We’ve started watching Belgian Mole and it is so, so good.

Obviously we’re big fans of Wie is De Mol? at the Bar, the Dutch version of The Mole, we have our own little commentary board set up for it every year. But last year Belgium, where the format originated, bought the show back by popular demand and its timing of starting its run halfway through the Dutch series is really unfortunate because it’s frequently incredible, and I can only really concentrate on one Mole series at a time. And I’ve just started watching the most recent series.

We watched the first series unsubtitled last year, and despite not knowing Flemish particularly well the production quality shined through. This is a surprisingly different beast to the Dutch show – whereas in the Netherlands the show’s a bit more of a travelogue, putting a high value on shots of the surrounds and the group dynamic and film soundtracking, apart from one or two set pieces the challenges are not usually all that dynamic, many of them quite simple tasks that cost £10 + a large hill. It’s also produced in the US “tell then show” reality style, albeit better than that because the confessionals feel rather more raw and honest, without the dramatic irony US producers ladle on so nothing really feels like a shock any more.

The Belgian reboot looks and feels like it’s got some proper backing, it really feels like old-skool De Mole but with thoughtful use of modern production and graphics and great challenges and twists. 2017 episode two has an excellent modern version of the classic Hitchcock Hotel task (people in different rooms have to solve puzzles to help people in other rooms in order to escape within a time limit) with a safari twist – and some hilarious Mole-esque gags, followed by a game with a gospel choir which I thought would be really boring but was really, really tense, like a musical version of that bit in Lord of the Rings where the Hobbits are hiding from those screechy people. Great use of singling out the contestants’ voices when the blindfolded judges were near. And it does its diaries in the old style – strictly each evening. It all feels beautifully produced.

If you like The Mole but can’t get on with the Dutch show I heartily recommend giving the Belgian version a try, someone brilliant has given both series English subs, but unfortunately it’s on rubbish streaming site Dailymotion so I find I have to turn them off and on at the beginning of each video before they show up. I’m only a couple of episodes into 2017 but I want to mainline it all.

Show Discussion: !mpossible Series 2

Weekdays, 2:15pm,
BBC1

The speedy return of the afternoon quiz with Rick Edwards where a group of thirty 24 contestants must try and answer multiple choice questions but one of the choices is impossible (i.e. they satisfy none of the conditions in the question) and if they pick that they’re eliminated for the rest of the day’s show. The daily winner gets a chance to win the £10,000 contained within the exclamation mark.

Enjoyed the first series, especially the hilariously brutal episodes when there were about two people left to contest round three, and we enjoyed the quickfire head-to-head-to-head where you had to quickly figure out whether a question was nonsense or not. This is a longer run of thirty episodes so I’m intrigued to see if they’ve made any changes – last time you stayed on the show until you saw the final question twice, with double the length of the run is there a limit to how many episodes you can be in the gallery for? Do the coins falling out look a bit more spectacular this time round? I’m sure we’ll find out in due course.

Schlag den Star Watchalong 20/5/2017 #bbsds

eltonsdsSaturday,
7:15pm UK/8:15pm Germany,

Pro Sieben or naughty internet streaming

Tweet us! #bbsds

That’s right star schlaggers we’re back for another evening of celebrity challenges and commentary fun and frolics.

Join me and our regular commentators we watch two German celebrities battle it out over fifteen games both spectacular and mundane for Elton’s €100,000 case – LIVE.

During the boring bits we’ll have our own games and gossip, and we’ll try and remember to read out your tweets on the #bbsds hashtag.

But who are our two gladiators battling it out on Saturday night? Why it’s only bloody Eurovision star Lena Meyer-Landrut (who did Satellite) against host and model Lena Gercke. Amy Macdonald and Mando Diao are tonight’s musical turns. Do join us!

Our commentary stream – live from 7:15 to around midnight
This stream is commentary only. You will need to have a naughty stream running at the same time for the visuals. We are likely to be about 15-20 seconds behind the visual stream (and about a full minute behind if you’re watching an actual satellite feed), sorry.

To watch it would be useful to download Opera and sign up for ProSieben’s catch-up service – it’s pretty simple to work out, don’t click the box if you don’t want e-mail messages. You will need to put in a proper e-mail because it will send you a confirmation. Go into your settings (Cog top right of Speed Dial screen, then bottom) – go to Privacy settings, click on Enable VPN. Go to Pro7 stream, click on blue VPN symbol in address bar, turn it on for Germany. Hassle but should work!

Back up – best in Opera or Firefox. Best with ad-block.

@bothersbar@danielpeake@davidjbodycombe @sensei256, @ogbajoj

Tschüß!

Snoop Dogg

With the news that Snoop Dogg is being lined up to front a new version of The Joker’s Wild in the US what seems like quite an outre choice ignores the fact that Snoop’s a regular on the celebrity gameshow circuit these days and it might end up OK. Here he is on The Price Is Right, look:

 

It’s the reboot of Monkhouse Memory Masters with Dr Dre I’m most looking forward to.

It’s Lena vs Lena on Schlag den Star on Saturday

That’s right Lena Gercke takes on Eurovision’s Lena Meyer-Landrut across 15 games for Elton’s €100,000 briefcase LIVE on Saturday night with Amy Macdonald and Mando Diao performing their latest songs and as ever we will be here with commentary and “japes” so join us on Saturday night from 7:15.

In other news, for whatever reason I’m quite looking forward to the reboot of Your Face or Mine? on Comedy Central, Wednesdays at 8pm (that’s tomorrow). Original host Jimmy Carr returns alongside Katherine Ryan stirring things up in the relationship testing game requiring you to judge your partner’s looks against mystery guests – some random, some very not so random, with hilarious consequences. They’re pushing the “love vs money” aspect in the promos. I can’t quite believe it’s been the best part of fifteen years since it was last on!

Show Discussion: Dara O’ Briain’s Go 8 Bit Series 2

Mondays, 10pm,
Dave

Go 8 Bit DLC
Mondays, 11pm,
Dave

UKGameshows/Bother’s Bar Poll Winner Dara O’ Briain’s Go 8 Bit returns to our screens tonight (or any time during the last week on UKTV Play), a panel show that instead of asking questions asks our guests to take part in videogaming challenges.

We’ve watched the preview episode already and we can reveal that they’ve ingeniously changed two points of contention from last series, the stage revolving and the audience voting, by combining them. Otherwise it’s basically the same show (including the sometimes not great use of screen real estate). The guests on the first episode are TV’s hardest working man Richard Osman and Sara Pascoe. They should have chosen Micro Machines 2 and drag racing round the bath over driving round the billiards table in the original though, obv.

Following after the show (and has also apparently been on UKTV Play but rather unhelpfully under ‘G’ for Go 8 Bit when the main show is under ‘D’ for Dara O’ Briain’s Go 8 Bit I have literally just discovered this morning) is Go 8 Bit DLC which looks to be a straight videogaming magazine show starring Ellie, Steve and Sam. Ellie Gibson was one of my fave writers for Eurogamer back in the day so I look forward to watching this in due course.