fascinating when the contestants attempt to explain to host Mike Greenberg why they chose their particular opponents from a selection of three. Why even ask? They obviously just picked whoever seemed the dumbest. I’m hoping that eventually the well of euphemisms will run dry and they’ll just admit things like, "She struck me as a dim bulb," or "That man’s clearly a hick."

There’s also the added benefit of suddenly looking up at your screen and wondering if ESPN anchor Greenberg is actually playing a renowned faith healer, bestowing a magical stream of NFL statistics onto the damned (pictured). Nope, turns out Monica was just completely freaking out from the questionable glory of being on TV. Ewww, they’re touching.

Did anyone get through this show? How about this post?


Comments (30 total) Add your comment
Page: 1 2
  • Christina

    I made it to the first commercial break then turned it off. There was nothing enjoyable about it

  • Christina

    I made it to the first commercial break then turned it off. There was nothing enjoyable about it

  • becky

    I love your writing Annie. You and the girl who wrote Eat, Pray, Love should collaborate on a project :) That would be a hoot

  • QueenC

    I’m ashamed to have watched the whole thing. The questions weren’t even that interesting or difficult. Also, the contestant banter was scripted, right??? I can’t believe those people are actually getting money.

  • Ben

    Saw the show as well…Horribly done show. The contestants look like extractions from a carnival side show and the death march-like pace is too much like dying from flesh-eating bacteria (I would imagine).

  • DanOregon

    I’m still trying to figure out where strategy plays into this thing,
    I’m tired of the fake “suspense/cliffhanger” cut to commercials.
    Between Show Me The Money, that show Kimmel hosted where the audience kept yelling “White!, White!, White!” and this one, at least ABC is getting a lot of use out of that set.

  • suntrap

    The show – bleh. But I did just spend 30 minutes (at work) playing the online game.

  • ian

    What is up with dreadfully slow gameshows now? I blame Millionaire for this trend. Does everything really need to be that suspenseful? Do they honestly believe that people are sitting on the edge of their seats in anticipation? This neww habit of drawing a 15 minute idea into an hour (hour and a half in this ridiculous case) show needs to stop. I’m still trying to figure out the hook/premise for this show. Enough with the millionaire-esque dark-set/suspensful lighting/slow paced/ lame hosted game shows… gimme Plink-o anyday!

  • mark in nyc

    treacherously slow-paced indeed! Youknow it is bad when a player last night said “get onwith it already”!
    Seriously, this happened three times last night: Both contestants choose the same answers. The host Mr. non-personality told us all that they both chosse the same answers, read off what those answers were…then went to break.
    PICK UP THE PACE DUEL! IT MIGHT BE INTERESTING IF IT WENT QUICKER! THE DUELS SHOULD TAKE TEN MIN TOPS! NOT A HALF HOUR A DUEL!

  • WALT MILOS

    IF IT WAS NOT FOR THE WRITERS STRIKE ABC WOULD HAVE SAT ON THIS SNOOZER OF A GAME SHOW! JUST AS THEY DID WITH JIMMY KIMMELS GAME SHOW “SET FOR LIFE”! THEY WOULD HAVE BURNED IT OFF DURING THE SUMMER! THE GAME SHOW SET IS TOO BIG IT WAS HARD TO TELL WHAT WAS GOING ON! THE HOST WAS SO BORING! THE CONTESTANTS WERE SO NASTY, I HOPE NO ON WINS THE MILLION AND HALF DOLLARS!

  • Snarf

    Meh. I decided it would be more fun to slowly gouge out my eyeball with a spork.

  • Jeremy

    My problem with all the new game shows is the pacing. Duel was a little better than most in that area, 1 vs. 100 would be a great show if they asked about 4 times as many questions.
    The other problem is that they are complete guessing games. The questions on power of 10 are un-knowable, there are no questions on deal or no, and that Kimmel piece of junk.
    Here’s my theory. They want to tout huge jackpots, but there’s a danger they might actually have to give all that money away, so they make the shows creep along and add music to add fake suspense. I blame Millionaire. Long live Jeopardy

  • WH

    Eyes–can’t–stay–open–

  • MsDaisy

    Greenie, back to ESPN with you. This show was painful.

  • Steve

    I agree about annoying slow paced game shows these days. Take a look at a truly classic game show (Original Family Feud, Match Game, Jeopardy, etc.) and you’ll find that they all move much faster and are far more interesting.
    I’ll stick with Cash Cab on the Discovery Channel. Ben Bailey is a perfect host: he keeps things moving and he’s entertaining.
    It was a pity about Duel since the basic concept was fine. It just needed to move 10 times faster.

Page: 1 2
Add your comment
The rules: Keep it clean, and stay on the subject - or we may delete your comment. If you see inappropriate language, e-mail us. An asterisk (*) indicates a required field.

When you click on the "Post Comment" button above to submit your comments, you are indicating your acceptance of and are agreeing to the Terms of Service. You can also read our Privacy Policy.

Latest Videos

Advertisement

From Our Partners

TV Recaps

Powered by WordPress.com VIP