“On your mark… get set… GO!”

3 minute read

October 6, 2008, 2:47 PM

So I found an episode of the syndicated version of Double Dare on YouTube. It’s here, here, and here. I especially love the third part, which contains the obstacle course. Those were always fun to watch. I actually wanted to be a contestant on Double Dare one day, but you know how it is. During much of Double Dare’s run, I was far too young to actually be a contestant, and then by the time I was about contestant age, my interests had shifted.

Of course, that was the show to watch in its time. And it was always odd that early on, both teams wore red uniforms, but the one side was most definitely blue. I remember thinking, about time! when the team to host Marc Summers’ right (our left) finally started wearing blue uniforms. But yeah, this was my show. I could even recite the rules perfectly:

I’m going to ask you a question, and if you don’t know the answer or think the other team hasn’t got a clue, you can dare them to answer it for double the bucks. But be careful, because they can always double dare you back for four times the amount, and then you have to either answer that question or take the physical challenge.

Yes, I was a Double Dare geek in my day. What can I say? And then my mother also made things quite amusing as well. First of all, take a look at the third clip for a moment:

At five seconds in, the end-of-the-round buzzer goes off – two short blasts on the buzzer to signal that the round is over. My mother thought that sounded like someone had gas. Marc would say on the show: “And when you hear this sound: (*BUZZ BUZZ*)” and then Mom would say, “It means I have eaten too many beans and have to go to the bathroom.” Yes, nothing could beat a little flatulence humor to make me, at the tender age of five, crack up. In fact, that line still makes me laugh. Mom of course now denies ever having said such a thing. But Sis and I know better.

Then there was the valentine’s episode. That was odd, where they used the regular double-buzz for the end of the first round, but then they substituted a kissing noise (which Marc described as sounding like a “rubber bee”) for the second round. And Harvey was dressed as a cupid, complete with lipstick. Mmmmkay…

And then I recall back when we lived in Rogers, Arkansas, Northwest Park had a rotating barrel as one of the things you could play in. I loved it, because it was like being in the “One-Ton Human Hamster Wheel” obstacle from the obstacle course. I had fun with that piece of play equipment. It seems like that one was usually either the first or the last part of the course. Just like it seemed how if the Sundae Slide was used, they would usually place it as number six.

And of course, one of my favorite moments is the rowboat incident:

I always found it amusing not so much for the prank itself, but for Marc’s reaction. He just couldn’t control his own laughter. After all, first the little guy was in the Tank. Fine. Mark sinks him, and they go on. Then he’s in the Slime Canal. Okay, sure. Marc starts to lose it. Then later, the little guy is on the Blue Plate Special. That makes no sense, since it’s rowing on top of a pizza. Then finally, even though the clip above doesn’t show it, they also put the guy on the Suspension Bridge, which makes even less sense than the Blue Plate Special, and that’s really a stretch in and of itself.

However, I will say this: the show jumped the shark with Family Double Dare. There were too many people on stage at once, and thus each individual contestant saw less action as a result, and you could tell they didn’t know what to do with all of those people. Some physical challenges only called for two people, and in others, they would have three people just getting slopped on (remember the “glitch” TV set?).

So there you have it…

Web site: David's Double Dare Domain, all about the show

Song: The obstacle course theme music

Quote: Favorite quote was what a red-team contestant said on a Nickelodeon episode. She described one of her interests as, "Going to the bathroom with Paul and Eileen." It makes one wonder what that's about, but then again, maybe we don't want to know. Still, it's amusing.

Categories: Television