First off, I did a guest post over at designsbymhari.wordpress.com, you can see pictures of my cat, my hideous green shag carpet, and evidence of my obsession with obscure Tom Cruise movies. Plus all the lovely stuff she usually posts when I’m not mucking things up with my strangeness.
Alright, a review as promised. It’s not as grandiose as I originally planned, but hey, I work with what I can find. Today we venture for the first time into the magical land of….Legends of the Hidden Temple!
Yes, Nickelodeon’s famous game show that appears to be what would happen if they let Indiana Jones executive produce Double Dare. What I have below is a review of one episode’s final round, the “Temple Run.” It’s the part of the show where one team actually goes into the Hidden Temple in search of whatever the hell artifact is the focus the episode.
Why am I doing just the Temple Run? It’s the only part of episodes I can find on Youtube. I’ll make you all a deal though, if someone finds and links me to full episodes, I’ll review a whole one. Trust me, I’m just as disappointed as you, I was looking forward to a history lesson from Olmec and the chance to mock children as they fail to answer trivia questions about said lesson.
Well, lets begin our grand temple run:
Meet Kirk Fogg, our intrepid host. I guess he’s supposed to look like some manner of adventurer, but really his outfit just makes it look like it’s casual Friday at Nickelodeon Studios.
The team that has made it to the Temple is the Orange Iguanas, which I’m pretty sure is a rare appearance, as I didn’t even remember that was a team color. For those keeping score at home, the Red Jaguars had the most appearances in temple runs.
Before they can begin their temple run however, Kirk has Olmec give them some information about how to get to Butch Cassidy’s Silver Horseshoe, which is apparently this episode’s artifact de jour. Alright Olmec, let’s rock.
Olmec’s first recommended stop is The Pit of Despair. With a name like that, you might think this is going to be an uphill battle for the Iguanas, but don’t worry, it’s just a glorified ball pit.
From there, the contestants could go to the Throne Room, where they will then gain access to either the Heart Room, or the Treacherous Swamp(another ball pit) Going through the Treacherous Swamp will lead into…The Dark Forest!
In the forest, you can reach into frightening trees to find a key, or just break through a wall to get into The Mine Shaft. Really? Is there even a debate there. Go up the Mine Shaft and enter in the Viper Room, which is apparently this season’s name for “Room where you smash pots to find things.” Sometimes it’s scrolls, sometimes it’s keys, today it’s snakes. Whatever. From there, you go into the most famous temple room…The Shrine of the Silver Monkey!
Olmec simply says “Assemble the statute of the monkey”, like it’s that fucking easy. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an aspect of a game show give people as hard a time as The Shrine of the Silver Monkey did to these kids. Now, I’m not totally defending them, I’ve seen some kids make really dumb mistakes in there. I’ve seen one try to put the monkey’s head on the bottom, and countless kids can’t seem to figure out which side of the monkey is supposed to face forward.
But idiots aside, that is still one pain in the ass challenge. The pieces of the monkey are high up on shelves, so shorter contestants have to devote a solid minute to retrieving them. Then, once you have the pieces, even if you assemble them in record time, there’s no guarantee the door will even open on the first time. Many a precious second has been lost due to kids having to repeatedly slam down on the head of the Silver Monkey. It’s just an unbalanced challenge that all too often costs kids the game. Olmec, it seems, could care less. He’s stone cold.
From The Shrine of the Silver Monkey, contestants can go into The King’s Store Room, where they must…smash clay pots to find a key. What? Again? They had to do that two rooms ago! The Shrine of the Silver Monkey is bookended by two rooms where all you do is smash pots? Who designed this place?
From there it’s up to the Observatory, then back into the Pit of Despair, then into the Crypt and back out of the Temple for the win! Hopefully. Olmec reminds the players that “The choices are your’s, and your’s alone.” No, actually the route they need to take is predetermined, and any attempt to take another route will result in them finding locked doors and losing time. Well, except for that one time a locked door opened when it wasn’t supposed to and allowed the kid to get the artifact out in record time. Oh I’m not kidding, it actually happened, listen to how shocked Kirk Fogg is as he tries to cover his ass: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvckTE1rKE0 Also worth listening to is the kid’s attempt to explain his strategy and Kirk’s absolute inability to understand him.
Now, before they begin their journey into the temple, they have to learn about what prizes they can win. Oh, this should be good. First, just for getting to the Temple Round, they win a portable CD player!
Hey, for the time, that’s not that bad of a prize, what do they get for getting to the Horseshoe?
Okay…usually prizes are supposed to get better as you go on. What do they win if they get the Horseshoe out of the temple?
OMG OMG OMG! SPACE CAMP!!! In…Alabama? Um..okay. Whatever, whatever, it’s fucking Space Camp, what kid didn’t want to go there? I’m pulling for you Orange Iguanas, I will live my Space Camp Dreams vicariously through you! Unfortunately you only have one life pendant, so you’re probably boned.
Well, lets see how long this lasts. Olmec, lower your gate.
The girl takes off, and after the Pit of Despair, decides to go into the Heart Room. Here Kirk says “Which way is she going to choose…which way is it going to let her choose?” So much for the choices being her’s and her’s alone. Anyways, she eventually ends up in the Dark Forest, where Kirk mentions that the spirit of a Temple Guard may reside. Shockingly, a tree comes to life and grabs the girl, who’s name is Paula, if you care.
I’m wondering why it seemed to yell “Oh Yeaaaah” when it grabbed her. This is a mildly disturbing show. She gives up her life pendant, and breaks through the wall into the mine shaft. Well…not so much “breaks through” as “casually strolls through” but hey, it’s an old temple, the walls are loose.
She makes her way up to the Viper Room, meaning she’s only one room away from the certain doom that is The Shrine of the Silver Monkey…but wait, what’s that?
What a stroke of luck, the Horseshoe is in the Viper Room, meaning all the temple doors open and she doesn’t have a spend five minutes assembling a statue of a monkey! This is great for her, but horrible for me, as I was planning on devoting a large chunk of this review to the struggle she surely would have had. So…to kill time, here’s a picture of a platypus.
Paula has no trouble getting out of the temple, and she and her partner win all the prizes, they’re going to Space Camp bitches!
Kirk tries to steal their moment by declaring that he knew they could do it because he’s been calling them The Comeback Kids the whole time. Let that be a lesson to you, no one upstages Kirk Fogg.
Well, there you have it, Legends of the Hidden Temple. I’m really shocked that a random episode I selected happened to end in the team actually getting the artifact out of the temple, as the failure rate is absurdly high. Alas, this episode lacked any Silver Monkey shenanigans and had no truly terrifying run ins with Temple Guards. I blame myself. To make up for it, here’s a temple run where a kid gets so scared by a Temple Guard that he jumps out of the Temple entirely.
And if you’re wondering what ever happened to Olmec and Kirk…
http://www.collegehumor.com/video:1763746 (Warning: Not Safe For Work)