By | November 16, 2010


On Sunday, the new short run of Miljoenenjacht began on RTL in the Netherlands (for the uninitiated, this was the original Deal or No Deal). There have been some changes. Some of these are good (I like the big band version of the theme tune), some of these are not so good. However, I will outline the modified format:

  • 1000 people in the audience split into ten blocks of 100, each one representing a region of the Netherlands as suggested by their postcode (the show is still sponsored by the Postcode Lottery – I wonder if that ever did take off properly in Scotland?) Edit: May actually be less than 1,000, but each block is 10 wide and way more than five deep. Perhaps half the audience are actual audience?
  • The quiz is reduced to five multiple choice questions. Instead of whittling the audience away by pitting sections against each other, the quiz now seeks to find the best member of each section – most answers in the quickest time, presumably. This is a) fairer as you only have to rely on yourself, b) apparently quicker except c) it seems to take an age and d) is a lot less fun than the old version.
  • The best player from each section moves on to round two. The ten are split into five pairs of two who will face off head-to-head in a reversioning of an old round. The audience are polled on if they agree on a statement, the contestants must try and predict how many people agree with the statement. The closer answer wins and the player goes through to round three, the loser is out.
  • Between rounds there are still the viewer phone-in competitions, and it looks like one entire randomly-chosen block wins a small prize in each case, and one person from that block also wins €10k. This is all fine and good, except Linda has lost her Random Remote of Doom 🙁
  • There appears to be an “Oprah moment” where everyone in the studio receives a small prize – some sort of video camera in the first episode, but one of them is a bit different as we will see later.
  • Round three works a bit like the old Krishnan Guru-Murphy show Number One – the five remaining contestants are lined up behind desks numbered 1-5, in order of how close their answers were to the actual answer in round two (I think). There will now be three rounds of buzzer quiz, each one 100 seconds in length – get a question right and you swap desks with the person placed higher than you, get it wrong and swap down. Get it wrong whilst on the last desk and you’re blocked from the next question. At the end of the time the person on the last desk is eliminated, earning €1k, €2k or €3k for lasting one, two or three rounds. This leaves two people.
  • What is striking is that a large part of the old show was about temptation and risk – at various points during the show, people would be offered guaranteed cash and prizes to forgo the cases and leave the game (particularly if they thought they were about to be eliminated in a quiz element, for example), and people in the audience would be selected to take their place if they were willing to turn down a nice prize. This aspect appears to have left the show almost completely. A big shame.
  • The semi-final hasn’t changed from last time – a money clock counts up to a secret total, the first person to buzz in takes the money but hands the golden cases to the opponent. If the money reaches the secret limit (usually a significant five-figure amount), a quiz question determines who goes through to the cases, and who goes home empty-handed.
  • Winner selected, it’s time to choose someone else with an interest in what happens. One of the prizes given out earlier has a special sticker on it, whoever owna that prize is given a large bell. Now, this is where we’re guessing a bit – anytime within the first 11 cases, once the winning contestant has selected the case but before it is opened, the person can ring the bell. We think they win whatever is in the case provided it is €50k or lower. Edit: I might have this wrong also – if the case is higher than €50k, they win €50k.
  • And that means its time for another change – they’ve resisted for years, but yes the Dutch have gone down the boring and bland US presentation route with 26 models opening the cases instead on some stairs in front of a large window pretending to be a skyscraper.
  • The new graphics are a bit dull if I’m being honest (not so much new as stylised versions of the US ones), apart from two things: 1) a laser strikes the three biggest amounts off the list, and 2) everything flashes red when it’s time to make a decision. These are quite neat touches.
  • The music is quite good though – very Strachans.
  • Offers appear in a marquee above the models which ususally show a lava-lamp version of the Postcode Loterij ribbon. But they just flash up, which is a rather boring use of the marquee if I’m being honest. Animation!
  • And that’s it really.

Not completely awful by any means, but certainly not something I’m overly excited about. I already don’t think Deal or No Deal works brilliantly as a game if the numbers are too big as it runs the risk of trivialising fairly large amounts of money, or making the risks too great to be worth considering usually, and as such it’s often surprisingly not that tense. But there we are, it’s on Sundays and you can watch it on RTL’s catch-up service. Just remember: Vaandag = Today, Gisteren = Yesterday (if you intend to watch on Monday), Zondag = Sunday.

Meanwhile GSN’s 1 vs 100 began on Monday night with its large but frankly not large enough video-wall and amusingly retained borked US prize system that’s been a massive hit (aside: not a massive hit) the world over, only now with much smaller prizemoney which is only going to exacerbate the problems, I think. The questions are entertaining, falling somewhere between the two original seasons of the show – wittlily written, but not as yet in two-stages as you’d get in the celebrated season one. You can watch the first episode on Youtube here. I quite like Carrie Ann Inaba.

AND FINALLY! The Cube iPod app has been updated. Perimeter has been added as a game (although the timing is a bit suspect, you press the button, it seems to stop two spaces later) and you can now walk away with your virtual monies. Amazing.

17 thoughts on “Milj-moany-jacht

  1. David Howell

    I’m almost positive it’s 500 people still, I’m pretty sure Linda mentioned ‘all 490’ people were to answer a question that applied to everyone in the audience.

    To be honest, if I’d guessed wildly without any prior knowledge of the show, I’d have guessed more than 50 in the block, but less than 100.

    I’m OK with the change to the models-open-the-cases route, seeing as the models were there to begin with, but I’d be a lot more OK with it if the loss of the guessing game meant that the audience actually reacted to anything below €500,000 in the first two rounds. The silly thing is that they really get the crowd going to support their block representative in the second quiz round, and then they’re quiet as mice for the early DoND bit.

    It’s worth noting that the format as it existed for the last couple of runs with the poll-the-audience round at the final six also had no risk/reward decision before the semi-final.

    1. Brig Bother Post author

      Well I counted, I’m pretty sure each block is 10 x 10, unless half of the audience are just audience and not active players. Which I suppose could make sense.

      1. David Howell

        I’ve got it, I think. Notice how every player has a partner or other family member? That’s the other 500 in the studio.

  2. David

    I think that the bell-ringer wins 50K if the case picked is 50K or over- so they win something, either whatever the case is or 50K if it ends up being one of the big ones. It seems for the most part, it’s best to wait until the last minute to ring the bell, unless a lot of the big amounts go very early. The odds are either 11/25 or 10/25 to start (since the finalist’s case is out of play for them)-so it’s about a 40% chance right at the beginning that you’d win 50K.

  3. Tataki

    Bloody models… So boring! Anyways, at least the new theme and set are good.

  4. Mart with an Y not an I

    1 vs 100 USA Ver 2.0
    Hmmm. My first thoughts were – if as a contestant on the main podium and you can’t see the whites of the 100’s eyes then don’t bother bringing the show back. That was it’s USP.

    Then I saw the screen, for the 100 and the host saying that they were sitting in front of webcams. That’s clever, as they all managed to find identical backdrops as each other (I guess either they are all pre-recorded, with the ‘chatty’ bits with the host being operated by a very quick EVS operator, or they were actually live just sitting in a studio next door)

    Still have huge nag that the contestant was found not from the application forms, but from the small ads in the back of Variety under the heading – out of work actresses.

    Oh and the reveal of those from the 100 being knocked out, was far too slow and far too dragged out.

    Still, I suppose doing it this way, may make it more attractive to broadcasters who would have spat the coffeee over the carpet at the budget costs and needing a studio big enough – and if you swap the ‘$’ for ‘£’ having a occasionally won top prize of £50,000 might may ITV interested for the weekday 5pm slot of dread.

    1. Brig Bother Post author

      My understanding is that most are pre-records but some are playing ‘live’. Mobsters will make return appearances regardless if they survive or not.

      1. Ryan

        That is indeed correct, Brig. There were three or four “tape” days where all mobsters answered a huge whack of questions. The mobsters that get called upon “Hi! Box 55! What do you do?” (etc) are indeed there on the days that they tape, to show live reactions (but they’re not doing the quiz at that point).

        I gather this is the way they were able to do it, so I’m just happy to have some new quiz shows rather than none at all…

        Then again, perhaps a move to the UK is in order… Do you suppose they’ll take “Krypton Factor worldwide 1980-1995” or “The Use of Gunge in Childrens’ Shows” as specialist subjects on Mastermind?

  5. Mart with an Y not an I

    Re Miljoenenjacht
    Lovely set. The Europeans can really do nice big sets with lots of nice flashing lights (also see Rabb, Schalg den) but oh dear, John’s sister appears to have a little trouble with those stairs and her heels during the introduction.

    And forget what’s in case 10 – I’ll just want to win what’s holding case 10…
    Anyone know what “Hello love, fancy a pint of Amstel?” is in Dutch?

  6. Travis P

    I have finally spoken to by Dutch friend this morning and confirmed the rules with the bell.

    He or she can use the bell once within the first eleven cases (rounds one and two). When used they can guess the contents of that case. If the amount is €50K or more then that person will win €50K; however, if they contents of that case is below €50K then they will win ever is inside that case.

  7. dr

    Since this Sunday, MJ has a different preliminary round than before. They rearranged the first round and completely eliminated the second round. That means that the new first round is designed to select five people from the audience. This is done by five estimated guess questions which are answered by the entire audience using keypads. After each one, the computer selects the player with the best answer (closest to the correct result). BUT! This doesn`t mean that this contestant automatically moves on to the “Number One” round (Round 3 became Round 2 in this new version). The winning player in each case can opt to select one of five cases (within each one is a valuable prize) instead of the place in the next round. The prize rejected (may it be the place in Round 2 or the valuable prize) will be given away to another audience member. In case that the contestants who gave the best answer to the guessing question chooses the place in Round 2, he also chooses one of the five cases to be given away to the selected audience member.

    1. VierkanteO

      To complete the story – if more than one has the correct answer, obviously, the one with the fastest response is the winner.

      Furthermore, they have added more millions to the final round, for this and the previous series, to make things more interesting.

      1. dr

        Could you probably post some pictures of this new format on your page – like you did on many other shows in NL? I know your page and it`s just great 🙂 I have been looking for the new version of Miljoenenjacht on the homepage, but there is a restriction so that I cannot see the episode in the country I live in -.-


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