Our pop culture quiz goes on the air -- Do you have what it takes to keep up with these entertainment nuts?

By Rick Tetzeli
Updated July 07, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT

When we decided several months ago to pair up with VH1 for an eight-part TV show, The World Series of Pop Culture (it debuts on VH1 on July 10, at 10 p.m. EDT), it seemed like a great idea. Sure, we know you readers love the Pop Quiz back pages and the annual Great American Pop Culture Quiz special issue. And sure, a TV show could be great fun — after all, what’s not to like about trios of pop-culture geeks duking it out over the truly important questions of the day, like these: In the song ”Tubthumping,” what four types of alcohol does a man have on a night out? What Aladdin song was so popular it got its own montage on American Idol? What’s the name of the Mob boss on The Simpsons?

But the real reason it seemed like great fun is that we could show off what smart pop-culture nuts we are. And VH1 had a terrific idea — let’s kick off the marketing for this show by having a team from EW compete with a team from Best Week Ever. We were psyched.

And then we got killed. Crushed. One sad example: Hit List writer Scott Brown didn’t know the source of the tagline ”Never let her out of your sight. Never let your guard down. Never fall in love.” (The Bodyguard. Duh.) And Best Week Ever laughed its way to victory. (We did get a measure of revenge last week, when EW.com beat BWE in a rematch.)

Ah, well. The good news is that the TV show is chock-full of that kind of joy and humiliation, and enough trivia to waste many, many hours. The competitors were drawn from 920 teams across the country who auditioned for 16 spots in the finals, making this a contest featuring the cream of the pop-culture crop. Now it’s your turn to tune in — and see how you match up!

Rick Tetzeli
Managing Editor