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Brain Games

Brain Games

  • Premiered: 
    January 20, 2020
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: Nat Geo
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Reality
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
    Updated version of Brain Games 
  • Subject Matter:
  • Tags: celebrity, science

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Plot Synopsis

In this re-imagined version of BRAIN GAMES, host and executive producer Keegan-Michael Key -- along with world-famous mentalist Lior Suchard and field correspondent and science communicator Cara Santa Maria -- guides celebrities through fun and exciting experiments, illusions and demonstrations that includes a mixture of in-studio and in-the-field game components; physical and mental games; and the introduction of "The Gauntlet," a series of simple, yet challenging, brain games, faced by each celebrity guest. Filmed in front of a studio audience, the new BRAIN GAMES merges brain power with star power as celebrities perform challenges that reveal the science behind what makes us tick. The in-studio audience, and the viewers at home, play along as Key and master mentalist Suchard lead these A-listers through mind-bending neuroscience. Also in each episode, Santa Maria takes cerebral challenges on the road across the United States. In addition to Key and the celebrity guests, many of the fun and shocking moments this season are provided by Suchard, whom many consider the best mentalist in the world. Performing amazing mental feats, Suchard takes guests on an incredible journey through the wonders of the human brain. Suchard's act builds on drama and astonishment and includes lots of humor and full audience participation. Episodes include:

"Male Brain vs. Female Brain" (Monday, January 20, 2020 at 8pm): Actors and real-life spouses Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard put their minds to the test in a battle of the sexes -- finding out how men's and women's brains problem solve in contrasting ways.

"Ted Danson: Fact or Fiction?" (Monday, January 20, 2020 at 9pm): Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning actor Ted Danson, with the help of the Blue Man Group, investigate the science behind fake news.

"Drew Brees: Performance" (Monday, January 27, 2020 at 9pm): New Orleans Saints quarterback and Super Bowl champion Drew Brees tests the brain science behind athletic performance.

"Kids vs. Adults" (Monday, February 3, 2020 at 9pm): Co-stars on BLACK-ISH, Anthony Anderson and Marsai Martin go head-to-head to see how kids' and grown-ups' brains work differently.

"Jack Black: Music" (Monday, February 10, 2020 at 9pm): Actor-musician Jack Black and his Tenacious D bandmate Kyle Gass learn how music affects the brain.

"Mark Cuban: Power & Money" (Monday, February 17, 2020 at 9pm): Keegan-Michael Key welcomes billionaire CEO and star of SHARK TANK Mark Cuban to explore how business-savvy, powerful brains might be different from others, and how power can manipulate the way we think. Cuban and Key undergo a series of challenges involving split-second decision-making via rapid hiring and firing, memory mastery and a ruthless game of "Simon Says." Plus, actor Colin Hanks demonstrates the halo effect by disguising his identity to become a pretentious artist. Mentalist Lior Suchard manipulates the audience to move pendulums with their minds, and Cuban tests his mettle in the Gauntlet's mental obstacle course.

"Rebel Wilson: Love and Attraction" (Monday, February 24, 2020 at 9pm): Actress Rebel Wilson joins Keegan-Michael Key to explore the power of the subconscious when it comes to falling in love.

"Tiffany Haddish: Movie Magic" (Monday, March 2, 2020 at 9pm): Actress Tiffany Haddish and director Jordan Peele join Keegan-Michael Key to play games that show how Hollywood pros manipulate our brains to make us feel genuine emotion while watching movies.

In addition to the featured guests in each episode, other celebrities make cameo appearances: Tim Allen, Colin Hanks, Tom Hanks, Kevin Hart, Gillian Jacobs, Thomas Middleditch, Jordan Peele, Ben Schwartz and Marcus Scribner.

On Friday, January 17 -- just before the series premiered -- National Geographic renewed the re-booted series for a second season.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Magical Elves
  • With Alfred Street Industries