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I Have Seen the Enemy, and His Name is MC Cashmere Luxury

January 20, 2012
Winter Wipeout

The other night my girlfriends and I gathered for our weekly Girls Night Out, which turned into a Girls Night In as it was cold and snowy outside. We found ourselves sipping wine and flipping TV channels aimlessly while chatting about our days. We eventually settled on ABC’s Winter Wipeout, and I can say without hesitation that this is the dumbest thing I have ever seen on television.

The premise is simple: a group of adventurous young guys and girls attempt to conquer a giant obstacle course à la American Gladiators, with a few small changes: the obstacles are bigger, wetter, and there are inexplicably lots of bubbles. It’s like they’re trying to recreate an Ibiza foam party or something. The obstacles are, of course, extremely challenging, and no contestant seems to make it through without at least one knock-off into the giant sudsy pool below. Contestants advance through each round until there are just three left standing, who then compete for the $50,000 cash prize.

Now, don’t get me wrong; there are a lot of things I would do for $50,000. But being a contestant on Wipeout isn’t one of them. The reason is simple: to be a contestant, you have to be certifiably insane.

As proof, take a look at some of the contestants from the episode Ice, Ice Baby. You have Christian Debernardi, who came dressed as an Oscar statue in a skin-tight, gold lamé unitard. Michelle Assadi, self-described as a wannabe Kardashian who “likes to get sticky.” Carly Smith, who dresses as and demands to be called Wonder Woman. Sky Bartlett, who lives in a log cabin he built himself and plays the bones. The unnamed taxidermy enthusiast who wears a dead wolf on her head and brings a stuffed squirrel with her to the show. Abner Ramirez, a country music songwriter and the token “normal guy.” And, of course, Austin James, otherwise known as MC Cashmere Luxury, who looks like the bastard love child of John Oates.

The obstacles are ridiculous, the wipeouts are epic, and the show’s hosts, John Anderson and John Henson, pun and deadpan their way through 43 minutes of cringe-inducing, wince-worthy television. The “on the ground” talent is Vanessa Lachey, who manages to look both uncomfortable and self-loathing most of the time. But she puts on a brave face and keeps at least three feet between herself and the contestants, and really, who can blame her?

Vanessa LachayThe winner of this particular episode is MC Cashmere Luxury and his amazing mustache. The fact that this man walked away with $50,000 while I’ll be paying student loans for the next twenty-five years makes me die a little on the inside.

Reality television gets dumber and dumber every year, with no end in sight and no hope for improvement. We are not that far away from Ow My Balls. I feel about reality television the way Wil Wheaton feels about the Kardashians. The only thing that keeps me from going all Walden Pond is the fact that good, smart, clever television is still being created: Parks & Rec, New Girl, Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Justified (yes, Justified!). Without those bright spots on the airwaves, I would lose all hope.

I think (I hope?) that at some point, we will reach the end of stupid reality TV. Someday we will start moving back toward thoughtful, intelligent programming. There has to be a point beyond which we will not venture, right? Right?

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10 Comments
  1. Chris S permalink
    January 20, 2012 6:37 pm

    I couldn’t disagree with you more. Wipeout is meant to be an over the top comedy of contestant personalities and obstacles. It’s not to be taken seriously, that’s what Justified is for. The show is hilarious and entertaining *because* it’s so dumb and because of those wonderful red balls!

    • March 26, 2014 3:24 pm

      I have a different prevpectise that many of the people that have answered may not agree. First of all, I read all your previous posts (I’m guessing that no one else did). What your ex made your son do is called an EXERCISE! If your son plays football or baseball, this stance is par for the course. And basketball coaches have been known to make players do this EXERCISE for entire practices. 20 or 30 minutes is a slap on the wrist.I coach several sports, and all my teams have policies that negative reports from teachers or parents warrants additional EXERCISE during practice. So we would have punished your child for 2 hours, not 20 minutes. So after your son’s legs started shaking and he swore to God he couldn’t stand any more we would make him lay on his back and raise his legs 6 inches for 20 or 30 minutes until he begged us to get in the 2 point stance again. This ma’am is called FOOTBALL PRACTICE not child abuse. There have been many of single mothers that have drug their child kicking and screaming to our practices begging not to tell the coaches that they got in trouble at home or school. And our team has several officers from the Los Angeles Police Department as coaches and parents. These same police officers are dishing out these punishements. So you added that your ex spanked him. Spanking your child is not illegal or abusive, and he would not be removed from the home for such an incedence. From your previous post, you say dad does not usually spank and if your son plays for your ex, then it’s safe to say that they are close. So your ex punished him in a fashion that he will not soon forget. I am willing to bet you that your son will not miss assignments anytime in the near future.

  2. January 22, 2012 3:21 pm

    If we’re being honest, I don’t believe for a second that any of these contestants are real people — they all reek of being sent over from Central Casting, if you ask me. I think it’s a bunch of movie extras whose agent said “well, they’re looking for a 350 lb. guy over at Wipeout, can you put some crazy ensemble together?”

    • Anonymous permalink
      January 23, 2012 12:33 am

      This is funny, cuz I am Sky Bartle
      tt and I do live in a log cabin I built myself, and I’m not from hollywood.

    • Anonymous permalink
      January 23, 2012 1:23 am

      I was a contestant, I would never want to be famous or get into Hollywood. I am an extremely active person and thought it would be fun to do a huge obstacle course! The chance of being able to pay for graduate school while laughing at myself seemed like a great opportunity. I would do it again in a heartbeat!

  3. Anonymous permalink
    January 24, 2012 10:10 am

    Mmmm…smells like trolls?

  4. mc cashmere luxury permalink
    March 1, 2012 8:48 pm

    Get your head out of your student loan paying brown “tweed” wearing a$$! Wipeout is awesome, heck even my flow is indubitably better sounding than this b!tchy sh!t turd of an article!!!

    • Paul the Geek permalink*
      March 1, 2012 10:21 pm

      B!tchy Sh!t Turd, starting this Fall on ABC!

    • Paul the Geek permalink*
      March 1, 2012 10:21 pm

      Your “flow”? There’s cream for that.

  5. March 30, 2012 7:46 am

    vanessa lachey is hot

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