It was a pretty boring and slow-paced night as I sat in my home office, doing some PowerPoint documents on my computer. The rain was gently hitting the windows, and from the looks of things, there was a storm brewing in the sky. The one thing that always kept me going at night when I was working hard was having a pot of coffee. Decaff never did a damn thing for me, I needed something to help me focus.
My HD TV was playing in the background, and that provided good background noise. Normally I don't pay attention to what is on when I'm working, but if I hear something that peaks my interest, I will automatically tune in. On TV, there was a random episode of CSI airing, but I had already seen it, so I didn't care. I was tuned in to Channel 9-- CBS. During the episode, a CBS News report came on screen. It was about the TV show that aired on Channel 494, featuring random unknown people getting murdered in "various styles." Its host, a woman named Shilvia was taken into police custody. Turns out the woman was an accessory to a crime.
Shilvia denied and insisted that the televised deaths, even the dismemberment of the drunk 16-year-old girl and then a boy, was intended for horror film audiences. The person in the video who was responsible for the many ghastly homicides was a large bearded man named Tobias. You may remember him dressed as a lumberjack and carrying a chainsaw he used to end the lives of his victims. Shilvia was just the host but she was nevertheless going to be convicted of what she had done. Tobias, more or less, was going to get 20 years to life for homicide. According to police, this show was supposed to be a parody of many snuff films, paying homage to the Guinea Pig series. The participants were never really going to be murdered on film to begin with. It was sort of like a mixture of Scare Tactics and TruTV's Most Shocking rolled into one. Tobias had found out about it, murdered the film crew and its stars, and decided to change the cinematic horror elements into an actual snuff TV series, televising the murders of innocent people on the air.
The Federal Communications Commission had pulled the show off the air and the videos of each "episode" were seized by the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice. After careful examination and going through the footage, there was no evidence of special effects makeup being used, no behind-the-scenes making, no time stamp, bloopers, makeup artists, or film equipment present. There was not even a studio or sound stage. These were snuff films. The real deal.
During Shilvia's stint as a "host," the "studio" that she "worked for" was flooded with phone calls. Not from adoring "fans," but from furious people, mostly friends, family members, and loved ones of the "stars" that "appeared" on her show. The parents of the 16-year-old girl, especially the mother, threatened Shilvia via voice mail with intent of murdering her for what her and Tobias did to her child. To make matters worse, Shilvia never spoke to anyone. It was an automated recording of her voice. Was she really that scared to death or was she just in hiding and couldn't care less? The families and lovers of the victims demanded that Shilvia received the death penalty along with her "friend" Tobias. Since many wanted to take vigilante justice into their own hands and off Shilvia themselves, police refused to let them. Why? If any police department, they are afraid they won't get credit. How stupid is that? If anything, vigilante justice should be legalized. Eventually, the FBI, the U.S. Marshals, and the U.S. Department of Justice negotiated with the Federal Communications Commission, and they came up with this: a reality TV game show where every convicted felon, including murderers that walked free, are the participants. Who battles against them? The ones seeking vigilante justice. With a host, co-host, prizes, and cash prizes, if the convicted are eradicated in the game, the vigilantes win.
There were a few certain rules about the show: petty thieves, heist-men, scammers, con-artists, innocent people who were framed for crimes they did not do, members and leaders of organized crime syndicates, and burglars did not count. Only those who were involved with 1st, 2nd, 3rd degree murder. Those who demanded vigilante justice successfully, would win fabulous prizes and cash. The ones who were involved in the most heinous crimes and didn't want to face a sentence or continue with the game would commit suicide on live television. This would be called "voting themselves off the show," often resulting in the studio audience expressing utter disappointment. There was one exception, however. If any participant was framed for a crime he/she did not commit, they could survive the entire show and were able to clear their names and walk home alive. If you're wondering what the name of the game show is, it was called "Extreme Payback" aka "Sweet Revenge." I was rather unlucky and curious at the same time to watch the premier of the show. Below are the episodes listed. Now, keep in mind, this game show episode listing is not like The Price Is Right where it would say something like "Series 5, Show 1," no. These were individual episodes listed like a regular TV series... Anyway, without further ado, here is the episode listing:
Season 1 Episode 1:
Title: "Pilot" aka "Deleted Scenes of a Snuff Hostess"
Air Date: October 1st, 2009.
The pilot was probably the one everyone wanted to see more than anything. The aforementioned snuff film magnate Shilvia and her friend Tobias were the first ones to appear. Their method of death was pretty simple. Suffer the same fate as the 16-year-old drunk girl did and all the other casualties that were slaughtered on camera. Needless to say, no matter how much pleading and insisting Shilvia did to the game show host and audience, she was still going to suffer. Unless she could survive the three rounds, she would only get off with a 15 year prison sentence for being an accessory to a crime. Tobias on the other hand-- life sentence. The stage was set up just like the set of Shilvia's infamous show on channel 494, along with a parking lot where Tobias murdered and dismembered the previously mentioned 16-year-old girl. The one who was hunting down Tobias was made up to look like Leatherface from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise. He would be waiting for him in the final round to chop to pieces. Family members of the 16-year-old were seated in the audience awaiting the fates of the man responsible for taking her life. High school aged men and women were tracking down Shilvia, taunting her, making her feel what the "stars" of her show felt. The young women were beating Shilvia up senselessly, not enough to kill her, but to make her suffer. She was placed in a chair that the host of a show would generally sit in and ridiculed her to the point of shedding tears and crying. She went from being a mean and nasty bitch who only cared about ratings and having no regard for life, to a sniveling, frightened little girl begging for her life. This is what the studio audience wanted. To hear her beg for her life. Tobias made it into the third round after suffering a brutal and savage beating by many thugs who were unfortunate enough to see the poor 16-year-old die on screen. They may have been total scumbags, but they did have moral standards. Onto the third round, Tobias and Shilvia made it into the parking lot setting. They had a choice. They could either use the car to escape, turn themselves over to the police and face time in jail, or do the rest of the world a favor and die. As time was running out on the clock, the host turned to the studio audience asking: "So how about it, folks? Do Shilvia and Tobias turn themselves over to the police and face time in jail, or should they be eliminated?" The studio audience gave the right response. They didn't want to see Shilvia and Tobias rot in prison for the rest of their lives. They wanted to see them die a violent, painful death. "Oh, I'm sorry. The studio audience and our viewers at home think that prison would be too merciful a fate for you." The host announced. Just then, the man dressed up as Leatherface (let's call him Leatherface) came out of the darkness of the parking lot, chainsaw roaring, and began to chop Shilvia to pieces and stuff her remains in the truck of her escape car. Just then, Tobias died the same way he took the life of the young man on channel 494. Leatherface threw his chainsaw right through Tobias, slicing his lungs, splitting him into. Tobias was dead, so was Shilvia. The 16-year-old girl could finally rest in peace, and her family felt knew full well that her assailant got what he deserved.
Season 1 Episode 2:
Title: "You took her innocence, I'll take your life."
Air Date: October 2st, 2009
A 25-year-old man guilty of raping a school principal's 13-year-old daughter, is the target of the father, who happens to be the principal.
Season 1 Episode 3:
Title: "Wife beater beaten."
Air Date: October 3rd, 2009.
Local man charged with domestic violence against his wife faces off against his spouse's angry boyfriend in a brutal fight to the death.
Season 1 Episode 4:
Title: "SUV. OMG. RIP."
Air Date: October 4th, 2009.
A young man charged with killing a woman and three children while texting and driving is forced to text his way out of all three rounds in hopes of being acquitted. He eventually commits suicide on live TV instead of having to deal with an oncoming SUV that was driven by the father of his deceased wife and children.
Those were some of the episodes I remember. I'm sorry I couldn't list anymore. "Extreme Payback" continued onto late 2013 with a total 46 seasons and many episodes, until a bleeding heart liberal, right-wing Christian group complained that the felons should've been forgiven and sentenced to jail without having to suffer. The creators and production crew of "Extreme Payback" sued the group for millions of dollars. It was rumored that the group who were affiliated with the 700 Club were going to be contestants in the new season premier of 2014... For those who were wanting payback to anyone who hurt you, your friends, family, wife, husband, girlfriend, boyfriend, whatever, applications are still available on the gameshow's website.