A&E’s Caesars 24/7, GSNs American Dream Derby both debut tonight.
A&E follows the Discovery Channel and FOX’s casino reality show leads tonight when it debuts Caesars 24/7 at 10 p.m. ET. The new series promises a “an insiders’ look into the famous Las Vegas resort, Caesars Palace.” In addition to casino employees, we’ll also see “a revolving cast of tourists and regulars, naive first-time gamblers, imperious high-rollers, reckless newlyweds, and many more of the 60,000 winners and losers who pass through Caesars Palace each day.”
It’s those people that drag the show down, according to the Tribune-Review’s Laura Urbani, who writes, “Most of the casino’s patrons are loud, obnoxious and desperate. As they pout and pose for the camera, the question arises if any of their responses are genuine.”
An hour earlier, the Game Show Network–excuse me, GSN–debuts the first horse racing reality show, American Dream Derby. Over eight episodes, 12 “players will be put to the ultimate equestrian challenge including stable chores, track trials and the fine art of handicapping.” They “are competing for a $250,000 cash prize plus a stable of thoroughbred horses,” and the series will finish with a live race at the Santa Anita Park.
The New York Times likes the series’ cast, saying that “[t]he likability of the 12 contestants goes a long way toward making ‘American Dream Derby’ less idiotic than many examples of the reality genre.” However, “the show suddenly turns into ‘Fear Factor'” when contestants “are required to dig through the horse feces with their bare hands, looking for keys that will make wheelbarrows available to them.” The Sun-Sentinel adds, “The problem is the producers tried to twist racing into a standard reality competition format instead of creating a new concept geared to the unique aspects of the sport.”