I think I probably watched this show because I was craving more "The Apprentice." This one could scarcely be more different from Donald Trump's show, though, and while that's good on the surface, ultimately it's bad.
Whereas Trump's show has structure and logic, "The Benefactor" is run strictly according to Mark Cuban's whim. In the first 20 minutes or so of the pilot, he ejected one participant for off-handedly remarking that the game would probably be "stupid." Guess what, Mark? Your game IS stupid. Oops, no million for me.
The concept -- that anyone can be booted at any time, for any reason -- seemed promising at first. But as it played out in the pilot, it just seemed mean. And when Cuban chose between two bootees by making them play a game of Jenga, it turned into survival of the most obnoxious as one player taunted the other mercilessly throughout the game. The only person on the show who came off as more of a wa**er than William (the eventual winner of the Jenga match) is Cuban himself.
I don't think I'll be watching "The Benefactor" again. It's not even good train-wreck TV. It's just not very interesting, and on the rare occasions that it becomes interesting, it's unpleasant. Maybe Richard Branson's show will be better ... otherwise, I'll just have to wait out the days between episodes of "The Apprentice." Curse you, Donald Trump!
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