Wow, it's been ages since I last posted. Anyway, I just got caught up with all the episodes after being weeks behinds for weeks.
I was totally blown away by Brian Arnold especially after seeing the massacre beforehand. In my opinion, this is the hardest 3rd stage of all time- it combined the diabolical start of Sasuke 25's third stage course with the brutal Hang Climbing/Spider Flip combo, and concluded with Flying Bar which is the hardest final obstacle yet.
It sounds like Brian was able to improve on the first three obstacles of his redo, but I still don't think the improvement offset the energy he spent on his first attempt. Some production errors are unforeseeable, but they certainly could have avoided the Cliff Hanger literally breaking apart.
I'm really excited for next season, and I hope to see more of the third stage specialists be able to attempt the third stage (I'm looking at you Ryan and David ) .
And on a completely selfish note, I hope ANW prelims come to Austin. We're hosting the X-Games; ANW's hopefully next
Post by RiderLeangle on Sept 20, 2013 18:55:04 GMT -5
Completely agree about Stage 3, I thought ANW4 had the hardest stage 3 ever and then this year they up it even more by increasing the difficulty of the Floating Board as well as fixing the rest periods (an error they shouldn't have let go but I guess they were trying to force success on brent but whatever)
You think you're hyped for next year? Imagine how I feel entering it lol
And I hope prelims come back to Baltimore, that was a great location, both in scenery for a regional and how perfect of a location it was for me
EDIT: BTW they seem to have the Spider Flip specs right, it's just they gave a bigger rest bar (but that's understandable since Japan has done that too, just not with the SF
Post by dudesky1000 on Sept 24, 2013 19:54:55 GMT -5
Okay, so, I finally got to watch this so I can be an active member again lol. I was a bunch of weeks behind and luckily I was able to avoid most spoilers, so it was actually a pretty fun watch.
Overall I have to say that this season has probably been the best in terms of presentation. They've begun to catch on to what makes Sasuke so exciting to watch. Not entirely, but they have *begun*. The first thing I notice is the music. I really think the addition of non-generic music for key moments like competitor profiles, stage previews, clears and shocking failures does a lot to elevate the overall electricity of the show. Also, in addition to last season, ANW has definitely made a name for itself in the presentation of the course itself, which looks absolutely beautiful and oodles of fun to play on, while still looking menacing when it matters. There are still a few technical bloops which they have to overcome, like syncing the clocks and some obstacle construction, but more on that later...first the good stuff.
I think they have found a better balance compared to previous seasons when it comes to giving all of the competitors the respect that they deserve at one point or another, either with a competitor profile or by simply showing their full run. They still give profiles for nearly EVERY competitor, but they seem a lot tighter than they used to and they've begun to figure out how to mix things up a little to keep the pace of the show going (i.e. they've mostly stopped giving profiles to the 'just another parkour guy' type characters, now they focus more on sibling competitor story lines, those who have put a lot at stake, walk-ons, jokers, fan favorites, women, pro athletes and veterans). The length of the profiles no longer necessarily correlate with the results, which is kind of nice--there were a lot more 'shockers' that came from nowhere. Also, while they seem to be showing every last dang run, occasionally they will rather ruthlessly digest even veterans, which although is a negative to fans of those competitors, something Sasuke has been doing since its beginning to keep you on your toes.
The overall design of the course was better than years past in my opinion. They came up with some nicely inventive obstacles (albeit they came up with a few clunkers here and there), and took notes on which didn't work so well last season. No doubt, there were still some issues (Jumping spider, DSL, Metal Spin) but mostly things were fair and square, especially with lenient time limits (also bringing back the 30 second stage 3 time limit). Many slips ups even on the jumping spider were simply because competitors didn't come prepared with the right footwear.
Now the bad.
Is it just me, or does it seem like the season just lasts... a really, really long time??? We go through allllll these weeks for regional qualifying, and then regional finals, only to see competitors vanish in seconds on the First Stage in Vegas. Like, okay, I guess by prolonging the whole show it seems more like a journey, but can't we just do a 'qualifying' episode and a 'finals' episode and just get straight to Vegas already? Sasuke Trials never went on for 8 weeks!! And for years the STQer's were just digested one after the other, and until they managed to consistently clear the First Stage they'd literally only get less air-time combined than Mr. Octopus (at least he'd get a profile and would never be digested). Just a thought. Seeing yourself on TV is great, and it's nice for everyone to be able to enjoy that feeling. But honestly, it just takes too long to get to the good stuff. And it's because they stretch it out, I'm afraid, that we grow so tired of the commentary, the profiles, the repeated fails on the same obstacles, etc.
Jenn Brown, whom I feel really sympathetic for. You can tell she is trying so hard, and none of this is really her fault, but I have to say I think she's going to become very unpopular if the director/producers continue their antics with the sobbing-bad-news interviews. Again, she is obviously just doing her job and obeying orders of the people behind the camera, but I can't see the competitors or fanbase warming up to her after the way they handled Andrew Lowes (spelling?) and Flip's interviews, along with several other awkward interviews that took place all season. Although the 'we miss Haislip" mantra has been repeated ad nauseum, I think it had more to do with the fact that she had become friendly with the competitors over time, and that at least in failure, the competitors would be met by a friend who really cared in their interviewer.
As for Akbar, I actually have no issues with him at all. Despite repeating such obvious and sometimes off-handed remarks like '90 degrees' and 'looking to one side' or 'grabbed it but bailed out', most of what he's saying is, well, kind of true. Anyway I think he's fine. Admittedly he may not have the same enthusiasm for the show as say, Jimmy Smith did but eh, I can live with him. He does occasionally make a genuinely funny comment. Matt of course is irreplaceable and has an enthusiasm for the 'sport' as they call it, that nobody else quite has. He's obviously very friendly and personable with everyone involved and is genuinely excited when somebody does well, and really crushed when he sees failure. Heck, I bet he wishes he could participate with them!
And of course there are the oddities... the UCH ledge snapping off mid-run, the lights going off, they Andrew L. clock/interview mishap, and the undoubted clowning that goes on at the regionals. Blah blah blah. This stuff happens every season, and things like this have even happened on Sasuke from time to time. The obstacles in Vegas were clearly better designed than last season, and the results show-- the way the results panned out speaks for themselves... we had rookies going into the coveted Third stage.
Anyway, I was more pleased than ever with the spinoff, and am excited to see the next one. They surely can't be cancelling this anytime soon. I don't think they'll even consider canceling until they've got a winner or at least the Final Stage has been reached three or more competitions in a row without a winner. The show still doesn't hold a candle up to Sasuke in terms of a complete package, but they are admittedly catching up with the route Sasuke seems to be taking...
Higher! Higher! We can't stop the tower's gettin' higher! Higher!
12 weeks is just too long for any show of this type. Ratings proved it. NBC has to hire better editors.
Agreed, despite the way they did things this year there were still plenty of cut runs from regionals, so at that point might as well just go back to the system ANW4 had for ANW6 for regionals but continue what they did this year as well, Qualifying on Esquire, finals on NBC, Midoriyama starts on Esquire and continues on NBC and stays there
The only way they could make ANW 6 12 weeks or longer is if they significantly differentiated the Qualifying round from the City Finals round.
The first 4 weeks could be the Qualifying course but with all 10 obstacles instead of 6. The top 50 would move to the City Finals.
The City Finals could then be a series of 5 elimination challenges such as a push up challenge, an "infinite" Salmon Ladder challenge (how many rungs can you go up?), an "increasingly getting taller" Warped Wall challenge, etc. where 6 competitors would get eliminated each round to get down to 20 for the region. They could do a lot of fun challenges that would be different enough from the Qualifying round but still relevant to the Ninja Warrior course.
The final 4 weeks would be the course with the 80 region qualifiers + 20 Wild Cards.
8 weeks of same-format course running was just too much.
Post by RiderLeangle on Sept 27, 2013 12:03:44 GMT -5
Yeah, that sounds like too much of a change. In fact it almost sounds like a less reality show version of Boot Camp which I don't think anyone liked... I like the two course format they've been doing the whole time, yeah it'd be more ideal if it was a different course but yeah... I kind of wish they just switched obstacles between rounds (this would have been great for ANW4 when they switch up the regionals but give the other regions obstacle to the other, this was sorta done in Venice when the Pipe Slider was replaced with the Devil Steps for finals)