Max Headroom: Season 2, Episode 5

Whackets (16 Nov. 1987)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy | Sci-Fi
8.6
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Viewers are unable to tear their eyes away from a seemingly mindless new game show called "Whackets." Meanwhile, Big-Time is finally on top of the ratings. But is Big-Time just a pawn in a much larger game of addiction?

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Title: Whackets (16 Nov 1987)

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Cast

Episode credited cast:
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Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Lauren
Tiana Barron ...
Bobby
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Richard Frank ...
Biller
Hank Garrett ...
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Mr. Bartlett (as Andrea Katsulas)
Bert Kramer ...
Ziskin
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Haskel
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Craig Schaefer ...
Cop#1
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Viewers are unable to tear their eyes away from a seemingly mindless new game show called "Whackets." Meanwhile, Big-Time is finally on top of the ratings. But is Big-Time just a pawn in a much larger game of addiction?

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Comedy | Sci-Fi

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16 November 1987 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Neat episode
5 October 2010 | by (The Last New Jersey Drive-In on the Left) – See all my reviews

The indie TV station Big-Time gets on top of the ratings by broadcasting the utterly mindless, yet compulsively watchable game show "Whackets." Unbeknownst to Big-Time, said game show has a a lethally addictive subliminal program inside of it that makes the viewers euphoric when they see it. It's up to Edison (well played by Matt Frewer) to expose this scam before "Whackets" goes global. Arthur Seller's barbed and engrossing script not only delivers a potent and provocative central message about the dangerously addictive allure of idiotic no-brainer televised pap, but also covers some dark thematic territory on how money and ratings take precedent over morals and the mental health of viewers. William Morgan Sheppard contributes a fine spiky turn as merry punk Blank Reg while Concetta Tomei is in splendidly sassy'n'sexy form as Reg's partner Blank Dominique. Moreover, it's fun to see a pre-stardom Bill Maher as smarmy and opportunistic programmer Haskel. Charles Rocket deftly pours on the deliciously oozing sleaze as the ever-slimy Grossberg. Paul Goldsmith's funky smoky cinematography gives the show a cool noir look. Michael Hoenig's rousing score likewise hits the stirring spot. And Max is positively sidesplitting when he degenerates into a pathetic babbling fool after he's exposed to "Whackets."


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