'Million Dollar Mile' episode 1: CBS' high-stakes, high-budget response to 'American Ninja Warrior' piques the interest of viewers
CBS premiered one of its most ambitious adventure reality shows, ‘Million Dollar Mile’ on Wednesday, March 27. While the trailers looked promising, it was almost impossible to not compare the show to NBC’s long-running ‘American Ninja Warrior,’ (ANW) and having seen the first episode we can confirm that this assumption is not wrong.
However, the CBS show takes things to a whole new level, significantly increasing the stakes and adding an element of threat that goes beyond inanimate obstacles. CBS has already ordered 10 episodes. Its similarities to ANW lie in the fact that it will be “shutting down the streets of a major city”; ANW is filmed on city streets and locations across the country. However, in this new show, executive produced by LeBron James, the city of Los Angeles turns into a larger than life race course has incorporated various forms of obstacles, which requires the contenders to do wall climbing, swimming, etc. So it's a course designed to be a good balance between feats of speed and agility as well as strength.
Each obstacle is worth a significant amount of money, with the final one – the one that helps the contestant win $1,000,000 would require them to climb a 15-story tall building and zipline to the stage. The big catch is that even as these amateur competitors try to get to the finish line, they will be chased by a professional athlete – the defender.
While the competitor will be given a two-minute head start. How they being chased down by a professional athlete – which includes a triathlete, a stuntman, Tough Mudder and Spartan Racing - would affect their strategy and their concentration is what the show is about. One of the biggest jobs of the show’s host, former NFL quarterback for the Jets, Tim Tebow, is to encourage the contenders, along with the audience. Matt "Money" Smith and Maria Taylor are also co-hosts.
The concept, as ambitious as it sounds, was executed beautifully in the very first episode, and it resonated well with the viewers. “This is the best show I've ever seen! where’s lebron? MILLION DOLLAR MILE,” tweeted one of them, while another added, “This Green Beret climbing up the building like he’s cot damn Spider Man is WILD #MillionDollarMile”
As always there are non –believers, who are convinced that the show and the challenges are fake. However, we are definitely intrigued enough to give the show a few more episodes.
I don't like watching the contestants that I've been cheering for lose and not win money. This game is too hard to be watching everyone walk away with nothing all the time. #MillionDollarMile— Jinx250 (@Jinx250) March 28, 2019
This #MillionDollarMile show is purposely stacked against the contestant but they're having the contestants say what they're going to use the money for and so far in the *first episode* we watched a man lose after trying to win money to pay his dad's cancer bills— Chelsea Rebecca (@carebecc) March 28, 2019
‘Million Dollar Mile’ airs at 9 pm on CBS, on Wednesdays.