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"The Mole 2: The Next Betrayal" Review

By Shawn McKenzie 06/04/2002

I know that technically this show debuted last year, but apparently I was the only person who watched it. The ratings were so bad that it became the first competitive reality show that I can remember to be pulled before the end of its run. Since ABC is pretending that it didn't exist before now, I will too (okay, maybe I won't.)

It is always good when a show listens to the viewers and improves a show based on their concerns. It also helps that they had the benefit of using the first season's Mole, Kathryn Price, as a consultant.

I also think that they read my mother's mind too when they did "The Mole 2: The Next Betrayal." She loved the show, but she was very confused by the rules and how the contestants were "executed." I didn't know what she was talking about, because I understood the execution process perfectly. Anyway, apparently she wasn't the only one confused, because they have simplified the rules and made it possible for the viewer to witness the entire process. Instead of showing random questions during the execution, they show all of the questions.

In addition to simplifying the execution process, they have made more changes to make it more shocking, enjoyable, and interactive. In the first episode, they burn the bags of the contestants, which included some very personal items. When I first saw this, my mouth dropped. I couldn't believe they had done that! I was genuinely relieved when I found out that they hadn't really burned the bags. Secondly, Anderson Cooper has really lightened up. I don't know why he was so stiff the first season. I suspect it was because he was trying to be mysterious. I like the more playful Cooper better. Finally, the producers have made some clues as to who the Mole might be stand out so the viewers can keep guessing. They have gone so far as to point out the suspicious activities of the contestants on their website.

I was so glad when I read that ABC was bringing back "The Mole" that I went around to all the people at the radio station I work for and informed them of the happy news (of course, they all being sports junkies and not TV geeks like me, said "The Mole what?") The show is much more fun than last season. It is currently the most exciting, best reality show currently on the air. The bag-burning thing alone sold me! The only mistake ABC made last year was putting it on Fridays (where not even my mom watched it!) Now that it is on Tuesdays, you have no excuse! (Unless you are watching "The Real World: Chicago" or "The Shield" instead, but come on, those shows rerun on their networks a million times!) Let's not make ABC have to cancel "The Mole 2: The Next Betrayal" in the middle of the season again!

Ratings System:


Try to catch this show every week...

If a better show is on, tape this one...

If nothing else is on, maybe this will be good...

If this show is on, change the channel immediately!


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