Throughout the game, players will work their way up a money ladder either by answering questions correctly or by confidently giving incorrect answers - and persuading others that they are accurate.A mix between a traditional quiz show and the card game called Cheat (also known as I Doubt It or Bullshit). We'll see players working their way up the money ladder by answering questions correctly or wrongly. They can and will, get called out, however.
But if they’re bullshitting, at least one of the other three contestants has to believe them for the contestant to move on. Before each round, Mandel asks them whether the hot seat player wants to move on and risk their winnings or go home with the money won to that point.
Bullsh*t The Gameshow is a bit strange because its concept is simple and complicated at the same time. How is that possible? Well, on the surface, it’s about people lying and other people trying to detect the lie. But when you start getting into the money ladder and the shenanigans with locks and what determines who stays and goes, and who ends up in the hot seat, the show gets bogged down with all of those details.
Which is why it’s fortunate that the show’s producers and contestant coordinators have made a conscious effort to find contestants that are beyond being merely enthusiastic. They are damn close to being performers; they’re bantering with Mandel, giving performative monologues when they talk about their decision on whether they voted for BS or not.
Of course, you need some degree of performance skills in order to be a believable bullshitter, but it feels like the format is such a slog that, if it weren’t for both the contestants’ personalities and Mandel’s constant goofing around, the show would fall flat on its face. We did appreciate that the less dramatic questions — like one where everyone thinks the hot seat player was right — were skipped through. But the pacing is still a little too slow.
The money ladder is also a bit flawed, mainly because the contestant has the ability to lock in an as soon as they get past the first, $1000 rung. Listen, $1000 is better than nothing, but it takes a little of the element of risk out, especially when the contestant uses their final lock 3 levels up, at $50k. It feels like most contestants will not take the risk and do the same two locks over and over, which is likely not what the producers intended. We also wonder how many people would really roll the dice on the $1 million level when they’re at $750k.