Spike TV will offer a new game show called Caraoke Showdown that will feature Craig Robinson and is produced by Howie Mandel’s Alevy Productions.
Perhaps drawing on the popularity of James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke, the program will feature Robinson picking up unsuspecting contestants in a car, then driving around with them as they attempt to complete karaoke challenges for a chance at cash prizes. Along with Corden’s segment from The Late Late Show, the series draws from another popular car-set series: Cash Cab.
The challenges for each contestant might include belting out their favorite tunes, finishing song lyrics, or acting out songs. Adding to the appeal, celebrity guest appearances will also be part of the show: Imagine being asked to sing a Beyoncé track, only to stop on the side of the road and pick up the Queen B herself? “Contestants,” says Spike TV, “never know what’s going to happen next.”
Robinson is best known for his role as Darryl Philbin in The Office, as well as roles in movies like Hot Tub Time Machine and This is the End. He recently appeared in the short-lived TV series Mr. Robinson and as a guest star in Brooklyn Nine-Nine. He also recently won a Sundance Actor Award for his role in the movie Morris From America, which debuted at that festival.
Mandel, who’s no stranger to gameshows himself as the former host of Deal or No Deal, will serve as Executive Producer with Mike Marks of Alevy Productions along with Core Media. The show will also be overseen by Sharon Levy, Executive Vice President Original Series and Chachi Senior, Senior Vice President of Original Programming for Spike.
A specific launch date for the half-hour series has not yet been confirmed, but Spike says we will see the show’s debut half-hour special “later this year.”
Spike TV has already had some success in the singing genre: Lip Sync Battle, which pits two celebrities against one another for epic lip syncing performances, launched in April 2015, and has become Spike’s most-watched original series. That show was also inspired by a late night TV sketch: Jimmy Fallon features celebrity lip sync battles on The Tonight Show.
Clearly, the formula works. As they say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. It will be interesting to see if Caraoke generates the same level of success as Lip Sync Battle has for the network.