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Monday March 24, 2008 12:56 pm

Truth in TV: Can Anyone Win Big?




Posted by K.C. Morgan Categories: Games, Prime Time, Reality, FOX, Gossip,

Moment of Truth

Eight juicy episodes have been watched by millions, and the promos for the show just keep coming. I must admit, FOX’s is truly a guilty TV pleasure and I’m entranced the entire time the show is on the screen. But after seeing so many come and go, one question remains: can anyone win big on this show?

It all sounds so very simple. You sit down and answer questions - truthfully - as family and friends (oh yeah, and the live studio audience and the millions of home viewers) look on. Answer 21 of them without telling a fib, and you’ll walk away half a million bucks richer. And yet, no one has done it. In fact, no one has even come close to doing it.

Why? The show uses a polygraph, commonly called the lie detector, to determine which questions will be asked. Prior to taping, contestants get strapped in and asked at least fifty different questions. From this pool, twenty-one of those questions are selected. Polygraph results, to this day, are highly controversial. Statistics show that these machines are not 100% accurate - more like 80%, depending on the amount of questions asked. This means that far fewer than half (50%) of the contestants on The Moment of Truth will be completely free of polygraph error during their rounds of questioning.

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Moment of TruthCould Moment of Truth literally be a game show that cannot be won? Some of the show’s contestants have seemed shocked when caught in a lie - how much of this is an act, one can only guess. One telling aspect of the game is that no single contestant has walked away with more than $100,000. Those who have stopped at this tier have managed to collect their winnings, with hopefully only minimal damage done to their inter-personal relationships. Those who have pressed on beyond this tier are invariably caught in a lie and walk away with absolutely nothing - usually being ousted on a question that seems fairly easy to answer (remember the chick who got called on the “Do you think you’re a good person” question?).

Moment asks, at the top of each hour, whether there are any truthful people left in the world. To find the answer to this question, offers them a fistful of cold, hard cash. But the fact of the matter is, truly honest people have nothing to hide and no big secrets to share. And, to be fully truthful here, FOX would never put such a boring person on the show. People aren’t going to sit still for an hour while someone answers questions that don’t inspire tears, gasps of outrage, and reality TV drama.

Is the show unwinnable? Wouldn’t that be extremely clever of FOX if it was?

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Forum Discussion

this is the one post of yours i actually like glad prison break is back and sarah connor chronicles is starting up could care less about american idol and moment of truth, although my co-worker loves both shows -dan

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