The Briefcase

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The Briefcase
Genre Reality
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 6 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Dave Broome
Faye Stapleton
Running time 44 minutes
Production company(s) 25-7 Productions
Sony Pictures Television
Release
Original network CBS
Original release May 27 (2015-05-27) – June 26, 2015 (2015-06-26)
External links
Website

The Briefcase is an American reality TV series created by Dave Broome that premiered on CBS on May 27, 2015.[1][2] In each episode, two American families undergoing financial hardship are each given a briefcase containing $101,000, and must decide whether to keep all the money for themselves or give some or all of it to the other family. Over the course of 72 hours, each family learns about the other and makes the decision, without knowing that the other family has been given a briefcase as well, with the same instructions.[3][4][5] On December 9, 2015, the show was cancelled.[6]

Reception of The Briefcase has been largely negative. Ken Tucker, critic-at-large of Yahoo! TV, described it as "cynical and repulsive" for "passing off its exploitation...as uplifting, inspirational TV."[7] Jason Miller of Time.com called it "the worst reality TV show ever".[8] Others compared the show to fictional film and television that pitted the needy against each other, such as the Twilight Zone episode "Button, Button", or The Hunger Games.[3]

Executive producer David Broome responded that critics were misrepresenting the show. "Some of the reports are factually incorrect to the point of irresponsible journalism," he said.[9]

Episodes[edit]

No. Title Original air date U.S. viewers
(millions)
1"Bronsons/Bergins"May 27, 2015 (2015-05-27)6.87[10]
Bronsons gave away $100,000 and Bergins gave away $100,000.
2"Scotts/Musolinos"June 3, 2015 (2015-06-03)5.46[11]
Scotts gave away $20,000 and Musolinos gave away $40,000.
3"Wylie/Bailey-Stewart"June 10, 2015 (2015-06-10)4.88[12]
Wylie gave away $25,000 and Bailey-Stewart gave away $99,600.
4"Matas/Melansons"June 17, 2015 (2015-06-17)5.21[13]
Matas gave away $50,000 and Melansons gave away $100,000.
5"Owens/Aponte-Kassimatis"June 24, 2015 (2015-06-24)4.66[14]
Owens gave away $11,000 with 3 conditions and Aponte-Kassimatis gave away $20,000.
6"Moyas/Vendely-Salgados"June 26, 2015 (2015-06-26)4.00[15]
Moyas gave away $10,000 and Vendely-Salgados gave away $15,000.

Ratings[edit]

No. Title Air date Rating/share
(18–49)
Viewers
(millions)
DVR
(18–49)
DVR viewers
(millions)
Total
(18–49)
Total viewers
(millions)
1 "Bronsons/Bergins" May 27, 2015 (2015-05-27) 1.4/5[10] 6.87[10] 0.1 0.43 1.5 7.30[16]
2 "Scotts/Musolinos" June 3, 2015 (2015-06-03) 0.9/4[11] 5.46[11] 0.2 0.53 1.1 5.99[17]
3 "Wylie/Bailey-Stewart" June 10, 2015 (2015-06-10) 1.0/4[12] 4.88[12] N/A 0.43 N/A 5.31[18]
4 "Matas/Melansons" June 17, 2015 (2015-06-17) 0.9/3[13] 5.21[13] 0.1 0.40 1.0 5.58[19]
5 "Owens/Aponte-Kassimatis" June 24, 2015 (2015-06-24) 0.9/3[14] 4.66[14] 0.2 0.60 1.1 5.26[20]
6 "Moyas/Vendely-Salgados" June 26, 2015 (2015-06-26) 0.7/3[15] 4.00[15] N/A N/A N/A N/A

International version[edit]

An Australian version of the show aired on the Nine Network from June 20 until August 9, 2016. Much like the American program, it was met with negative reviews[21] and low ratings.[22]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Williams, Mary Elizabeth (28 May 2015). "How the altruism porn of "The Briefcase" highlights America's twisted relationship with its poor". Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  2. ^ Wagmeister, Elizabeth (April 28, 2015). "'The Biggest Loser' Creator Brings New Reality Show 'The Briefcase' to CBS". Variety. Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  3. ^ a b Holloway, Kali (30 May 2015). "The Hunger Games: New CBS reality show exploits poor families by making them grovel for $101,000". Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  4. ^ "The Biggest Loser creator pits poor families against one another for briefcase full of cash". news.com.au. 5 May 2015. Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  5. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (28 April 2015). "CBS Sets 'The Briefcase' Reality Series From 'The Biggest Loser' Creator". Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  6. ^ "The Briefcase: CBS Reality Show Cancelled; No Season Two". TV Series Finale. Retrieved 10 December 2015. 
  7. ^ Tucker, Ken (27 May 2015). "'The Briefcase': Cynical, Condescending Help for the Needy". Yahoo!. Retrieved 4 June 2015. 
  8. ^ Miller, Jason (June 10, 2015). "Why The Briefcase Is the Worst Reality TV Show Ever". Time. Retrieved 10 June 2015. 
  9. ^ Starr, Michael (9 June 2015). "'The Briefcase' creator fires back at critics". Retrieved 1 November 2015. 
  10. ^ a b c Kondolojy, Amanda (May 28, 2015). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'MasterChef' & 'The Briefcase' Adjusted Up". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved May 28, 2015. 
  11. ^ a b c Kondolojy, Amanda (June 4, 2015). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'MasterChef' & Stanley Cup Game 1 Adjusted Up". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  12. ^ a b c Bibel, Sara (June 11, 2015). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'The Briefcase' & 'Celebrity Wife Swap' Adjusted Up". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 11, 2015. 
  13. ^ a b c Kondolojy, Amanda (June 18, 2015). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'The Briefcase' Adjusted Up + No Adjustment for 'MasterChef' or 'Bullseye'". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 18, 2015. 
  14. ^ a b c Bibel, Sara (June 25, 2015). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'Big Brother' & 'MasterChef' Adjusted Up; 'Bullseye' Adjusted Down". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 25, 2015. 
  15. ^ a b c Kondolojy, Amanda (June 29, 2015). "Friday Final Ratings: '20/20' Adjusted Up + Final Numbers for FIFA Women's World Cup". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 29, 2015. 
  16. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (June 15, 2015). "'Wayward Pines' Leads Adults 18-49, Viewership & Percentage Gains in Live +7 Ratings for Week 36 Ending June 1". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 15, 2015. 
  17. ^ Bibel, Sara (June 22, 2015). "'Wayward Pines' Leads Adults 18-49, Viewership & Percentage Gains in Live +7 Ratings for Week 37 Ending June 8". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 22, 2015. 
  18. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (June 29, 2015). "'Wayward Pines' Leads Adults 18-49 Absolute Gains & Total Viewership Increases While 'The Whispers' Tops Percentage Gains for the Week Ending June 14". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 29, 2015. 
  19. ^ Bibel, Sara (July 6, 2015). "'MasterChef' & 'America's Got Talent' Lead Adults 18-49 Absolute Gains, 'The Whispers' Tops Percentage Gains & 'America's Got Talent' Biggest Viewership Increase in Live + 7 Broadcast Ratings for the Week Ending June 21". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved July 6, 2015. 
  20. ^ Bibel, Sara (July 13, 2015). "'Wayward Pines' Leads Adults 18-49 Absolute Gains, Percentage Gains & Viewership Increase in Live + 7 Broadcast Ratings for Week Ending June 28". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved July 13, 2015. 
  21. ^ Bond, Nick (21 June 2016). "The Briefcase is exploitative poverty porn at its worst". News.com.au. Retrieved 21 June 2016. 
  22. ^ Vickery, Colin (30 June 2016). "Channel 9 has dropped controversial reality show The Briefcase from its Monday 7.30pm timeslot after two episodes". news.com.au. Retrieved 5 July 2016. 

External links[edit]