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Treasure Hunters: Hunters begin their quest (series premiere)

by Keith McDuffee, posted Jun 18th 2006 10:59PM
treasure hunters(S01E01) Motorola! Ask.com! Orbitz.com! This show didn't spend any time at all in hiding the blatant sponsor plugs anywhere they had a chance. "A laptop, specially equipped to access Ask.com and their unique search engine technology!" Holy crap, can I get me that special technology, because I'll be damned if I can get anything with this lousy desktop I've got here with lousy ol' Google.

If you're already a big fan of this show, don't worry; it won't be me who'll review this show every week. I learned my lesson when trying to cover that abomination known as American Inventor. I'll at least do my best to give others an idea of how this show works.

Basically take Amazing Race, give the prize a buried treasure theme to it and make teams of three instead of two, and you have Treasure Hunters. The teams have their cute little nicknames like "The Southie Boys" and "Wild Hanlons", each with their own little quirks, strengths and weaknesses. Oh, and also throw in a mention of the Motorola Razr phone, Ask.com and Orbitz.com multiple times throughout the show, on shirts, on laptop screens and later, probably tattooed on someone's arse. Who says they're getting a "Motorola message" on their phone?

I will say that the only saving grace for this show is the clues that are later revealed to us viewers as being right in front of the hunters' faces all along. The cylinder/map combo clue that nobody found really was a neat touch, and for the sake of the viewers, I hope they do it a lot more.

Anyway, I'd go on and tell you all about the contestants, who they are and what they all went through, but I'll let you go ahead and see that during the recap hour before the next episode. I might give this another week of my time, but I'll leave the reviewing to someone else.

Oh, I have to go now -- got a Motorola message coming in.

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Wild Ben Hanlon

The Wild Hanlons are back to kick some serious Cartoon ass in reality form. My question is are you tube ready for it?Go to NBC tresure Hunter board are get ready to see some other network boards, This is just a hint from the "Wild Hanlon'Future!
"Wild Ben Hanlon"

May 02 2007 at 1:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sherril Lucignani

I really enjoy the show. I learned alot from the show. I have enjoyed playing the game online for 10,000. and 200.000. I hope the show comes back next year.

August 04 2006 at 5:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

An hour of this show feels like 6! Sooooooooooooo boring. In the Amazing Race...it's so fast paced that the hour flies by...this show is a sleeper and after the first 2 episodes...I've had enough.

June 28 2006 at 12:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jason P.

Just wanted to say, excellent analysis, Rick. Why aren't you working as a reality show consultant? Treasure Hunters could use you, I'd bet.

June 21 2006 at 3:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Almost switched off when the Motorola/Ask.com/Orbitz product placements got their own introduction (believe it or not NBC, some of us don't watch TV for the commercials). Actually switched off when the second team (three attractive girls) were lovingly-shot stripping to their string bikinis and swimming (the latter filmed with underwater cameras). Lowest-common denominator TV? Not for me, thank you.

June 19 2006 at 4:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Man did I want to like this show. It seemed like a clear cut The Amazing Race rip-off, but I am a big fan of TAR and would have liked something to fill that void over the summer. This might do, but it is off to a bad start. The pacing is off. The host is horrible. The editing is bizarre. The product placement is annoying and overdone. The teams certainly seemed diverse, but individual personalities did not emerge in the first hours, and while the personality dynamics of a group of three are very different then a group of two, which you have on TAR, the show did not seem to do anything to capitalize on this. They needed to create situations in which there were choices requiring intra-team cooperation or team to team competition. Instead of plopping two teams in a comfortable bus and telling them to work together. Perhaps, on each bus, the teams should have had to negotiate and agree on something to get the bus to go faster or more directly. For example, one of the teams gets comfortable beds and good food and airconditioning on their side of the bus while the others are forced to ride confined in a small dark cubicle and if they chose not to do so the bus would slow down 5 MPH for each one opting out. Or under the same situation, one team needed to send two into the cubicles and the other team one, creating a neeed to problem solve. Finally the contestants. Lets face it, the casting was terrible. I understand you need different capacities to make it look interesting, but the Hanlons and the Browns are so short of the mark it is unfair. For them to stay in the hunt, in the end, would require some pretty fancy gerry-rigging. The fit teams are fit but not very sexy, the sexy teams are blandly attractive but not very fit. The smart teams, sorry there weren't any smart teams.
Two hours after two hours of viewing, I can remember the names of only 7 of the ten teams easily, and can only place one face with a name and a team and only because his name is Frances and he seemed to act like an ass, hence France the talking mule on the "Genius Team" Even more of a negative factor, the first hour of the show did nothing more than establish an order for pairing teams up. They certainly did not fly from Alaska and Hawaii to Nebraska in those planes we saw them taking off in. One can only assume then, that each location met up and flew on a common charter flight. If that is the case, they probably bussed them over from a common hotel to the Lincoln Capital area. Any shots of the teams there, running or in some way seeming to compete, would therefore have been totally staged and not at all close to the reality of the events. "Reality" shows re-stage reality all the time, but in this case, the reality isnt be re-staged, it is being staged for dramatic purpose only, and not very dramatically.
On the plus side; Presidential theme to this show was obvious, well developed and utilized down to the Jeffersonian cane. There were some dead ends and mis-directions which might add to the fun in the future. The idea of mental puzzles as well as physical tasks adds to the flavor.
With some drastic reconsiderations, this may be a show that can return next year, leaner, faster and more interesting and challenging. This year will probably be more of the mess these first two shows exhibited. So chances for next year seem slim, but I hope they let it run out for this year.

June 19 2006 at 12:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I see it as a rip-off of the Amazing Race, and not a good one!

June 19 2006 at 12:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Don Perreault

This show was horrible.

June 19 2006 at 12:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

For me and my wife, this show was two hours of confusion. Jumping here, there and everywhere, at a very quick pace (too quick for us). The guy hosting the show is just horrible. I gave it the full two hour effort, but I won't be going back for any more of this (??????????) whatever it is trying to be.

June 19 2006 at 9:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The host is a terrible choice. Is he a robot? Can we have someone with personality? (Anderson Cooper on The Mole was fantastic for example, dry humor with a serious tone.) I agree, the blatant ad placement is a bit annoying, could be a bit more subtle please. But on the whole it wasnt too bad.

June 19 2006 at 9:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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