Kids game re-invented for hot new game show
- Last Updated: 12:10 PM, June 27, 2012
- Posted: 11:53 PM, June 26, 2012
Welcome to TV’s first “musical chairs” series not aimed at the kindergarten set.
It’s called “Oh Sit!” and premieres in August on The CW. Co-created by reality vet Phil Gurin (“Shark Tank,” “The Singing Bee”) — and originally titled “Extreme Musical Chairs” — it’s already generating industry buzz with its adult take on the classic kid’s game.
“Musical chairs has been played for centuries in almost every country on earth . . . but this is not a kid’s game,” says Gurin.
“It’s definitely musical chairs — but it’s musical chairs on steroids.”
Gurin, who co-created “Oh Sit!” with Richard Joel and Deena Dill, says there are many elements that differentiate the show from the familiar version of the game, in which kids race to sit in a circle of chairs when the music stops.
“It’s done on a giant indoor sound stage [in LA] with a giant circular obstacle course, and there’s a huge studio audience and a house band,” Gurin says.
“Because it’s musical chairs and not ‘Ring Around the Rosie’ we have the house band, which we’re calling The FOS Band, and we’ll have guest musical acts.
“And in a show called ‘Oh Sit!’ you can guess what ‘FOS’ stands for.”
The hour-long show features not only 12 contestants (six men and six women) but three hosts (Jamie Kennedy, former “Extra” correspondent/host Tanika Ray and Jessi Cruickshank) and four referees.
“It’s kind of like a big circus,” Gurin says. “The contestants race around the circular obstacle course and earn money every time they complete an obstacle . . . and they have to reach ‘Chair Island’ when the music stops.
“Each ‘chair’ has different money values and the contestants have to cross a bridge over a deep moat to get to ‘Chair Island,’ ” he says. “If you don’t get to your chair you’re eliminated, and if you earn the least amount of money in a race you’re eliminated.”
Each episode of “Oh Sit!” will feature five races — and the competition can get fierce, Gurin says.
(The CW has ordered 10 episodes of the show.)
“The obstacles are changed in every race and the number of chairs are reduced, just like in kindergarten,” he says. “The men and women compete head-to-head . . . there’s a roller-derby feel to the show.
“There’s a lot of physical contact but not unsportsmanlike conduct,” he says. “The guys and the girls are kind of rough with each other — throwing each other onto the floor, into the water and into the obstacles, which is kind of funny.”
The contestants range in age from 18 to 44 years old.
“We purposely tried to have a nice cross-section of people — regular folks, not super-athletes and not super non-athletes,”Gurin says.
The top “Oh Sit!” prize is roughly $50,000.
“Somebody can earn a lot of money but not be the last one sitting,” Gurin says.
“Having the money doesn’t mean anything — it’s all about getting that last chair.”