The news of a crazy new Russian Survivor-type reality show has been revived across social media of late. The show, Game2: Winter, is likened to The Hunger Games in that contestants will be allowed to commit such crimes as rape and murder. So, is this really a new game show?
There is a website for Game2: Winter as well as a Facebook group that seems to back up the concept of this new Russian series. It is expected to air live sometime in July according to the article by the Siberian Times that seems to be the source of the latest information on this Russian reality show. Ever since news broke late last year, usually reliable sources and media outlets as varied as the New York Post, the Guardian and Deadline have been reporting on Game2: Winter, another indication it is a real TV show.
So, what do we know about Game2: Winter and will it really allow murder like in the fictional book, The Hunger Games?
According to the Siberian Times, “July will see 30 participants, 15 of them women, ditched on a large island in the Ob River, the seventh longest in the world, chasing a 100 million rouble ($1.7 million) prize on a nine month survival mission in winter temperatures as low as minus 50C.”
To be eligible to qualify for this game, contestants must be over the age of 18 and sign a waiver indemnifying them from acts such as rape and murder. Candidates either pay a $165,000 (approximate) registration fee or were selected by popular vote via an online voting session. So far, candidates are as varied as an ex-military man from South Korea, a student from Sweden and a “professional blonde” from the Russian Arctic. It has also been reported that an American has expressed interest in joining the reality show.
The contestants for Game2: Winter will be placed in an area of the Siberian wilderness that will contain 2,000 cameras and the show will be aired 24/7. So far, it has been reported that five countries outside Russia have expressed an interest in airing rights to Game2: Winter.
Contestants will not have access to guns but will be allowed other weapons such as knives. They will set out with one set of clothing that will not be replaced if lost.
These contestants will then be required to stay alive until April 1, 2018 – using any means possible. A rule stated that contestants could use any means to survive and an advert for the show stated the following.
“Each contestant gives consent that they could be maimed, even killed. 2000 cameras, 900 hectares and 30 lives. Everything is allowed. Fighting, alcohol, murder, rape, smoking, anything.”
However, since the original press release in December, apparently this rule has been removed and a more rigorous adherence to the laws of the Russian Federation have been implemented. According to the Guardian, while contestants “sign a waiver acknowledging that they might be raped or killed,” the police will step in if crimes are committed during the show. However, considering the remoteness of the location in Game2: Winter, it is unlikely they will be able to intervene or prevent crimes as they are occurring and will only be able to deal with the end result.
According to Snopes, these rules have always been in place for Game2: Winter, however, reporting, in some cases, initially did not specify game contestants would still have to abide by the “laws of the Russian Federation.” The initial regulations (that are still in place) in regard to this rule are stated below.
“Contestants sign waiver acknowledging they may not survive nine-month Siberian wilderness challenge, and if crimes are committed, [contestants] will be arrested.”
“Contestants will each sign a waiver acknowledging that they might be raped or killed but the rules also state that police are free to arrest anyone who commits a crime on the show. You must understand that the police will come and take you away. We are on the territory of Russia, and obey the laws of the Russian Federation.”
So, while this real-life Russian variant on The Hunger Games is actually true, some of the rules have been reported incorrectly, leading to the assumption that the show allowed, or even encouraged, acts such as rape and murder. Yes, this show is still concerning because of its remoteness and the possibility crimes could be committed, however, the show does not, officially, condone this behavior.
Media outlets have since started to make these concessions more clear in their articles about Game2: Winter.
Will you be watching Game2: Winter when it airs in July? Let us know by commenting below.
[Featured Image by Lionsgate Films]