Forever looking for new ways to combine entertainment with human suffering, NBC has announced a new reality series for the fall called The Million Second Quiz, a live competition that combines trivia quizzes with the titillating hope you’ll see someone go insane. As its title sort-of suggests, the show will last for a million seconds—or just under 12 straight days—during which contestants will be forced to live in a giant hourglass being built in “the heart of Manhattan,” where the heart is. There they’ll be bombarded with trivia questions and, probably, bags of feces for 24 hours a day, all while viewers play along via the Internet, from the comfort of their own hourglasses.
Anyone who bests the contestants online will then be flown to New York to challenge them live in a nightly primetime broadcast, with the last man standing and not shouting, “Stop asking me inane things and release from this fetid glass prison, you monsters, so I can rescue the last vestiges of my humanity!” winning up to $10 million. “It is a game, a social experiment, and a live interactive event all wrapped into a uniquely sticky entertainment experience,” NBC’s Paul Telegdy said of the show, perhaps a little too descriptively there at the end.