Friday, 1 August 2014

Just finished again: The Genius

So, you may (or may not) be wondering why I haven’t been posting much recently. Well, for one thing, I got a job. And on top of that I hurt my leg quite badly, which meant that sitting at my computer and typing for any length of time was quite painful.

And, as is usual when I’m ill or in pain, I tend to turn to Korean game shows to help me pass the time. I don’t know why. I just do. And in the past week, I’ve binged on both series of The Genius in a mad rush of game theory love.

I’ve written about this series before, and since I generally know who won which games, it wasn’t as intense watching it a second time. But once I started, I found it impossible to stop watching until the final episode. I’d forgotten about some of the strategies used to win various games, and how clever some of them were. I’d forgotten about how unlucky some of the first competitors to be eliminated were. And also how over-confident some of them were, too.

I also took a little time to appreciate the editing, music and set design. The recurring image of the garnet (the in-game currency) in various place was very clever. In fact, the care with which this is all put together makes other game shows look a bit shoddy in comparison. While most game shows (especially in the UK) are content with repeating the same games ad infinitum with a series of pleasant but anonymous faces playing the games. The Genius builds up relationships and rivalries, as alliances are made and empires rise and fall over several episodes. It’s pretty epic stuff, when you think about it.

And as I write this, season three should start filming soon. From what I’ve on the internet, the casting for the new series was open, meaning non-celebrities could enter. This is fine by me. After all, it’s not as if I knew who Hong Jin Ho or Cha Yu Ram were before I watched this.

Whatever happens next, I’ll be looking forward to it!

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