SRP$49.95    1.33:1 DOLBY DIGITAL STEREO PARAMOUNT
 
PARAMOUNT has released “THE JOE SCHMO SHOW.”  Originally developed
and presented on Spike TV, in spite of fitting in the “Reality tv”
category, it’s actually an ingenious take on the whole genre.  A real
contestant, Matt, is made to believe he’s competing with others on a
reality show called “Lap of Luxury,” for a chance to win $100, 000. 
The twist is that all of the other “contestants” are actually actors
and every aspect of the show, including challenges and and contests
are all staged!  The star of the show is the only one not in on the
joke, making it a lot like “THE TRUMAN SHOW”. The only drawback,
which is a “big” one, lies in the fact that it’s hard for the
audience to believe that they’re not being bamboozled like the main
character. It’s hard to believe that everything, including the
premise, isn’t all an elaborate hoax. We never know for sure if the
main contestant is really unaware of what’s happening, or in on it!
This fact isn’t cleared up in the boxed set release either!
Accepting the show’s premise is real, and we’re not being tricked,
it’s a great concept and the show is addictive, with plenty of
surprises thrown at Matt, affecting the viewer as well.
The program consists of eight episodes, played out over three discs.
PARAMOUNT has presented the show in its original 1.33:1 ratio. Colors
are solid, and even though produced for cable, the location appears
exotic and vibrant. Contrast is excellent.
PARAMOUNT has presented a Stereo mix, which offers nothing in the way
of surround effects. However, dialogue and music are well
complimented throughout.
The last disc offers a variety of extras.  There is plenty of
entertaining info relating to the casting and a great audio
commentary for the finale.
A segment titled, “CHOCOLATE SAUCE ON MODELS” examines a challenge
from the 6th episode involving food and nudity. 
There are also some deleted scenes and other extras, all worth
watching.
A great presentation!