Saturday, February 7, 2015

King of the Nerds 1/23/15--"Judgment Day" summary

I have been watching this show since it started, in the hopes it would fill the void left by “Beauty and the Geek”. It sort of does, but without condescending hot people so that’s good right? I like that they cast a wide variety of nerds, from comic book geeks to NASA scientists. And the challenges are cool. (I’m a little behind, so recaps will come more often at first until I can catch up, and then it’ll be once a week as usual.) (click for more)

Previously on “King of the Nerds”: Kayla was crowned King of the Nerds. Then she went to Mars and was consumed by space madness. Just go with it. She bombed Nerdvana so the Elder Nerds moved the Throne of Games underground to save it. Then Kayla died and now there is no King. Hee. I like how they always kill off the previous winner. Also how I believe there have been two female winners and they were still King.

Jonathan says he is a “statistical consultant”. He starts giving an example about potato chips but then reveals his tattoo of…Pascal’s Triangle? Maybe? I have no idea. Raychelle is listed as a “gamer” but she says she cosplays also. Ben is a marine biologist. He…seems cooler than usual? I mean the usual level of cool for this show? Sure. Everyone is here now and they are getting their introduction to how they’re going to compete for $100,000. Our hosts are Robert Carradine and Curtis Armstrong and they are pretty good at this hosting thing. The right blend of caring and not caring about the contestants.

As the spiel is happening we cut to some alcove or something with trash in it, and then Bobby and Curtis are there again. They arrived with the Terminator effect so of course Curtis is naked. They throw trash and then “meet” and Curtis says they can’t pick teams because it will all go horribly wrong. Hee. Bobby says “watch out for the pickle”.

JK you won’t pick your own teams! The twist is there’s no twist! Green team is Colby, Amanda, Jacob, Heather, Jonathan, and Ori. Ori says he’s a LARPer and also a mechanical engineer. He seems weird. Blue team is Lily, Ben, Raychelle, Todd, Thomas, and Kaitlin. Kaitlin is a NASA engineer. Spoiler: I like Kaitlin.

The Nerd War is to make a Rube Goldberg machine to raise your team flag and reveal your team name that you will make up today. It must also be steampunk. People explain what “steampunk” and “Rube Goldberg” are in case you don’t know. I will assume you know. They’ll be judged on functionality, engineering, and creativity. 24 hours. I’m so confused at first because I am used to shows where you get 2 or 3 hours to do things. As the nerds run into Nerdvana Bobby ducks so Curtis gets hit with a pickle.

The inside of Nerdvana is as always, covered in stuff and computers and a slushie machine and lots of crap. Heather (neuroscientist) is excited for Pac-Man even though she is bad at Pac-Man. She’s wearing a hair barrette that is supposed to be a pixelated bow, which is borderline trying too hard. It’s cute though. Thomas…is a brony. “Brony” is a category of nerd? Sigh. He’s also an Eagle Scout so that’s a nerd thing. There’s also a secret room, which isn’t that exciting. Jacob says he works in a comic book store and he’s also a quizmaster. That seems pretty impressive. Colby is a Jeopardy! champion and he’s not even going to bother to pretend that’s not who he is. Too hard to deny it. Todd calls himself “Todd the Bod” and says he has the personality to make a comic book person win. Sure. Lily is a cosplayer because there always is at least one. Ben leers about how she’s hot. Amanda is being labeled “bookworm” so that’s a thing? What kind of books though? Is that useful?

The whole cast is hanging out on a big circular couch/lounging area while they all introduce themselves and meet each other. Kaitlin is not having it. She wants to get to work. I kind of like how serious she is. She interrupts everyone to ask if they can start, and I think everyone agrees and they all run off.

There’s a list for each team of all the stuff they have. Ori is telling everyone to tell him what to make and he’ll make it. Jacob asks how they’re being graded, and they can’t remember the “engineering” part, but he’s like “Let’s just make something cool”. Kaitlin takes over and gets bossy. Raychelle says Kaitlin is really bossy, but she’s laughing so I think she’s not that offended. By midnight, Jonathan is on top of everything, but Ori is completely useless. He’s dropping stuff and being a dork. Heather suggests having something double back, and no one says anything. A guy says basically the same thing, and Ori is like “oh that’ll work”. When Heather protests that she already said that, Ori is like “Sorry, I’m not sure why I didn’t hear you. Probably because you’re a woman.” Ha ha, asshole. He claims it was a joke, but now everyone else wants to get rid of him if they lose. Blue team has pieces that work but things don’t link together.

In the morning Jonathan is confident in everything but they don’t know what the Blue team is doing. With one hour to go, the Blue team has burned out the motor in their fan. They have to replace it with a mousetrap somehow, but they can’t test it really. No time.

At the Nerd War Jonathan notices the Blue team has a lot more stuff going on. Green team might be in trouble. The first guest judge is Adam Sadowsky, who created that video for OK Go. Love that video for “This Too Shall Pass”. Second judge is Danica McKellar. Heather looks up to her because she also aspires to be cute and intelligent. Michael McMillan from “True Blood” is the last judge. Raychelle freaks out. If any interactions fail, the team has one minute to fix it. They can do this three times.

Green team goes first. They have some story about a mechanized mineral, and steam or something. There’s a train that pushes a block off the table and it…doesn’t. When they reset it seems to work. There’s an iron melting a cord and it takes forever but eventually works. Their banner drops and their team name is S.M.A.S.H. Supersonic Masters And Slayers of Hordes. Sigh. OK, fine, Team SMASH.

Blue team makes Todd pretend to be a supervillain called The Clockwork King and Lily is a reporter. There’s a steam bomb and some army men and stuff. They do a lot more acting than the other team. The mousetrap fails so good job. Heather is glad only because it means both teams had a failure. The Blue team decides they will start at the beginning because it’s cooler, instead of just throwing things at the mousetrap. It works this time, and the banner rises up from the ground which is more impressive. Their name is House Hooloovoo. The Hooloovoo are a race from “Hitchhiker’s Guide” that are a hyper-intelligent shade of blue. OK that name is much better, for all that “Hooloovoo” is annoying to type.

Blue team was more whimsical, but Green team had some creative elements. Michael votes for House Hooloovoo because it was more interesting. Danica talks about how being a nerd means having passion and getting into stuff, and then votes for Team SMASH which makes no sense. But it does give us a tie, of course. Adam says Team SMASH was very masculine and he was more impressed with the lifting of the banner so Team Hooloovoo wins the Nerd War. Kaitlin smugs that she doesn’t know why her team is so surprised because she always wins. It’s not as annoying as it sounds. They all win a ComicCon survival kit from ThinkGeek. Sweet! Team SMASH will send two people to the Nerd-Off. They vote for one, and Team Hooloovoo gets to pick the other one. I always liked this concept, especially since someone could be voted in by their team and then survive, forcing everyone to deal with them. And the other team gets to try to get rid of strong players. As they all leave Raychelle makes it awkward by shouting that she loves Michael.

Team SMASH sits in the dorms to talk about who they’re voting for. I don’t know why they don’t all make whatever decision on their own like Survivor. It’s not like the alliance is meeting to discuss what’s up and you have to keep it a secret. Maybe because even if everyone votes for you, you could still win the Nerd-Off so it’s not exactly like Survivor? Ori interviews that his team won’t vote for him, because he’s a nice guy and no one gets mad at him unless he’s being incompetent. You mean like during the challenge? “Or I tell really bad jokes.” Yeah…you’re dumb. Heather gets bossy in confessional about how Ori is useless. I think she’s about to tell him so, but Jonathan interrupts to say that if they’re all sitting around facing each other no one will say anything bad about anyone. It’s true. So they take a break…? Jacob is not nervous because the other team will pick Colby because he’s a Jeopardy champion.

They all go to see the prize, which is a carry-on suitcase that looks like a Game Boy, that’s full of T-shirts and a water bottle and shit like that. Todd is like “fantastic T-shirts that are definitely not my size” which is kind of rude but also Todd is a big guy and I’ve been known to make that comment myself. Kaitlin thinks they should wait until tomorrow to talk about who to vote for. Raychelle agrees because she is ready to get drunk. Everyone hangs out and drinks, I guess. Ben is plotting to get rid of someone useful, like a cosplay person. At some point he knows there’ll be a cosplay challenge and if one team doesn’t have any cosplayers it’ll be hard. Good idea. But he’s telling this idea to Ori, who is on the other team, so maybe not the best plan. Everyone goes to bed on the bunk beds.

After breakfast, Amanda says her plan is to get a girls’ alliance together, her, Heather, Lily, and Raychelle. Oo, a cross-team alliance. There aren’t as many girls here as boys, but I’m not sure why Kaitlin isn’t in on this. Raychelle says the boys on Team Hooloovoo want to send either Heather or Amanda to the Nerd-Off, and Amanda points out that if the boys are already gunning for the only two girls on the other team, they’ll just turn on Lily and Raychelle next. Yeah that’s probably true. Amanda wants them to convince their team to vote for Colby, and then they’ll vote in Ori, and then a boy will go home. Team Hooloovoo meets and Lily says that Ori is so terrible they should leave him in there to screw their team. The boys want to get rid of Heather because of cosplay, but Colby is a savant, is Raychelle’s argument. Ben says they should do something unexpected.

All the nerds meet in one room and Jacob says they should all just hang out before someone goes home. It’s hard because everyone is cool and no one hates each other yet. I bet hanging out in a cool house with other people like you would be super fun.

So in the basement there’s a huge door that has rotating red lights and ventilation fans and whatever. When they reveal the Throne of Games, they put a wind machine which is hilarious. Lily is like “There sure are a lot of books. Go literacy!” Your sarcasm isn’t funny, Lily. Team SMASH all votes for Ori, except for I assume Ori voted for Colby. Lily has her hands to her mouth like she’s worried for some reason. Why? Because they wanted him to stay? Whatever. Ori says he’s confused because he has no sense that no one likes him because he’s not bright, I guess. Jacob still thinks he is safe, as he lists how everyone else is a bigger target than he is. But then everyone on Team Hooloovoo voted for him. His entire team stands back and looks at him in shock. Where in the fuck did that come from? Lily is all about to cry like she’s actually sorry which is kind of annoying, especially when Team SMASH asks what is going on and when Ben starts to explain she turns around and orders him to not say anything. Don’t pretend like you care about what you did, Lily. I’m onto you. Ben eventually says that they decided as a team what would benefit them.

The Nerd-Off will be to answer questions about anime and manga and then I think they will get to destroy things. Kaitlin doesn’t understand why her team is sad, because it’s not like they’re really going to die, and the fact that both Ori and Jacob were shocked means they made the right choice. See, thank you, Kaitlin. Exactly. To win you must vote people out, and you had several options of who to vote out, so don’t act like it breaks your heart. You could have voted for Colby. Sadly Ori is an otaku, and I have to be honest that when I hear “otaku” I think “creepy white guy” so good for you. Jacob leaves to study by himself and Ori goes “I got this!” while slapping his chest with the side of his hand like to do to make fun of mentally handicapped people. He does it and then immediately goes “no, I can’t do that” but it’s too late, asshole. I can’t tell if he’s just so lacking in social skills that he doesn’t get that these things are not appropriate, or if he’s an offensive asshole. Maybe he has no social skills, since he didn’t get that his team was annoyed with him. Jacob is feeling really worried, because Ori clearly knows more than him. Colby shifts to helping teach Jacob how to retain information. Ori tries to get on Facebook because he is immature.

Outside they’ve set up a miniature fake city with buildings and army men and whatever. Ori and Jacob are dressed like Godzilla. Jacob is really serious and Ori is jacking around because that is how they are. I am rooting for Jacob because Ori is so annoying. Plus Jacob is cute. The first question is about Power Rangers which is hilarious and I even knew the answer. So when you win, then you get to smash shit. That part looks like all kinds of fun. Then a Dragon Ball Z question which who knows? Every time they read a question Ori grins and jumps up and down which is getting old. Heather says she hopes Jacob keeps winning because she doesn’t want to hang out with Ori anymore. But Jacob loses the next question (Godzilla has a Hollywood Walk of Fame star) and then Lily gloats that this is the turning point they needed. Whatever. I’m sad now. Apparently the idea is that Jacob would keep the team functioning and Ori is so useless the team will fail if they have to deal with him. So Team Hooloovoo voted for Jacob because his loss will screw the team the most. I guess that makes sense, but Ori is so terrible I would get rid of him anyway. It’s like having to decide between a useless person who doesn’t aid you, or someone who will beat you down the line. Jacob might have done really well in the end but do you really want to listen to Ori’s offensive statements anymore? The last question is about Naruto, and Ori shakes his head about how Curtis’s pronunciation of the answer options is terrible. Shut up Ori. Sadly they are both right so Ori wins. Boo. He does some fake thing and the power plant blows up. Raychelle says she knows it’s her fault Jacob is going home, because they wanted to keep Ori because he sucks, and that makes her a terrible person but it also makes her good at the game. Yeah, that’s true. See I respect that much more than Lily’s hands to her mouth and crying at the vote, which she turned off instantly to boss Ben around.

Jacob leaves which is really sad. Bye Jacob. You were cute and sadly a victim of good planning and strategy. He walks off and says going home first sucks like you weren’t even there. Boo.

Next time: it’s cosplay time!

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