The Quarantine Stream: The New 'Supermarket Sweep' Is the Perfect Pandemic Relief

(Welcome to The Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what they’ve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)

The Series: Supermarket Sweep (2020)

Where You Can Stream It: Hulu

The Pitch: Leslie Jones hosts the revival of this classic game show that first started in the 1960s, returned in the mid-1990s, and came back one more time in the early 2000s. Three teams of two ultimate shoppers compete in a variety of brand name trivia and puzzles before racing around a perfectly polished and organized grocery store for the most fast-paced shopping spree you’ve ever seen. The grand prize? A whopping $100,000.

Why It’s Essential Viewing: Look, things are getting bad out there. We just hit over 250,000 deaths because of the coronavirus pandemic, North Dakota has the worst COVID-19 death rate in the entire world, and coronavirus numbers are on the rise all across the United States. It’s only going to get worse as people ignore warnings in favor of gathering for Thanksgiving and Christmas. But if you’re smart, you’ll find a way to distract yourself and stay at home as much as you can, and the new Supermarket Sweep is the perfect way to do that, especially if you’re only having your groceries delivered to your house at this point. Live vicariously through the grocery game show!

Normally, Supermarket Sweep would be the kind of thing you put on while the grandparents are around because they find Elf to be just a little too much, but honestly, this show is such a blast that I will watch it by myself and have a grand ole time testing my knowledge of brand names and groceries like a good little consumer. I don’t want to brag, but this is a game show where I’m finding myself dominating the trivia section, and I might just have to see if I can get on the show as a contestant (which you can do right here). I’m not sure how I’d fare at the physical shopping side of the competition, but I’d be more than happy to try.

Leslie Jones is a fantastic host for the show. Her boisterous enthusiasm gets everyone excited, and she makes the contestants loosen up and have a great time. Her commentary during the fast-paced shopping spree is top notch, and it reminds me of the Nickelodeon Super Toy Run. Is that still a thing? Probably not. I always wanted to do that too. But I digress.

Supermarket Sweep is the kind of show where you might find yourself shouting at the contestants as they dawdle in the aisles when they should be shoveling meats into their carts. Stop wasting your time with the appliances! They’re too big and they’re not as expensive as you think! Why aren’t you going for the over-the-counter medications, protein shakes or beauty products?! They’re small and expensive! These are the things I sometimes shout out loud while watching the show, and I’m not ashamed to say it.

Now is the time for junk food television, and if you’ve run out of episodes of the 1990s version of Supermarket Sweep (which our own Jacob Hall got caught up in earlier this year), then shift over to Hulu and keep up with this new version of the show. If you want to start with a bang, I’d like to recommend kicking it off with the fourth episode, which features two hilarious drag queens as contestants, and not only are they lively, but they’re damn good at the competition too. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed in this show, though you may end up being disappointed in yourself.

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