Have you found that adult life involves far too few childhood party games? If so, then The CW has the answer to your prayers with Oh Sit!, which premieres tonight at 8pm and is billed as a “high-stakes, high-octane musical chairs competition, in which 20 thrill-seeking daredevils race head to head through five physically demanding, obstacle course-style eliminations as they each compete to claim a chair, to the sounds of a live band.” Fusing a preschool pastime with extreme physical challenges seems unlikely, but it’s hardly the weirdest game show premise in history. In celebration of its debut, we’ve rounded up some of the silliest and most bizarre examples of one of American TV’s oldest genres (we’re not even going to get into Japanese game shows here, because that’s a whole other can of weird). Meet a talking Olmec head, relive a slacker classic, and experience a show where John McEnroe tries to get your blood pressure up, after the jump.
In 1987, when MTV was still great, the network premiered what you might call a meta-game show. The purposely DIY-looking Remote Control was supposed to be set in the basement of its host, Ken Ober, a guy who wanted so badly to be a game show host that he created his very own TV studio. With a young Colin Quinn as his sidekick, Ober quizzed college-age contestants with questions from nine pop-culture categories represented as “channels” on the TV behind him. Midway through the game, competitors were treated to a snack (which was often simply dumped on their head), and sometimes the disembodied voice of Ken’s mother contributed her two cents.