Hello, THIS is an American Hero. Why are we even still talking about this?
The concept of TNT's The Hero is pretty simple, though the execution is anything but. From the website:
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson brings to TNT an epic competition testing the strength, courage, and integrity of a diverse group of nine individuals. Each week, the contestants will be tested, physically, mentally, and morally, as they try to prove that they truly deserve the title of "The Hero" and the life-changing grand prize that goes with it. With temptations around every corner, America watches to see what the contestants are willing to overcome, undergo, and sacrifice on behalf of themselves and others. In the end, it's America's call on who will be "The Hero."Yes, it's hosted by The Rock. Apparently, an ex-pro wrestler turned adventure movie "actor" is an expert on heroism. Because this is America.
If every episode is going to follow the same format as the premiere, there are three challenges presented to the contestants. First, a team challenge, where they compete together to achieve a common goal and receive a code. Then a smaller team (selected by the larger team) works to overcome a second challenge--to succeed they must overcome a physical test and enter the code in a computer within the time allowed. THEN, the entire group must select one person from the smaller team to compete in a solo challenge. If the individual succeeds in the challenge, $50,000 is added to the overall pot that the winner gets at the end of the show. But the individual challenge winner also has the option to take the money for themselves, and the rest of the contestants will be told he/she didn't succeed in the challenge and be none the wiser.
Yeah, it's kind of complicated, but I was entertained and I like the twist that it's not just physical challenges--there are some ethical challenges involved as well. For the most part, the contestants seem slightly more tolerable than your average reality show competitors--and they are at least physically prepared. There's a fitness instructor, a trauma surgeon, a construction worker, a wrestler (of course)....and an NFL cheerleader (of course again). There are already some personality clashes and douchebaggery, but hey, it's reality tv. You gotta give the people what they want, and in-fighting is part of the deal. Oh, and the way the competitors idolize The Rock is laughable. It's not like he's Tyra Banks, after all.
I'll definitely stick with The Hero for a few more episodes, and it's fun, inoffensive summer viewing. I don't believe for one second that the winner will be a hero or deserving of the title in any manner, but hyperbole is also part of the deal.
The Hero airs Thursday nights at 8pm on TNT. You can watch the entire first episode on their website.
Man, if they had gotten THIS guy to host the show, it would be so much more badass. In other news, who wants to watch this movie with me sometime?