Child Genius: Who Will Watch This Show With Me?

Child Genius Adrian

Look, as a teacher I love this show. As a reality TV lover of shows where kids may have gigantic meltdowns, I love this show. As someone who hates most parents of child geniuses, I love this show.  It’s late, but I just have to watch the premiere.  It’s on Lifetime on Thursday nights. Check it out.

These kids are in the top half a percentile on some IQ tests.  They are used to being the smartest kid in their area and then they are thrust in with other kids just as smart.  It reminds me of going to college. I went to private school from first to fifth grade. I was never really academically challenged until my high school junior year. I skipped my high school senior year, not exactly by choice, the counselor called me in and I expected the usual lecture on skipping class and not doing my best. But she basically said she could not take another  year  of me and shipped me off to Kennesaw  State  for joint enrollment.  Basically, if I failed my college classes I would not graduate from high school. So of course, I continued my truancy, this time with boys and booze and just managed to squeak by. Eventually, I made it to UGA and EVERYONE there was way smarter than me. It was a wake up call. For about five minutes. Then I just did what I had to do to stay enrolled. Because, Fraternity Row!  And I am far from a genius. It was just that college eliminated all the morons that made me feel smart. Anyway. Oversharing. These kids really freak out when placed in a situation where they are not the smartest kid in the room anymore. It’s fun.

Child genius Adrian 2

Drake, 10 IQ 155.  Um okay maybe I am a genius. 155 may not cut it in this competition. Anyway, Drake is a tennis star. His mother is annoying as fuck They live in Silicone Valley. I hope he goes home first. Drake can’t add 2 and 3 digit numbers in his head. I think he has to be first out.

Jenna, 11 IQ  162  from Texas. I love that she hates this. I love that her mother makes her punch the walls. Jenna doesn’t give a shit about any of this. Did I mention I love her?

Jaden,  11 IQ  (?) and crazy parents. Jaden has a fermented food fetish.

Chancellor, 10 IQ (?) He’s adorable and uses his mind for evil. :) Phone hacking. Homeschooled by his mother. He doesn’t give a crap about winning this either. Heh.

Arnav, 9  IQ  144  Super into it. Wants to win. Gets anxious. Great at mental math.

Adrian  10 IQ (?)   Adorable classic nerd. Homeboy from Peachtree City. Musical savant. Played Carnegie Hall, thrice. I love him. Very confident yet adorable. He is jointly enrolled as a senior in high school and a college freshman. Wants to go to Harvard but is worried about tuition and really wants to win this show. Single mother from some other country they have sort of an inappropriate relationship, the sort where a single mother treats her son like a partner. I should point out that Peachtree City is not a cheap place to live and he has a very expensive piano in the house. So the whole poor single mother thing is not working for me. He has a very rich daddy somewhere.

Claire, 10 IQ (?)  Pretty good at mental math

Selah 9, 143  The youngest and perhaps the lowest IQ but quite confident.

Round One Math

Arnav probably can’t be beat in math comps. 9/10 and I am not sure they got to question 10.

Adrian, my home boy missed 12 X15  in the math challenge WITH PEN AND PAPER! He only got 5 out of 10 correct. Which I found odd.

Selah tanked with only two questions correct. :(

Jaden got 7/10  ugh. More of that mother and her food fetish.

Jenna got 3/10  Let’s hop she rocks the memory.

Drake  got 2/10 I blame his mother. I hope Selah beats him in memory. His mother basically trashed talked him to the poor parent sitting next to him bitching about how she hires tutors and he still does things his own way.


The MENSA lady or whoever she is, is disappointed in the kids first outing. She blames nerves.

Drake is tied for last place (YAY!) and having a meltdown (YAY!)  I need him to go home so Selah can stay. Selah’s parents are nicer.

Homeboy Adrian has his own commercial for the show. He will be around for awhile.

Round Two Memory

The kids have to memorize the order of a deck of 52 cards. This is somewhat unfair if there are kids with photographic memories. We shall see. They have one hour, parent free to memorize their deck. In this round, they cannot see how the competition is doing.

Adrian, my homeboy is first. He has a great memory technique for the suits. He gets 34 cards. YES!

Sam is adorable. We don’t know anything about him but he feels convinced he only has 51 cards in his deck. He is freaking out and no parents can be with him. A rep counts the deck. He has 52.  He goes back to study.

child genius 3

Vivek is a super cute kid He has a panic attack and his father is marvelous with him. He only gets 18 but I think he will be fine. I love his dad.

Oh shit Selah only got 7!  :(

Chance got FIFTY TWO CORRECT after some struggles!  Way to go my little phone hacker! His mother tried to tell him to go study the deck again when he finished early and he refused saying it would just confuse him. She let him. He is moving to the front of my deck!

Drake is up. He needs at least 8 cards. He gets 16 but was VERY nervous.  His mother unloads on a new chick how much she pays for him to learn shit and how talented he is and how she is worried about his nervousness. He has played pro tennis! Or whatever she said to excuse his mediocre round. Drake refuses to share his score with the other kids. He just says ” I did awesome.”

Claire  got 40.

Jaden (fermented food fetish, Side note I have two pots of Wildbrine and two jars of Kim Chi in my fridge so keep your cards and emails. got 31.

Arnav only got 24 which after his human math calculator round was surprising.

OH NOE!!!!! My girl Jenna is having a meltdown. Her mother pushes her way too much. They call her parents back because she will not go out. They TELL HER that Selah only got seven cards. That should disqualify her right there. She says she can’t even do that. I hate her mother. The final girl is pulled from the room. because she is being unfairly stressed. Jenna’s stupid mother is telling her the answers. Apparently that is okay because there are competition people in there with them.

The final girl, Iris, who we have not really met yet gets 11.

Jenna forfeits. :(

The producers ask if she would like to go collect her certificate. Her mother is a huge cunt saying basically she does not want people to know her daughter melted under the pressure. Clearly this was not Jenna’s idea in the first fucing place and her mother sucks.  So when this airs, I am sure Jenna will get some more fresh hell. This reminds me of all the times I just wanted to let the damn kids live with me. I nearly adopted two AND  I DON’T EVEN WANT CHILDREN but damn some parents suck ass.

Total Scores

Top Three: Arnav and Claire with 28 points tied for second.  Chance won.

Parents said  mean things about Jenna not coming out. Especially Drake’s mom.


Filed under Child Genius, News

47 responses to “Child Genius: Who Will Watch This Show With Me?

  1. Looks a little painful, but I’ll try it. Thanks for the heads up, TT.

  2. Deb in SF

    I’m in on this one, although I admit to not paying that close attention tonight. Some of those parents…yikes!

  3. Erica

    Oh… you being a teacher and me being a former teacher, I MIGHT try watching it again since I would have an outlet. I watched one episode of this in the past (or a similar show) and all it did was give me anxiety because I couldn’t throat punch some of the parents.

  4. Karol

    I’m with you on this show TT. I watched it last season and loved it and from the looks of the kids and parents this season, it will be just as good, if not better. I think they do a great job of producing the series and by the end of last season I felt like I really knew the kids and the parents.

  5. Will and Jada put their son in a reality show??? I kid, I kid I couldn’t help myself! It’s sounds interesting but the more I read the more it felt like I was reading a dance mom recap! I don’t watch that show, your recaps are enough thanks! I just downloaded it from on demand so I’ll watch later! Thanks!

  6. lawstangel

    Love this show, was actually looking forward to it. What a nightmare some of those parents are!
    There is a school here in Los Angeles called “The Mirinmar School” it is for “highly gifted” children, in order to enroll they must have a minimum IQ of 138. Interestingly enough, both of Russell Simmons daughters are super smart and they both. go there. One cannot buy their way in, they have to submit IQ scores prior to applying for admission.I thought maybe one of these kids may have been enrolled there, but it does not appear so. My hometown girl in the competition is the happy little Asian girl from Arcadia which I think is Claire. I worked at a company on the 90’s that employed a child genius, he was fascinating, smarter than everyone in the company, but prone to temper tantrums. He was a computer programmer that graduated from UCLA when he was 15 !
    I look forward to seeing the competition play out.

  7. WonkyTonk

    Ok, I set the dvr to record this one, but it’s got to pay off fast because I’ve got way too much to watch as it is now.

  8. JoJoFLL

    Went to high school with Leland Melvin and he’s a sweetie. He’s got the coolest official NASA photo, it’s with his two dogs!

    • He’s a great host! His voice is so kind & encouraging to the kids. I love that they have the snarky lady giving us the play by play so he can just be the kids mentor. And those parents… Oy.

  9. I watched this show last season. Loved it even though it made me feel like a dumb dumb. I’m in!

  10. gapeachinsc

    I’ll give it a shot but the first time I cry, I’m out!!

  11. sandra

    I was unable to watch it last night, but it is on Saturday @11am, and I plan to watch it. I watched it last season and it’s a very good show.

  12. Sam

    I’m going to watch. I love tantrums and asshole parents on reality TV. I desperately miss Toddlers and Tiaras. That used to give me my fix of both of those things, except the IQs were mostly below average (speaking of the parents, not the kids :)

  13. swizzle

    Thanks for the heads up. Watched this last season and enjoyed it, mostly for the insane parents and a few charming children. I’d love to see a follow-up on this kids in a decade. It seems to me that so many of these child geniuses flame out early, especially when they are pushed by their parents.

  14. I’m IN! FYI tennis moms are even more annoying then child genius moms.

  15. Mzjulesaz

    I’ll give it a try, sound interesting.

  16. sherry

    I saw the commercials last night while watching Project Runway Jr. I taped it! I think this will be fun!

  17. TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsYoya

    I didn’t think I was in, but after readiing your recap I am SO in!

    I hope you’re watching “The Making of a Murderer” on Netflix. It’s cured my withdrawal from “The Jinx”.

  18. I’m so glad you are recapping this show. I watched three episodes last season and simply cannot watch. I ended up homeschooling my “genius” kid and would absolutely NEVER subject him to this. He knows he’s smart, but will never know anything about his IQ. Right now he thinks the three days he spent hanging out playing games with that nice doctor was only to help us pick a school. Life is hard enough for kids. Who needs the pressure? I’m coming back to read your recaps every week. I’m tempted to watch this first episode though, just so I can Amen you for judging the parents.

  19. Cat

    I would and wouldn’t like to watch this. I used to be one of these kids. Just reading the recap gave me flashbacks.

  20. Dee

    I will watch it. Sounds good to me!

  21. Cheychey

    Watched last year and watching again. Loved it. I was hoping the silicone valley family went home also. Mom is way annoying. I also loved the boy who was getting his mom in trouble with Verizon for hacking the phone too funny.

  22. loriflack

    I may watch it, but mostly to check out the loser parents…

  23. Nancy (the other one)

    I watched every episode last season and saw the first episode last night. I love Adrian already! I wonder how these parents feel when they see themselves on the show. I want to research Drake’s mom. I am SO in!

  24. realityjunkie

    Drake is a handsome kid and I worry about him with the mom he has. He seems like he’s under a lot of pressure and will rebel eventually. I was so annoyed by Jenna’s mom. What an ass! She was cheating and I was wondering when the staff member was going to interject but she forfeited so I guess it doesn’t matter. Not only did she cheat but then she feigned support for her daughter’s decision. How can you say it’s okay in one breath and then continue to force her in another? I’m looking at her dad like “Say something you doormat!!”

  25. uh oh! New addiction. This is crazy good!

  26. hannahkingrose

    I watched the first episode and I think I’m in. My question is since some of you have seen the show from last season, are most of the parents jerks. There are seriously several I already would like to throat punch and I’m a nonviolent person. Their kids are geniuses obviously but does that automatically make the parents lose all common sense because of it? The kids may have very high IQs but they are still kids and sometimes don’t want to perform like circus animals. Seems some of the parents are more worried about how they will look if the child doesn’t do well than how the kid looks and feels.

    • tamaratattles

      Hannah, last season the girl who was a co winner (I think) in the most recent spelling bee was on. Her father really pushed her, but they had a great relationship. I still think of him when I am drinking water. He was big on her drinking water and would tell her to drink it often. She would smile sweetly and drink the water. It was a cute thing between them.

      There were other kind parents who didn’t push them at all or put all the world’s pressure on them (like Adrian this season with “the single mom” who clearly has plenty of money coming from somewhere) .

      I’m sure we will see nicer parents this season as well, but the producers know we watch for the horrific parenting like that tennis mom. UGH.

      Have we seen Claire’s parents yet? She seems pretty confident and well adjusted.

  27. I’m in. I love Chancellor, one of those kids who skips everywhere he goes, and Claire, who’s just plain cute. I think I saw Claire’s mom give her a little smack her in a quick preview clip. Drake looks exactly like his awful mom. I felt terrible for poor Jenna. Retreating to beneath a table in tears could not have been a more clear signal to everyone – “Get me out of here! Now!” I hope her pushy mom was kind to her when the cameras were gone.

    • Watching Jenna hide under the table made me want to strangle her mother. When she attempted to “reassure” Jenna that she still loved her, and that the competition wasn’t important, I almost forgave her. Then she immediately started cajoling her to go back out there again. And really, using the delightful Selah’s low score as leverage to get Jenna back into the game? Evil mom. That dad needs to grow a spine. Wow. I love this show!

  28. Nicole S

    I’m thrilled you will recap this show. One of my guilty pleasures last season, so I’m glad to see it come back! So far, I like Selah because of her winning spirit and spunk. Some comments are mean about her weight and I hate that. She’s totally cute to me. Chancellor is my absolute favorite! He’s nonchalant and happy. His fun father seems to balance out mom’s tiger-mom-ness. They seem the most normal so far. I’m a fan of the show.

    • Spunk is a great descriptor for Selah. She is adorable. And so is Adrian. And Chance! Oh, and Iris- the way she tried to comfort poor Jenna- so sweet. And Claire! And Viveck! His dad seemed genuinely pleased and delighted with his son, regardless of his performance.

      • Nicole S

        Yes! How sweet was little Iris during Jenna’s melt down. And she was risking her own performance because she had not competed yet. I’m sure it was distracting for Iris but she stuck with her friend :)

  29. Rose

    I’ll have to check it out. My new love and obsession is Born This Way on A&E.

    • I just looked up Born this Way. Is it a tearjerker? Just reading about it brought me tears to my eyes–in a good way. Thanks for the heads up.

      • Rose

        There are moments it makes me cry, yes. I just love watching these 7 young adults explore things like conflict, being different, achieving dreams, getting a job, living on their own, love, etc. They all have Down’s Syndrome and are freaking awesome! Can’t say enough fantastic things about this inspirational series from the kids to their parents. A+++++ and it was just picked up for a second season. You can catch it on demand.

      • You sold me. I’ll watch. xo

    • Nicole S

      Its brave and humane of Lifetime to air this show. I’m going to watch it. Thanks for the reminder.

  30. While we do have to remember that this is reality TV and all children and parents are going to be “edited” to fit the narrative of the show, I think there were enough truly horrendous moments from Blake and Jenna’s terrible mothers that at least a fraction of their nastiness exists in real life.

    The math round, just as in season 1, was disappointing. Some kids who are taking college level math or who aced their ACTs could not do simple addition and subtraction, even in the pen and paper section. I understand the idea of nerves, but it’s still a little shocking that these kids who are doing very advanced math can’t easily add, subtract and divide. Do you think it’s possible that some of these kids’ accomplishments are highly exaggerated for the cameras?

    Jenna — her parents noted that her IQ test was given when she was very young. I wonder if she has been tested since then? IQ scores of very young children are often not reliable, and can go down several points if the child is tested at a later time. Jenna herself noted that people always expect things of her that she isn’t actually capable of. Perhaps she isn’t really so “gifted,” and is just a regular kid who is living a life of hell as she is pushed by her parents and others to achieve things that a misleading score seems to indicate she can? If that is the case, what a terrible existence. Whatever the case, she obviously is not emotionally ready for competition such as this, and she should be left alone.

  31. KidsRkids

    Is anyone else disgusted that Blakes mom plugged her book on Child Genius? She is the worst of the worse. Her excessive bragging and excuses she makes for her sons poor performance also grates my nerves.

    • Yes, I’m also disgusted. She is like a caricature of a stage/tennis/dance mom. I just watch and wonder if she is for real. Then the excuse making she does while the competition is going on reminds me of other parents I know. Makes me sad.

  32. Samantha

    Drake’s mom is the worst example of a superficial, exploitative shell of a human being trying to masquerade as a “mother” that I have ever seen. I hope when this show airs, she realizes how idiotic she sounded by bringing up Drake’s tennis ability and his private schooling at every chance she had. The worst part of this is when Drake’s friends’ parents (and his friends) see him on national TV saying that his family is “better than theirs”, he will instantly become a social paraiah! I predict years and years of mommy issues and counseling for that boy and it’s the “mother’s” fault for exploiting his gifts, so she could feel better about herself and add another meaningless trophy to her, er, I mean, his, trophy shelf. Shame on her. Plus, her tooth to gum ratio when she smiles is way off! It freaks me out!

  33. Did you see Drake’s mom’s lips mouthing the words when he was talking about getting help from God to continue on in the competition. She is some piece of work.

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