I love karaoke. Really, check my profile.
So how excited was I that not one, but two karaoke game shows were on tonight!?! Not very, but I watched them anyway. First, an encore presentation of The Singing Bee on NBC and an hour later, Don't Forget the Lyrics on Fox. Here's my assessment of the two shows.
The Spelling Bee is hosted by Joey Fatone. The show starts with Joey strolling through the audience and hand-picking six contestants. The six are whittled down to four, then two and finally one. That one is crowned the winner and gets a trophy and a chance to win $50,000.
The band and a rotating group of singers do most of the work. The contestants aren't really heard until the music stops and they must finish the song clip. The singers tonight were good. I'd guess a spare few make a living singing commercial jingles. Actually, the contestants weren't all that bad either.
Don't Forget the Lyrics is hosted by Wayne Brady. The show features one contestant for the entire hour (or two hours, the show ended in a cliffhanger!) picking songs from categories on a board and singing them karaoke-style in front of a giant video screen displaying the lyrics. The contestant sings with a live band for what seems like forever until the screen stops showing the words and has blanks that the contestant must fill-in. After they sing their guess, they can change their minds. They can also use one of their three lifelines, I mean "back-up singers" to help 'em out if they get stuck. The grand prize is one million dollars.
I like the format of Don't Forget the Lyrics better. The Spelling Bee was a little too slapdash. The pace was too quick and their was no second-guessing tension.
The singing was the worst part of Don't Forget the Lyrics. The fact that a terrible singer was showcased for an entire episode made it painful to watch/listen. I like The Singing Bee's use of professional singers as song starters.
What surprised me was the overlap of songs. Is "Walk Like an Egyptian" a hot karaoke selection?
Neither show was interesting enough to watch again. I probably would have been better off singing along with my Karaoke Revolution game.