* The putter they use now is pretty nifty. She caught the ball on the heel, and it still rolled fairly true. I don't think it's a big reason why they don't play it. Just the virtue of not being completely producer controlled hurts it, as well as the long running time. The show got the new clubs and bag on February 9, 2009. Since then it's been won 13 out of 19 times. That's amazing for a car game nowadays.
*That $4000+ bed came out of nowhere. That reminded me of the bad-old-days, when they used to have $5000 IUFBs purely for the "ooooohs". And...you know what...Alisa in the previous segment won a $1310 kayak, a $2098 computer with software and $690 worth of shoes for a total of...$4098. Hunh. That's weird.
*I would not give Patrick any credit for knowing Cover Up strategy. He was staring long and hard at the audience the entire time. He was led to believe that the car was in the high 20s, and that's what he went with. I think I heard him say under his breath, "That's a cheap car!"
*I completely disagree with you on Plinko's SPs. They were all pretty simple. If the choice for the last number was 0, 5 or 9, it's been right. If not, it's not. This was just another case of a contestant letting the audience do their thinking for them.
How many times has Hole in One (Or Two) been played this season? It seems to have been played 6 times so far this season, and normally it gets played that many times in a single season, and we're not even close to the season finale yet. Makes me wonder if Spelling Bee will get more playings this season than normal? If the Bee only gets 6 playings this season, I can expect such game to get one more playing before we close the books on Season 40, and I think it will occur in May.
And it is kind of surprising that Hole In One (Or Two) was won a lot more often these days. It was only lost 31% of all the playings since February 2009, if my math is correct, and only lost 2 out of 6 times last season (second-highest win percentage for any car game played in Season 39, the highest win-percentage being - oddly enough - 3 Strikes).