Saturday, September 17, 2011

Wipeout: Double Whammy with a Double-Long!

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

After missing in action for a couple of weeks, Wipeout aired two episodes last week - one on Tuesday and one on Thursday. The second episode was a double-whammy, which caught me by surprise. At the end of the episode, the hosts made a comment about having had a great summer season, so it sounds like it's off the air for a while. As I mentioned before, I do not anticipate following this show any longer, so I apologize to any readers who honestly enjoyed my breakdowns and commentaries for Wipeout.

Wipeout "Does This Avatar Make Me Look Fat?" (S04E30): Yet another episode designed to push the video game. Anyone surprised?
Qualifier: Starts with the Video Game Spinner (jump onto a spinning circular platform. Avoid danglers hanging down as you rotate around, and try to jump off the other side onto a platform that randomly raises and lowers. But the tricky part is getting onto the thing in the first place - there are tall blocks around the circumference, featuring avatars of the hosts), Driver's Ed (get across a wall of spinning steering wheels, popping-out air bags, and swinging pedals), Big Balls (which descend in height this time), the Jiggilator (jump onto a vibrating platform, then onto another, through a hole, and get past a punching glove to a steady platform), and Double Barrel (there's a large oval that revolves vertically with two circles carved inside - just jump into one circle and ride around, jumping out on the other side. Oh, and it's a Surfing Safari theme this time). The best time in the Qualifier today wins a $25,000 bonus! Nobody really did well on the Video Game Spinner. [Toothless was creepy. The Patriot was interesting. Watching the punching glove slam down on the various contestants was amusing. The repeated replays of the airbags from Driver's Ed got obnoxious.] TheExhibitionist won the $25,000.
Round 2: Total Carnage (everyone starts out on one platform and they need to jump from one to the next, ten feet above the water. The whole time, they need to deal with two arms that keep coming around - one side has three spinning rings hanging down while the other side has a crankshaft going). As per the usual on this obstacle, many people are wiped out almost immediately when the arms come around. TruckTricker finishes first. 
Round 3: Wipeout Playset (each person has their own slide to go down, land on a spinning platform, ride some sweepers across to other areas, then use a diving board [while goo is spraying at you] to go through a windmill and land on a small slide/ramp. When one person gets through, everyone has to start at the beginning again). MrTaylorSwift finishes first, then TheExhibitionist, then TruckTricker. [hilarious misses on the slides-to-spinner!]
WipeoutZone: Flume of Doom (7-story plummet into the water), Iron Maze-In (there's a giant, vertically-spinning maze... enter on one side, climb through, and jump out on the other side), Axel of Evil (there's an arm that goes around. grab onto the three spinning prongs on one end and ride them around to another platform), and Great Wall of Fall (cross a wall by climbing across cylinders that pop out and retract. plus there are water cannons shooting at you). TheExhibitionist is first... he messes up his jump out of Iron Maze-In on his first try. He gets by the Axel on his first try, but does fall on his first cross of the Wall. He finishes at 7:24. [pretty good!] TruckTricker is next. He struggles to get out of the Iron Maze-In on the first try, and messes up his first attempt at Axel as well. He runs out of time when he falls from the Wall. MrTaylorSwift falls out of the Iron Maze-In on his first try and almost doesn't make it on the second try. He screws up the dismount off the Axel the first time, too. He finishes with 7:18, winning by six seconds. [the commentary while TheExhibitionist went was kinda forced... "the Wall of Fall can make a good run go bad," "it's easy to lose your sense of direction, as we have seen all too often," etc.]

Wipeout "Blind Date 2.0: This Could Get Ugly" (S04E31): Another blind-date edition... meaning that the game is done by couples... who just met. I thought this one was really corny, between the pairings and the commentary... geesh. Also, not a big fan of John Henson's outfit this time.
Photo: Wipeout on Facebook
Qualifier: Starts with Love Train (run across train tracks, but they're not all stable so some fall down toward the mud, like seen to the right), then Dreadmill with Big Balls (treadmill propelling you toward the four big balls), Lovers Leap (jump onto a ball, then onto a swinging platform, then off again), and Italian Kitchen (cross a platform, going through a hole and down into a puddle of sauce, then through another hole and get punched by a bouncing bowl of noodles [?], then through another hole, then over two giant cannolis that move). Overall, lots of messiness this time.
Round 2: Scareousel... Start on a red platform, grab onto a red dangler as it comes around, riding it over three hurdles to a designated red finish spot. Then, go up a couple of stairs to a yellow pedestal and wait for a yellow dangler to come around. Ride that past some sweepers to the finish platform. The first four teams to have both members make it across will move on.) [I feel like it took extra long for players to make it across this time. just me?]
Round 3: Wipeout Disco. This is an obstacle course that starts out with a flipping platform that you have to get over, then a platform that bounces, a crankshaft (the easy kind where the pieces parallel to the waterline are even with one another... but the platform you walk across does sway), a knee-sweeper, and a spinning platform to jump onto and off of. [Honestly, this is one of my favorite rounds!] The Disco part refers to fake records and disco balls being thrown at the contestants by people dressed as folks from the 70s. The first pair to get both people across move on. Then, everyone starts over and the next couple to get both people across also move on. Then, do that a third time. [Some great moves on the flipping platform, hahaha!]
Round 4: [what? Is this why the episode is sooooo long? ANOTHER weed-them-out round? grrrr...] This round starts with some mini-interviews... first the guys, then the girls. Beach Bums, Party People, and Bartenders are left. The guys all say that they'd ask out the girls in real life... the girls aren't as in to the guys. Okay, back to the game... Singles Bar. Elevated ten feet above the water, everyone is on individual pedestals. A sweeper arm comes around, and you have to jump over it, though it gets higher as time moves on. Last person to remain standing has to wait until their partner is the last one standing in order to move on... tricky. and lengthy.
WipeoutZone: Chairborne (ride a chair as it launches at an upward angle and soars you into out over the water), then Over-and-Out (very large platforms are on a rotating block... there are several possible ways to wedge yourself on them to ride around and off again, or you can run on and run off. But you have to get by both of them to move on!), then PointBreak (climb up a staircase as 500 gallons of water dumps on you. Then go down a slide and land on a platform... but the entire apparatus is spinning so it's difficult to judge when to slide), then CoinToss (get across a bunch of spinning-end-to-end cylinders). Your team's combined time is what we're using, and they alternate going. Bartenders and BeachBums are competing. Lauren from BeachBums is first. She falls far on Over-and-Out, then falls again. She does the jump-on-run-jump-off approach when nothing else is working. [at least she stopped trying stupid moves!] She lost a shoe messing up the timing on Pointbreak! She finishes at 13:50, with two attempts on CoinToss. Katrina from Bartenders is next. She rushes the Over-and-Out, falls off, then makes it. She slides early from PointBreak but does great on CoinToss, finishing with 12:02. BeachBum Mark goes next, screws up Over-and-Out twice (just not making the jump off well), and takes two tries on the PointBreak as well. CoinToss throws him off and he needs a second try, but he finishes with 22:07 total for the team. Bartender Marcus is last. He struggles on the Over-and-Out, and withe everything, really. He runs out of time after falling on CoinToss. [I got kinda tired watching all those attempts... four people is a lot to go through the Zone...]
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