ABC's new TV Show "Splash" made it's debut Tuesday night, as 5 of the 10 competing stars took the first plunge into the water. The premiere episode's "dive-off" resulted in former "Miss Alabama" Katherine Webb beating out Keshia Knight Pulliam (aka 'The Cosby Show's' Rudy Huxtable) and sending the "Cosby" star home. Did the reality show make a big first splash or is the series destined to be a huge flop?
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The first 5 featured stars to debut their diving skills this week were: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Louie Anderson, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Katherine Webb and Rory Bushfield.
Next week the remaining 5 contestants will jump in: Ndamukong Suh, Drake Bell, Chuy Bravo, Nicole Eggert and Kendra Wilkinson.
The one-hour show, hosted by Joey Lawrence & Charissa Thompson opened on the network with a montage of workouts as the diverse cast prepared to compete in front of a live audience and two judges: London Olympic U.S. Gold medalist David Boudia and Australian Olympic athlete and USA Dive Team director Steve Foley.
Leading up to the diving competition, the world's "most decorated" champion, Greg Louganis, is introduced as their coach as he works out the contestants from basics to more complex routines, notes MLive.
Prefaced by their brief celeb diving stories, each of the stars finally got their chance at the top of the diving board, with Keshia leading off. After Pulliam's decent dive, Anderson, Webb, Bushfield, and Abdul-Jabbar followed respectively. The judges scores were then combined with audience scores, resulting in Pulliam and Webb as the bottom two contestants with the lowest scores.
After the unexpected lowest scoring divers were revealed, many viewers were given the first impression that this new show is a popularity contest rather than a skills competition. The scores seemed to be based upon the celebrities' "sob stories" and physical obstacles that they overcame (like Anderson's weight & Jabbar's height) rather than the actual diving itself.
Nevertheless, after a dive-off where Keshia noticibly had the better form, but Webb started from a higher platform, the judges decided to keep the former Miss Alabama around for a little longer (in a probable attempt to keep their ratings up thanks to her perfect bikini bod). After the former Cosby star was eliminated, she tweeted:
"Thank u so much for all the love!! I read EVERY message as soon as I landed. I'm proud of my performance. Let #Splash know how u feel!!"
Viewers of the new reality show did just that, as they took to the internet to reveal their thoughts on the results and the show in general. On a previous Mstars article written earlier in the day, readers commented under it with their mostly negative reactions after watching the premiere:
Karyn: This show was just bad. Bad bad bad. Couldn't even watch the whole hour, and I'm a tv-aholic. Save the embarrassment - cancel it now.
Evie: these divers should be judged on the diving ability, not because they weight 400 pound or 7 ft tall. I guess kindra Wilson will get a 10. former playboy bunny
Stacy: i completly agree with you! Kesha was the best of the five. this program is NOT onthe up and up BOOOO TO THIS PROGRAM!!
Other pessimistic reactions to "Splash" were making waves on Twitter including:
"It has been 1.5 hours since #splash ended and I am still upset I watched the entire hour"
"D-list celebrities sloppily plummeting into a swimming pool? This is a real show? Come on, ABC. #splash"
"#Splash looks like an SNL skit with a disgusting production budget. Stop. Embarrassed for everyone involved! :-/"
There were, however, a handful who enjoyed ABC's diving show premiere, like former Hill's reality star Stephanie Pratt.
While most agree, according to social media, that "Rudy Huxtable" was "robbed" on Tuesday night's first episode of "Splash," ABC can only hope that viewers will give the show a second chance next week when the other half of the stars take their turn on the diving board.
What are your thoughts on "Splash?" Is it a big hit or major flop?