HOWELL – Members of a township family were all ears when they appeared on a recent episode of NBC’s “Ellen’s Game of Games.”
Linda Baker and her daughters Brittany, Alanna, Jasmine and Dominique were all contestants on the game show hosted by comic and talk show star Ellen DeGeneres. During her segment she and other contestants sported large plastic ears.
An NBC representative described the Baker family as all being quite energetic.
Pointing out 24-year old Brittany in particular, the representative said, “Brittany had a great time and was very entertaining playing “Say Whaaat” which was a segment of the show.”
During the show, DeGeneres welcomed contestants to play the classic “You Bet Your Wife,” along with “Oh Ship,” “Danger Word” and “Say Whaaat?”
“My sister (Dominque) was online looking around one night and said “wouldn’t it be fun to apply for “Ellen’s Game of Games!” so we did it and the rest is history,” Baker said. That was April of last year.
Baker said that “the show films in California at the historic Warner Brothers studios” so she coincided the appearance with a special visit to the west coast.
As to being a fan of the show, Baker responded strongly in the affirmative. “Yes! We are absolutely obsessed with Ellen and fans of “Ellen’s Game of Games.”
Baker said, “we did not get to meet her before but we did see her riding around the studio on her bicycle during the early phases of the filming.”
Eventually, however, the family got to meet the game show’s host. “We got to meet her right after the taping and we got to meet “tWitch” as well,” Brittany Baker said.
Baker was referring to the show’s announcer, Stephen “tWitch” Boss. Boss is an all-star judge and fan favorite of the popular Fox dance competition show “So You Think You Can Dance.” He became popular following performances on the fourth season of that show. Falling just short of making the Top 20 in Season 3, he returned the following year and earned the runner-up title.
In 2010, Boss was invited back to the show for a special All-Star Season 7, where he met fellow all-star dancer and his future wife, Allison Holker. His hip-hop performance of “Get Outta Yo Mind,” with classically trained contestant Alex Wong, won the Emmy for Outstanding Choreography.
In the season finale, Ellen DeGeneres stepped in for an injured Wong to recreate the award-winning dance for a surprised audience.
“He said he was rooting for us,” Brittany Baker said.
Being on a game show has its moments of anxiety, excitement and perhaps even a wave of fear and nerves. As to what the Bakers experienced, Brittany said, “we were very excited to see ourselves on television.
“We had all our family and friends gathering for watch parties,” Brittany Baker said. She works in the medical records department of a trauma center and said before the show aired that, “my family is going to die laughing. They will be able to see how nervous we were. I can’t wait to see myself.”
They went for the filming in June of last year and the most fun part of the game was the “Say Whaaat?” segment which Brittany described as “a game very similar to telephone. You see what is on the teleprompter and you have to then tell the next person but they have to read your lips and pass the message on down and the last person runs off and tells Ellen the message.”
“It was fun. We’ve been a fan of Ellen for years. She was great,” Brittany Baker said.