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Deal or No Deal Courts Craziness in Survival Bid

© by NBCUniversal

In 2002, in the Netherlands, a game show called Miljoenenjacht first hit the airwaves. This box-based chase to a jackpot would go on to spend the better part of two decades broadcasting daily. 

Sadly, as of 2023, only 7 of the 82 countries Miljoenenjacht found a home in still have a place for it in the early evening slot, including its native Netherlands.

Of course, this is the program most of us now know as Deal or No Deal.

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?

By 2016, and the UK cancellation of the show, Deal or No Deal was all but finished. Still, the TV game continued to live on through product licensing. 

The Betfair website has Deal or No Deal: The Perfect Play among its games, along with Deal or No Deal: What’s in your Box? These two titles let visitors play online slot games for real money with the Deal or No Deal’s belligerent banker.

This kind of partnership is much more common than viewers might think. In recent years, casino developers like Playtech have started creating their own game shows with human presenters, as the demand for more authentic casino experiences grows. 

The Spin a Win Live game is streamed from Playtech’s offices and takes the form of a Wheel of Fortune-style game show. 

As for the more traditional shows, Deal or No Deal can usually be found alongside other licensed slots like Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? and Gordon Ramsey’s shouting hour, otherwise known as Hell’s Kitchen. 

Oddly enough, the former show was also shut down in a similar way to Deal or No Deal, this time between 2014 and 2018, while Hell’s Kitchen has enjoyed an unbroken release for the past eighteen years.

Deal or No Deal Island

There’s no denying that licensing has helped keep Deal or No Deal alive, despite its flagging list of broadcast countries – and the UK version of the show is now scheduled for a return to local screens, albeit with new presenter Stephen Mulhern. 

In the US, Deal or No Deal is set to make quite a different kind of revival from December 2023. The good news is that Howie Mandel will return. The bad news is that he’s unlikely to serve as host this time around.

Dubbed Deal or No Deal Island, NBC’s fresh take on the game show is believed to be a mix of two entirely different properties, Deal or No Deal and Survivor, a reality show that also came from abroad, in this case, Sweden.

If that sounds strange, it’s because it is. The media has managed to spin it in quite a believable way, though. Deal or No Deal Island will simply be a riff on Survivor but with 100 of the banker’s boxes littered all over the island. 

Why? It could be argued that NBC is trying to revitalize Survivor with the canceled Deal or No Deal. After 44 seasons, 648 episodes, and 23 years on the screen, the reality show is still going strong but it’s also experienced some of the lowest ratings in its history recently, especially in season 41.