In a 2002 episode of Friends, Matt LeBlanc’s Joey announces that he is auditioning to host Bamboozled, a proposed game show with nonsensical rules.
To the confusion of Ross (David Schwimmer) and Chandler (Matthew Perry), Bamboozled is described as a general knowledge quiz involving a spinning “Wheel of Mayhem”, a “Ladder of Chance” and a “Wicked Wango Card” that determines whether you go “higher or lower” – a concept Joey cannot explain.
Ramsay’s new BBC series, which started this week, has drawn unflattering comparisons to Bamboozled.
Bank Balance is a question-and-answer quiz show in which contestants must successfully balance gold bars on a board after they answer a question correctly. If the board tips over, they lose everything.
But to confuse matters, there are 12 “zones” and 12 “stacks” of bars, along with “penalty bars” for incorrect answers, “zero bars” that don’t add money to the balance, and something called “pick again” credits.
The show has so far left viewers baffled, drawing comparisons to the memorable Friends episode.
“Errrr what the hell is Gordon Ramsay’s Bank Balance all about?” wrote one viewer. “Is it Bamboozled?”
“Just turned on Bank Balance and I don’t have a single clue what is going on,” wrote another. “Anyone remember Bamboozled in Friends? This is where I am right now!”
“Gordon running through how the game works made me think of Joey and Bamboozled in Friends,” tweeted a third. “Far too confusing.”
Bank Balance airs nightly at 9pm on BBC One.
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