The Million Second Quiz
By Melissa Camacho,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Family-friendly trivia game is hyped up, confusing.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The goal of the game is to win as much money as possible.
Positive Role Models
Players are motivated by greed as well as the excitement of getting selected for the game.
Iffy words such as "hell" are occasionally audible.
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Products & Purchases
Subway is a major sponsor of the show, and the logo is prominently visible. The series also advertises the game's app throughout.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Occasional references are made to drinking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Million Second Quiz is family friendly, but the rules of the game and process by which players win the large cash prize might be too complicated for younger viewers. Occasional iffy language ("hell") is audible, and a few trivia questions mention drinking or deal with mature topics that will probably go over kids' heads. Subway is a major sponsor, and the company's logo is prominently featured. The show's corresponding app also is promoted throughout.
Where to Watch
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What's the Story?
THE MILLION SECOND QUIZ is a game show that takes place across 11 days, 13 hours, 46 minutes, and 40 seconds. Hosted by Ryan Seacrest from an hour-glass-shaped set built in New York City specifically for the show, it features people competing in trivia games both online and on camera. The first round stars competitors who previously earned a spot on the "money chair," which allows them to rack up a lot of cash ($10 a second) while competing in trivia challenges against members of the studio audience. Those able to make the most money by staying in the chair the longest get to move on to the second phase of the game, where they compete against one of the online game's best players. The third round features the champions of the second round competing against another top competitor who has managed to stay in the money chair during the past 24 hours. Throughout it all, celebrities from various NBC shows, such as The Voice, are shown asking prerecorded questions. Contestants who almost made it to the main competition and "line jumpers" (online players chosen to compete in New York) also are showcased in-between rounds. Throughout it all, the game's four best players of the day get to live on Winner's Row, an area of the set where they can eat, sleep, work out, and watch the competition happen. They settle in but know that the only way to win the large cash prize is to still be living there by the end of the million seconds.
Is It Any Good?
The Million Second Quiz offers an array of fast-paced rounds and challenges, all designed to generate excitement about the fact that the show is offering the largest cash prize in game show history to the player who can stay in the game the longest. The bright lights, specially designed sound stage, online features, and countless reminders about the fact that the show is being broadcast live add to the tension.
It's family friendly, but the show's process is needlessly complicated and confusing. As a result, viewers may find themselves spending most of their time trying to figure out what's going on rather than playing along with contestants. Game show fans may like it, but once you get past the bells and whistles, it doesn't really offer anything different from other trivia shows.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about game shows. What is their appeal? If you had a chance to compete on a game show, would you do it? Why or why not?
What are some of the most popular game shows in American history? What made them famous? Are any of them still on the air today?
- Premiere date: September 9, 2013
- Cast: Ryan Seacrest
- Network: NBC
- Genre: Game Shows
- TV rating: TV-PG
- Last updated: February 26, 2022
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