The Choices are yours, and yours alone.

October 1, 2008 at 9:14 pm (Nickelodeon) (, , , )

For my first real post on this blog, I’d like to review Legends of the Hidden temple. This review came about because of a conversation i had with my friend over at http://bitchlikeageologist.com/ .  And by conversation I mean a series of comments on her lj about her Silver Snakes t-shirt.

Legends of the Hidden Temple was one in the long line of children’s game shows run on Nickelodeon in the late 80’s/early 90’s.  Nickelodeon had some seriously good shit going on during this era, many a weekend in my younger days was spent watching Nickelodeon’s offerings.  Anyway back to the Topic at hand.  LOHT was one of Nickelodeon’s educational shows.  back in the 90’s the government thought that children’s programing was nothing more than elaborate toy commercials and made the networks dedicate a portion of their programming to educational content.  Each episode of LOHT was about a different legend, and throughout the show, we would be told various facts about this legend.

The show was hosted by Kirk Fogg but what everybody remembers was his “assistant” Olmec.  Olmec was this kick ass giant talking head that informed the players and the viewers about that episodes legend.  The  Players were divided into six two player teams: the Red Jaguars, Blue Barracudas, Green Monkeys, Orange Iguanas, Purple Parrots and Silver Snakes.  My favorite team were the Green Monkeys, mainly because I think monkeys rule.  Most of the other teams were usually  fairly nondescript except for the Silver Snakes and Purple Parrots.  For some reason the Silver Snakes was usually manned by the most evil cheating douchebags the producers could find, and the Purple Parrots by the stupidest kids they could find. (If I insulted your favorite team, tough luck, you should have been rooting for the Green Monkeys :p)

Each episode began with all 6 teams competing in a game to cross the temple’s moat.  this games usually involved crawling along a rope or leaping from raft to raft.  The first 4 teams to make it across moved onto the next round.  The instructions for crossing the moat were usually fairly simple, but somehow the kids always got it wrong.  If they were told to get a cross by crawling along a rope, they would usually do everything but use the rope.

During the next stage of the game, Olmec would tell the remaining 4 teams about that day’s legend and teh artifact hidden inside the temple.  After hearing Olmec’s tale the teams would have to answer questions about it.  Here we see  yet again, how stupid kids on these shows were.  The questions asked were the easiest questions every, and I thought they were easy back when I was 12. They’d ask something like, what was Billy the Kid’s first name, WIlliam, John, or Bob?  And they would answer john or bob.  This part of the show also showcased the Silver Snakes ability to cheat.  They always knew the answers, like they were told so before hand.  And the buttons the contestants had to step on never worked, except for the Silver Snakes.  Each question a team answered correctly allowed them to move down one step.  the first two teams to reach the bottom of the stairs moved on to the temple games.

The Temple Games were your generic Nickelodeon game show games, the kind of stuff you’d find on Double Dare or Guts.  Most games involved climbing up a wall and bring back some object, or runnign against a bungee cord and bring back some object, or going down a slip and slide and bringing back some object.  Every single temple game involved collecting something.  Each game that a team won, gave them a piece of a pendant of life.  The first two temple games were worth a half pendant each, and the last one was worth one whole pendant.  these pendants were used in the last, and best part of the show, the run through the temple.

The team that wont he most pendants, got to run through an elaborately set up temple and try to retrive an artifact related to that days legeng, and bring it back to the entrance in an absurdly small amount of time.  I think it was like a minute, again this was pretty much the norm for Nickelodeon game shows.  The temple was divided in 12 or 13 rooms.  Some of the rooms had guards in them, and if you didn’t have a pendant of life to give them, then you were not allowed to continue and your teammate had to finish the run for you.  each room had some sort of “puzzle” for you to figure out.  I put puzzle in quotations because a blind, deaf, mentaly handicapped baby could figure them out.  Does that mean our contestants could figure it out?  Hell no!  The most infamous of these rooms was The Shrine of the Silver Monkey.  To get out of this room, all a player had to do was assemble the monkey statue which consisted of three parts: the base, the body, and teh head.  Nobody could ever figure out what order they went in.  I’m serious.  These idiots would try to put on the head first, followed by the base then the body.  Many teams wasted a lot of time in this room.  Every once in awhile there would be a team that wasn’t totally incompetent and could manage to retrieve the artifact and return to the temple gates.  The prize they won was usually a trip to universal studios or space camp.  While a trip to space camp is pretty cool, I miss the prizes they used to give out int he older Nickelodeon shows.  Kids there would win rc cars, computers, robots, etc.

All in all Legends of the Hidden Temple was a pretty fun show to watch back in the day, but it’s much more fun to watch in your 20s and get a laugh yelling at how fuckin stupid the contestants on this show were.

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