December 2006
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Everything I know about Poker Dome – so far

I’ve got my dates now: Episode 36, filming January 27th, airing on Fox Sports Net on January 28th.

The show is now being shown on FX over here.  That makes four programs on that channel, alongside X-Files, Highlander and Cops.  But obviously those stalwarts of the schedule get top priority and Pokerdome is squeezed on at 2am.  I’ve put it in Sky+ and will try to work out how far behind we are.

The package includes:

Round Trip Air Transportation to Las Vegas
They’ve confirmed that this is for one person only.  Although it’s unlikely Claire can get time off during term time anyway so I’m almost certainly going alone.  Which will be strange.  If they book it for Fri-Sun though it won’t be a direct BMI flight.  At the very least I need to try to get them to make it Thu-Sun and then I can get diamond club miles too, as well as stand a chance of being awake when the tournament starts!  Have to make sure they’ve heard of other airlines than Virgin so I don’t end up having to get to Gatwick!  If I’m only going to be there for a weekend, a 24 hour round trip journey is an absolute upper limit, don’t you agree?

VIP Pick-up from Airport to Hotel
It’s a big black minibus, according to  A limo with attitude.

VIP Check-in at Caesars Palace (2 nights included Friday and Saturday)
Never stayed at Caesars.  Always said its probably where I’d choose if money was no object, and I said that even before they had a card room.  So this is pretty damn cool.

Welcome VIP package in the room (champagne, mansion welcome wear)
Free shirts = always good.  Champagne = don’t care.  How much fun is it going to be to arrive by yourself and sit in your room and drink bubbly anyway?  I’m sure I can find an appreciative wino…

$500.00 Casino Credit
Sounds like this is actually just five black chips, according to  Play em or cash em… well I can’t see there being any tables games lower than $25 minimum at Caesars on a weekend, so I’ll probably cash em.  Or, I could try to do some real life rampaging at $2/$5 NL and see how just far I can spin it up…!

Welcome Dinner and Introduction to the Poker Dome (Friday Night)
Oh God, I have to be sociable?  After an 11 hour flight?  At like 5am UK time? Is this optional? 🙂

VIP Transportation to and from the Poker Dome (Saturday)
Why they’re not putting us in a Downtown hotel I don’t really know.  I’d probably still want a ride from the El Cortez at night, but anywhere else saves them a load of hassle. 

$50 meal credit at hotel
If it’s good at the Cheesecake Factory, you can be sure I’m going to be trying to smuggle a couple of those bad boys back home.

VIP transportation back to airport
BFH.  Super, smashing, great.

The tournament itself is a three round, six-handed, speed poker shootout for a million dollars.  15 players stand between me and $1m – hey, it’s just like Who Wants To Be A Millionaire!  And, if this article is to be believed, you can almost ask the audience too.  There’s also that annoying drone of tension music all the way through.  If I beat five players, I win some money that I can’t lose and get to come back for more.  It’s $25,000 for round one, and a further $50,000 for round two.  Second place gets diddly squat though.  The speed poker element is that you get 15 seconds to make each decision and there are two dealers to keep the cards flowing quickly.

In the rules I’ve been sent (which, incidentally, are all TV rules, and nothing to do with poker) state no logos on clothes, no ipods, and no recourse whatsoever if they decide to make stuff about you to make the show more interesting.

"I hereby release Producer from, and covenant not to sue Producer for, any claim or cause of action, whether known or unknown, for libel, slander, invasion of right of privacy, publicity or personality, or any other claim or cause of action"

I’m also a bit worried why they need to include this:

"I understand that there is a possibility of i) risk of injury to me or others and/or ii) damage to either my property and/or the property of a third party as a direct and/or indirect result from my participation in or connection with certain activity(ies) which may be included within the production of the Program."

It’s not like this is bungee poker or anything…