Hopefully fans enjoyed the most recent batch of games, because Vulture.com now reports that Cash Cab has just gotten its third strike and been kicked to the curb by Discovery.
The multiple Emmy winning game show's run has spanned nearly seven years, and over 200 episodes, and was based off a similarly successful European program. For those unfamiliar with the format, each game begins when host Ben Bailey picks up a random NYC commuter looking for a ride, then the passenger is subjected to a series of general knowledge questions, while racking up cash with every right answer along the way. Stopping at a red light triggers a multi-part Red Light Challenge question. The game is over when either the contestant's destination is reached, or the player gets three questions wrong and is kicked out of the cab. At the conclusion of a winning game, players can keep their winnings or go double or nothing on a video bonus question.
You wouldn't think that simple of a premise would spawn anything but a novelty act, but Cash Cab has only grown in viewership as the years have gone by. While it doesn't get amazing numbers, it does very well for an afternoon game show and is also very inexpensive to produce. All these factors lead me to wonder exactly why Discovery chose to drop the axe now? A change in upper management? Ben Bailey wanted out? I guess we'll probably never know. It certainly wasn't due to lack of critical acclaim. Cab beat out both The Price Is Right and Jeopardy to win three back to back Daytime Emmys for best game show from 2008-10. Host Bailey also won his own statue in 2010. Discovery even produced two spin-offs in Cash Cab: After Dark and Cash Cab: Chicago. Re-runs of the show are set to continue in syndication, and producers do have the option of shopping it around, but let's face it, the cab is probably stuck in the impound lot permanently.
Will you miss taking a ride in the Cash Cab?