Jon said that there were buried clues in each episode as to whom the mole was. Some are pretty wishy-washy and actually did not pin point the mole. Such as in ep 2 which only told us that Ali was not the mole. Or in eps 3 and 4 which supposedly told us who the final three were and could have applied to Nicole or Mark also being the mole. The single frame (in very small letters) longitude and latitude for San Diego was even hard to spot going frame by frame. Same for ep 7 when in tiny, tiny letters Rojo Corbata was hidden within the thumb print. And finally the audio clue in ep 9 which was an audio clue being played backwards.
We had some better clues such as N2O and wine.
But the producers did try to aim toward the RRF detectives this time. But how many of the clues could the average audience detect? Probably only three: CRG, 4 i's, and the fact that Craig's name was never called during the execution exercises.
These kinds of hidden clues do not attract a large audience. An audience who is watching the show "on air" and is not reviewing every scene on slo-mo videotape. Yes, it appeals to the sleuths who hang out here, but perhaps a few dozen or so do not an audience build. Sorry to say, I think that the producers did themselves a disservice by making the clues so infintesimal and only detected on frame by frame review of the videotape and so they lost audience as the series progressed (as the downward trend of viewership confirms.)
Again, sorry to say, I think we have seen the last of The Mole.
Saying that, this is the GMan rounding third and being throwed out at home.
I think it's tough as far as the clues go. It'd be great to have clues as simple as the four I's and CRG in every single episode but wouldn't that make it a little too easy to find out who the mole was? The reason why some people overlooked clues like that this time was because they seemed too easy. Really hard clues where you have to freeze frame are the norm now because we've had five seasons now and with every improving technology it's so much easier to sniff that sort of stuff out. That's why they have to embed those clues even more.
But I do get where you're coming from. It's hard to find that balance where the clues are easy enough for casual fans to spot and hard enough that fans like us really have to search like crazy.
(The wine was sooooo not a good clue. It was vague as heck and farfetched. Sorry.)
I actually think they did a better job than the first two seasons of making this seasons more fan friendly. Maybe it's just me but I felt so much more connected to each contestant this year than every before. When it got down to Craig, Mark, Nicole, Paul, Clay and Alex I loved them all! I was afraid to watch the next episode because I knew I'd be gutted if ANY of them left. They spent more time in the hotel rooms and having the players just interact with one another. Who doesn't love, "Paul Free?"
In my book they did a phenomenal job of making the show more accessible than it ever has been before. That being said, I agree that I don't think it worked enough. It's a summer show that got little hype and was put in a really late timeslot. Things were working against it from the beginning. I hate to say it but I think we won't be seeing anymore of The Mole and that's a real shame. I love the Amazing Race but I'd personally vote for The Mole for a best reality show Emmy. It doesn't get more cerebral than The Mole.