TMZ, which first reported Wipeout’s new death, said law enforcement “got a cardiac arrest call just before noon Wednesday, and medics on set had already started using a defibrillator on the contestant, who was experiencing chest pains after completing the course.” The AP reported that a “man in his 30s was declared dead at a hospital shortly before 7 p.m. Wednesday, Los Angeles County coroner’s spokeswoman Sarah Adamant said.
The set of ABC’s Wipe out under construction in 2014 at Macmillan Ranch in Humphreys, Calif. (Photo by William Garrett)When TBS announced it was reviving Wipe out, it said it “will feature new format twists and elements that will push contestants’ athleticism and willpower to even greater extremes.” It also said the course has been redesigned to be harder: “Accountability, owning one's truth, and inspiration (among others) are current popular buzz words.
Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means. Wipe out is being resurrected on TBS, complete with the giant red balls off of which people’s bodies bounce, but it will be “a reimagined take” that will include elements of strategy, in addition to just being violently but safely flung around a cushioned obstacle course.
Holey Money returns next month, as it filmed in late winter; it’s unclear when Wipe out will make its way back to TV. The show aired 130 episodes over seven television seasons, many of which were broken up by themed versions of the show, starting with seasons, and also including things like holidays (“Winter Wipe out : Deck the Balls”), sports (“ Wipe out Bowl”), and even dating (“Blind Date”) and first responders (“America’s Finest Edition”).
Endemic Shine North America’s Sharon Levy said in the release, “This show has truly become a global phenomenon and its popularity has continued to grow over the last decade with a new generation of viewers. Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means.
It features contestants competing in (what was billed as) the “World's Largest” obstacle course which originally aired on ABC from June 24, 2008, to September 7, 2014. In 2020, it was announced that the show was being rebooted on TBS, with John Cent, Nicole Bye, and Camille Hosted as hosts.
Producers called in Michael Glazer to find a “comic host replacement” that eventually went to John Henson. The first season's success spawned a series of international versions of Wipe out, debuting in countries including the United Kingdom and Argentina in January 2009.
On December 8, 2008, ABC announced plans to counter-program NBC's Super Bowl game-day telecasts with a sports-star-studded episode of Wipe out, entitled Wipe out Bowl”. The episode featured female cheerleaders competing against male “couch potato” sports fans.
During the hour-long special, Monica Kauffman became the show's first female competitor to win. According to TV Week, in 2009 Wipe out became the third most popular game show in the world, based on ratings.
On July 22, 2009, Wipe out was renewed for a third season, for which filming began in September 2009. The third-season finale aired on September 14, 2010, with a special “America's Finest Edition”, featuring some of America's heroes, including firefighters and policemen.
New episodes of Winter Wipe out began on December 8, 2011, with a Christmas special episode, entitled Winter Wipe out : Deck the Balls. That same year, syndicated reruns of Wipe out aired on truth and TBS.
In addition, it was announced that former co-host Jill Wagner would be returning to the series after a season-long absence. Vanessa Lacey departed the series due to her impending pregnancy.
On August 30, 2012, Activision released a Wipe out game for iOS. For its seventh season winners from each episode were brought together for a “Tournament of Champions” at the end of the season to compete for the title of Ultimate Wipe out Champion.
Reportedly revamped for an eighth season as Wipe out Extreme, by the summer of 2015, ABC had quietly canceled the show and removed it from the network website. The Wipe out set at Sable Ranch, as seen in 2014Contestants compete through four rounds of competition until a final winner is chosen.
The show never made clear to viewers whether or how the finishing times are adjusted for failing to complete obstacles along the way. They typically involve large structures that competitors have to enter, navigate around while hostile devices try to knock them off, and then jump to a landing pad to finish, where Jill Wagner awaits them.
This leaves only the top four (top three in some seasons) to make it to the final round called the Wipe out Zone, where the winner earns the title of Wipe out Champion and a $50,000 grand prize. The challenges change each week, but always feature offbeat and comical obstacles, such as the “Sucker Punch”, “Big Balls” (the show's trademark obstacle, four very large red spheres in sequence that must be traversed from a running start, with failures often resulting in odd-angle rejections), the “Sweeper”, the “Dizzy Dummy” or the “Treadmill”.
Emphasis is always placed on obstacles that can produce sudden jarring collisions (the obstacle surfaces are heavily padded and competitors sometimes don helmets or flak jackets) followed by spectacular falls into the water below, these being the show's titular “wipe outs”. As part of wiping out, the competitors often end up covered in mud, froth, vats of food, or other unlikely substances.
In one of the show's trademarks, the commentators have a humorous running commentary, often mocking and insulting the contestants as they compete. The exchanges between the two hosts is often a subplot of episodes themselves, with Anderson playing it mostly straight as a play-by-play man while Henson offers up off-the-wall inanities and non sequitur as color commentary.
Jill Wagner offers additional features reactions, and also provides interviews with the contestants filmed before their turn begins. These interviews tend to emphasize bizarre aspects of contestants' personalities, with Wagner making facial commentary as the conversation proceeds.
Generally only those who will pass the first round are introduced, and a nickname is assigned that is used throughout the game. The final four or three contestants play separately on a large obstacle course inside the studio called the Wipe out Zone, each attempting to finish the course in the fastest time, much like the first round.
Though slight variations are used in each episode, contestants wear wetsuits, and they begin by either sliding down a water ramp or being launched by a giant catapult or blob into the course, swimming to the first obstacle. The player with the fastest time on the course is declared the “champion” of the episode and is awarded the show's grand prize of $50,000.
The Wipe out Zone often brings competitors to the brink of exhaustion, especially when they have to swim back to a starting point to retry a failed obstacle. The storage area of the Wipe out set at Sable Ranch, as seen in 2013On its premiere night, Wipe out scored the highest premiere rating of any new show in summer 2008, besting competing veteran summer shows Hell's Kitchen and America's Got Talent.
As the season progressed, Nielsen Media Research put it at the top of the 18-49 demographic, slightly outpaced by America's Got Talent. The second season premiered on May 27, 2009, and with an audience of 9.69 million, Wipe out bested its first season average and gave ABC its best numbers in the Wednesday 8:00 p.m. slot since November 2007.
The third season premiered on June 22, 2010, with ratings of 10.21 million, with a special “Blind Date” episode getting 12.8 million viewers on June 1, 2010. In 2016, a New York Times study of the 50 TV shows with the most Facebook Likes found that Wipe out was “most popular in Northern, rural areas with a large percentage of white people: Idaho, Utah, Wisconsin and Maine are all on the top of this show's list”.
On January 6, 2011, the first season of Winter Wipe out premiered with the series' highest ratings ever, beating the 8pm competition in the coveted 18-49 demographic and many other key demos. Year Awards Category Result Notes 2009 Rose d'Or Entertainment Category Nominated 2010 Entertainment Weekly Guilty Pleasure Reality Showdown Won Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Reality Show Nominated 2011 Favorite Reality Show Nominated Teen Choice Awards Choice TV: Reality Competition Show Nominated 2012 Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Reality Show Won 2013 Favorite Reality Show Won 2014 Favorite Reality Show Won Teen Choice Awards Choice Summer TV Show Won 2015 Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Reality Show Nominated Notes ^ Wipe out won the award for the first time, dethroning American Idol, which had won the category every time since its inception.
The concept and style of the show has been compared to several Japanese game shows, most notably Unbeatable Bank, SAKE and Takes hi's Castle. This was brought to the attention of the Japanese broadcaster Tokyo Broadcasting System, who filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against ABC, charging that Wipe out is “a blatant copycat” of several of its classic Japanese competition game shows.
Among the charges are that ABC bought search terms such as MAC (the Americanized comedy version of Takes hi's Castle) on Google to help drive traffic to the official Wipe out page, and that specific obstacles in Wipe out were knock-offs of challenges in those Japanese game shows. Wipe out creator and executive producer Matt Units, who also executive produced Endemic's Fear Factor (NBC), said Wipe out is “90% Fear Factor-inspired, 10% Japanese game show”, adding in a Los Angeles Times interview that Wipe out was born from a desire to do a funny stunt series.
He reportedly wanted to sell the show as Fear Factor meets America's Funniest Home Videos. The suit was settled in December 2011 through mediation with a federal judge without going to trial.
The “Small” characters have great Speed but little Strength. The “Medium” characters have a more balanced amount of Speed and Strength, with neither one serving as the dominant trait.
The fourth category is “Special,” which has a high amount of Speed and Strength. The Wii game is different from the show (and its Nintendo DS counterpart) in that there are only 4 contestants, and none are eliminated during the first three rounds.
The game has commentary by Henson, Anderson and Wagner, all three of whom are featured as unlockable playable characters. It took full advantage of the Kine ct remote and has rag doll wipe outs and different rounds from the Wii and DS version, such as Bruise ball.
The game was released “in conjunction with the premier of Wipeout's summer season on ABC” on June 16, 2011. Activision announced on August 18, 2011, that a direct sequel to the first Wipe out game was in development titled Wipe out 2 for Xbox 360 with Kine ct, PlayStation 3, Wii, Nintendo DS and Nintendo 3DS.
The new game is described as “Offering updated, outrageous course designs across all platforms with obstacles and effects taken straight from the show's summer and winter seasons. Players must navigate around snow, ice, foam, and fan-favorite obstacles like the Sucker Punch Wall and Big Balls; which are making their triumphant returns alongside more than 50 others”.
Activision announced on June 25, 2013, that a new title called Wipe out : Create & Crash would be released on Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360, and Nintendo 3DS on October 15, 2013. Endemic Shine North America has sold the Wipe out format to more than 40 territories and has created two obstacle courses in Argentina for those international editions.
The original United States series also airs in the UK on Challenge (as Total Wipe out USA), in New Zealand on Comedy Central, in Australia on Nine Network ; in the Philippines and India on AXN and also on Comedy Central in India, in the Netherlands on RTL 5, and in Hong Kong on TV Pearl. It is also broadcast in Ireland by TG4 with an Irish language voice over.
The Scandinavian countries Denmark, Norway, and Sweden produce separate versions of the show based on the same footage of contestants from the three countries competing against each other. The American, British, Canadian and Australian versions are broadcast in Portugal on FX and also the Spanish and Argentinian versions and a rerun of the first season in Portuguese on +TV.
The Italian version is made from the USA show, with the original audio still audible; some episodes are taken from the UK version, Total Wipe out. Wipe out Revival Lands at TBS, Which Promises New Twists and the Return of Big, Red Balls”.
Wipe out : John Cent & Nicole Bye To Host TBS' Revival Series”. ^ Google Map ^ Wipe out special set for Super Sunday”.
^ “As Brains Battle Brawn, Wipe out Celebrates Its 100th Episode and the Return of Jill Wagner”. ^ “TBS Picks Up the Iconic Extreme Obstacle Course Series Wipe out (Press release).
^ “John Cent and Nicole Bye Set to Host TBS' Revival of the Renowned Extreme Obstacle Course Series Wipe out (Press release). ^ 18006331.html?category id=1417&cs=1 ABC renews Wipe out for third season to begin in the Summer of 2010 ^ Seattlepi.com “TV Guide” section ^ Hubbard, James.
^ Editor's Choice Awards': And the winners are...” Retrieved August 17, 2014. ^ “2013 Kids' Choice Awards: And the winners are...” Retrieved August 17, 2014.
“Teen Choice Award: The Complete Winners List”. “Meryl Streep gets her first Kids' Choice Awards nomination: See the full list”.
“ABC, Endemic Settle Wipe out Copyright Lawsuit With Japanese Broadcaster”. ^ “Activision and ABC Entertainment Group Announce Exclusive Wipe out In The Zone, Coming This Summer on Kine ct for Xbox 360”.
^ Profile Archived 2011-04-30 at the Payback Machine, tvovermind.zap2it.com; accessed August 17, 2014. ^ Wipe out page on Belgian TV network ATM (in Dutch) ^ Domingo do Faust (in Portuguese) ^ Wipe out Canada website Archived June 6, 2010, at the Payback Machine ^ “Article about the French show”.
CS1 main: multiple names: authors list (link) ^ Clarke, Steve (August 20, 2008). Wikimedia Commons has media related to Wipe out (U.S. sports TV).