Netflix caught me off guard with the new game show BS


The Business Standard

The cover for the new game show in Netflix

Opening Netflix, I was extremely caught off guard when the word “bullsh*t” was in bold with purple around it on my television screen. 

Curiosity bested me, and I found myself clicking on the bolded swear word. Comedian Howie Mandel, whom I know from America’s Got Talent, appeared on my screen, and I was soon informed that he would be running the new game show. 

To win the one million dollar prize, contestants have to get away with lies as they answer trivia questions they don’t know the answer to. The other contestants are trying to guess whether or not the person on the stand is lying, and the more times they are correct in their assumptions, the closer they are to getting to going on the stand. The game show is a lot like the card game “BS,” and a punch of nostalgia hit me as I was thrown into a memory of screaming at my brother as he set down six cards all somehow labeled four. Though I appreciate the nostalgic feel, the game was not perfect.

It seems too easy to win.

The best part of game shows is seeing people struggle to win and cling to the money they have made. The contestants in this game were nearly guaranteed to go home with at least one thousand dollars in their pocket, which is quite nice for them, but boring for me as a viewer. I want to see the other contestants battle it out to win the grand prize, but every contestant had an even shot at winning if they were good at lying, and the few verbal fights that occurred were dull and short-lived. 

It seems too easy to win.

I also would have appreciated more from Mandel; he was a side character on the show he is supposed to run. I wanted more jokes and screen time for the beloved comedian. The people competing were entertaining though and made up for the lack of Mandel—watching them twitch and discerning their different tell-tale signs of lying was one of the better aspects of the show. 

It was also quite entertaining to see which contestant was the most gullible. One girl believed the liar twice before she learned her lesson. I found guessing when someone was lying was far easier than guessing when someone was telling the truth. The signs were obvious when someone was lying and nerves blurred when someone was telling the truth, but the guessing kept me entertained. 

Another good aspect would be the staging: it was dark but had bright colors around the contestants. It focused more on the action of lying, yet didn’t distract from the liar. The screens were readable without distracting from the contestant on the stand. 

I have mixed feelings about the show, but in all, I would continue to watch. In most game shows, the intent is to guess the correct answer, so spicing it up with winning by fibbing made the entire game more entertaining than a traditional game show. There is no lie in my words as I claim this new game show deserves a watch, and Netflix didn’t fall below my expectations.