Show Discussion: Tenable

tenable

It’s the Sporting Triangles reboot we’ve all been waiting for.

Weekdays, 3pm.
ITV

New quiz with Warwick Davies about filling in general knowledge Top 10 lists. This was previously going by the working title Tower of 10, if you were wondering.

Filling in Top 10 lists is not a new concept, in recent memory Topranko and Dirty Rotten Cheater did it years ago and more recently 5 Minutes to a Fortune and The 21st Question, neither of which very successful, did them for their end games. This seems to sounds a little bit like Topranko with a bit of Eggheads and Decimate thrown in for good measure. From the press release:

Warwick Davis presents this intense new game show, brand new and exclusive to ITV.

Teams of five friends, family members or colleagues take it in turns to build up the prize pot solo by filling in the blanks of a ‘top ten’ list on any number of general knowledge subjects. If a player gives five or more correct answers, they add money to the team prize fund and secure their place in the final. The more answers they give after that, the more money they bank. If they get a perfect 10, they add £25,000, making the potential jackpot £125,000.

Players each get one ‘life’ allowing them to give an incorrect answer, but a second mistake will see them eliminated, their winnings wiped from the bank and themselves excluded from the final round. Across the game, the team have three ‘nominates’. If a player is stuck for an answer, they can nominate a team member to provide an answer for them. If a player gives an answer the team captain deems incorrect, they can overrule it and replace it with one of their own – but only once per round.

One by one, players are faced with this daunting task until they reach the final, at which stage the remaining team members come together to face one last board. However, unlike previous rounds, they must find all ten answers to go home with the prize money.

I think filling in Top 10s is easy to grasp (although I wonder what the long term limit is of “good” Top 10s is) but history suggests that filling out an entire list is really hard – not expecting many winners of the endgame from that description although there might yet be some nuance we’re not party to.

Let us know what you think in the comments.

45 Comments

  1. David Howell says:

    Seems like they’ve gone for the “big prize, hardly any winners” approach here. Which makes Tipping Point and its eminently winnable £10k seem like the odd one out in the lineup.

  2. The sound effect is me hitting my head against a brick wall repeatedly as yet another entirely serviceable half-hour show has been stretched out into a full hour slot.

    • The more I think about it, with determination, it would be possible to play three whole teams in an hour for probable small money, then having the best team play one more list for possible big money. More effort, mostly in terms of handling of teams and question-writing, but otherwise similar in terms of budget.

    • A source that matches up to the final list; my guesses would have included the numbers 11, 13 and 16 answers, so I’d have been sunk.

      Other than being v-e-r-y slow, the essential game material and activity is interesting enough, though hardly original. This isn’t horrible, but it’s far too slow for my taste.

      • Brig Bother says:

        I’d agree that it’s slow but it also felt like not much was wasted. Although whether the Tenable Tower will prove to be as iconic a reveal as the Pointless Tower remains to be seen.

        • The reveals of the answers struck me as large chunks of dead air, as did asking play-or-stick every time when there was a spare life. Classic Warwick Banter is not classic if its classic nature needs to be pointed out explicitly.

          I’m just impatient.

          • Brig Bother says:

            I think you are, you get bantz (which seemed a lot less forced and more amusing than other shows manage) and about 45 reveals per episode. I wouldn’t say it was quickfire by any means, but I can’t say I was bored. If every response was immediately followed by ‘yep, that’s there’ it wouldn’t hold interest. There’s no ten minute ‘ooh, why have you gone for that?’ conversation after each answer, there’s little talking out.

            I would agree that there’s no point turning playing on into a decision when they have a life left, but then I’ve established it shouldn’t be a decision full stop.

            I quite liked the sound effects although I can understand why they might be divisive.

  3. Brig Bother says:

    I liked that, I think the central conceit is quite fun and Warwick’s a great fit, certainly more convincing here than on Celebrity Squares.

    I note that it isn’t quite Top Tens, it’s expanded to First 10 and Last 10 which should widen the amount of entertaining questions possible. I still don’t think there will be many winners. The catchphrase for losers should surely be ‘your position’s untenable’.

    Given the amount of likely winning teams I’m not sure it’s necessary to turn the money ladder into a gamble – it’s a game of accumulation so let them accumulate. Limiting their options when they get past five would still be perfectly fine but I’d let them keep guessing until their luck runs out.

    I presume if more than one person doesn’t make the final in the captain’s round they’ll need further answers to unlock more players?

    All that stepping forward in the final is a bit like series one Weakest Link.

  4. Andrew 'Kesh' Sullivan says:

    Well, no need to give a full run-down as the press release has pretty much done it all for me 😀

    Overall, it’s an OK show with a decent level of challenge to it. The idea of the money getting higher for finding more answers gives a decent risk/reward system. Only thing with the final is it will be VERY difficult to win, with it being ‘find all 10 answers or you get nothing’, but that IS alleviated slightly by having your team-mates as lives. But once you’re on your own with a number of answers left to fill in, then you might as well kiss your winnings goodbye. If they did it like the previous rounds, where once you hit 5 answers, you get a portion of the winnings, gradually getting bigger for more answers, but then it’ll seem too easy and give it ‘High Stakes’ syndrome where teams will just get to 5 answers, then cut and run.

    I WILL say that the reveal of the answers takes up a fair bit of time, as Chris M. Dickson has said. It really does feel like a half-hour show stretched out to an hour because of the answer reveals. The Nominates and the Overrule button are lifted directly from Decimate, so is this the way game shows are going to go now, by lifting elements directly from other shows? No wonder there’s no originality any more…

    Overall, I’ll most likely watch more of this as answering the lists is interesting. Don’t expect to see any huge wins as it most likely won’t happen. Another case of ‘big jackpot that will never be achieved without a PERFECT game’.

    • Andrew Hain says:

      The press release didn’t give enough information when I read about it so will you please at least give the rundown for my benefit?

      • Brig Bother says:

        A team of five play. The captain sees the question and selects a team member to take it on – each player must play once. If they don’t get at least five of the ten answers they are eliminated. At five answers they can stop and bank £1k for the final, or they can keep going for £2.5k, £5k, £10k, £15k, £25k for all ten (sub: please check). They are allowed to give one incorrect answer, a second and they’re eliminated. The team get three ‘nominates’ throughout the show where the player can ask a team member to suggest an answer. Once per round the captain may overrule by hitting a button and substitute an answer (although if the original answer was on the list it’s taken out of play, lowering the prize potential).

        After everyone has had a go the captain plays a list. The captain can’t be eliminated, but if they get to five answers they can go for cash or revive a teammate for the final.

        In the final they get a choice of two categories and must find all ten answers to win the money. Each player alive takes it turn to give an answer. If they are wrong they are eliminated. If the whole team is eliminated they leave with nothing. If they get all ten they win the banked money.

        • Andrew 'Kesh' Sullivan says:

          A couple of little things to add. Once a player gets to the £1k mark and decides to play on, they can’t use any Nominates and the Overrule button is inactive.

          Also when it’s the captain’s turn to play their list, the Overrule can’t be used as Warwick points out that the captain can’t overrule themself.

  5. John R says:

    Just watching now – After he gets through the first 5 on the James Bond list Warwick keeps asking him if he wants to stick or play on with a life

    Fine I thought, he gets two goes at getting a right answer UNTIL he got one wrong then he has the chance to stick and bail meaning Warwick asking him if he wants to stick or play on every time before that point a bit erm…pointless?!

  6. jon says:

    The game play is nice, but pace is slow – very slow.

    Other small gripes…
    Set is far to dark, that horrid sound effect on the reveals is grating, the same three shots before each reveal is lazy directing and finally who the hell did those 80’s looking titles?

  7. Cheesebiscuits says:

    I don’t get why Warick has to keep reminding us that they have a life, three nominates and of course, the captain can overule. Although it makes a much better use of these mechanics compared to decmiate, it could be so much quicker.

    Once you fail once, you’d be mad not to stop if you can. Why were the group gasping when he chose to play on in the bond round with a life?

    Maybe if you lowered the team sizes, you could have two or even three teams and faster walls with a jackpot round at the end

    I do like the way the answers are revealed though although some walls seem so much easier to others although i guess that is susceptible to what i myself know 🙂

    Anyway, interesting but speed it up.

    As a general question, why do ITV put quizzes on so early. I missed all but one episode of the second series of one thousand heartbeats becuase i was never home by four.

    • Brig Bother says:

      Mainly because they have to fill airtime and quizzes are cheap in telly terms (about £25k an episode to make at that time of day) and if they find a breakout hit there’s a great return to be had.

      Although I noticed there were no adverts in the ad breaks today.

      • Danny Kerner says:

        The advert breaks are short due to them needing to cram in a weather report

        • David B says:

          I don’t think that explains it. They would have dropped the trailers and ran adverts if they’d sold any.

          • John R says:

            Don’t ITV / the advertisers try and get as much advertising quota as possible shoved between X Factor and IACGMOOH at this time of year?

            I mean Sainsburys bought the entire advert break this evening as an example!

            • Brig Bother says:

              Yes, something like that.

              Wiki: “On the commercial channels, the amount of airtime allowed by the UK broadcasting regulator Ofcom for advertising is an overall average of 7 minutes per hour, with limits of 12 minutes for any particular clock hour (8 minutes per hour between 6pm and 11pm).”

            • David B says:

              Yes, that’s the thing. You’re allowed to do things like crash from one programme at the top of the hour straight into another one to maximise mid-programme adverts for that hour, but you can’t “not run” adverts at 3pm in order to “save them up” for 9pm.

              • Qusion says:

                It is true however that the total amount of adverts you can run in a day, is far less than the total time from adding up all the available clock hours.

                If you only broadcast 2 hours a day, you get 14 mins to use, but there is nothing to prevent you scheduling 2 mins in the first hour, and 12 mins in the second if it is off peak.

                For a 24 hour channel like ITV you have 168 minutes to use, but these are going to be concentrated in peak time, and then whats left concentrated on the better performing off peak shows.

                The only time you get an even distribution is on something like ITVBe, which has a large chunk of the day with teleshopping – and therefore no adverts – so all other breaks in the day are maximised.

                I haven’t seen it done in the 3pm slot on a weekday before, but the best examples are the 6pm programmes on Saturday, which are usually low on adverts as they are indeed used up in the big entertainment shows.

    • scouser says:

      Cheesebiscuits
      No need to ever miss programmes, they’re all on catch-up for at least a week! I rarely watch quiz programmes in real time – catch-up also has the (big) advantage of the facility to fast-forward.
      As for Tenable, I found it slow. There’d be more impetus if instead of stretching one team of 5 to an hour, they had 2 teams of 4. I had to mute the sound and use subtitles as that infuriating sound effect was driving me bonkers! I agree with David B. that the list should go top to bottom.

  8. David B says:

    I quite liked it, BUT.. surely the Pointless-type effect should go top to bottom, not the other way? When you get to the harder answers, they are surely likely to be near the bottom so there’s no surprise if a borderline answer isn’t revealed in the lowest few steps.

    My main gripe was that there seemed to be slightly too many rules, particularly about when certain things could and couldn’t happen. It just needed a bit more elegance.

  9. Peter Todd says:

    I did recorded it yesterday & watched it last night. It’s an Ok show. Maybe not more than two series. For me Warwick is a great quiz host. This show is a great play on. It does fill to me it’s an updated version of the BBC quiz Who Dares Wins.
    I will give the show 8/10.

  10. jon says:

    Peter – i’m not sure it’s an updated Who Dares Wins – for me that is a far superior format.
    But it is serviceable and if they sort out pacing it could become a staple of the 3pm slot…

  11. Brig Bother says:

    Today’s final: all ten chocolates that are or have been featured in a box of Celebrations. In no particular order.

    Interested to know how many questions that have precisely ten answers are. Numbers from one to ten.

    • David says:

      -The ten events in the decathlon

      -Excluding the goalkeeper, the 10 starters of the English squad in their first game of the 2016 Euros

      -The traditional gifts given in the UK for the first 10 anniversaries of a marriage

  12. Arun Uttamchandani says:

    The chirpy theme music doesn’t match the rather gloomy looking set. This sort of show reminds me of Break the Safe in that it offears a large prize but NOBODY has a chance of winning it.

  13. Arun Uttamchandani says:

    I’m just commenting while watching Monday’s episode on a very broken STV player, so I am already pretty furious. After watching the first 15 minutes, it seems this show could work better if the contestants were strangers, as there is that notion of whether you will chicken out and stick at £1,000 while somebody has done the hard work. This will sound picky, but the LEDs corresponding the answers should stay green. For example, if the second answer is correct, the second row of LEDs would stay green for the rest of the round. Finally, shouldn’t the count up skip the already mentioned answers?

  14. Arun Uttamchandani says:

    It seems the sort of show that would work in a 45 minute slot. Sadly, this never happens in ITV daytime.

    • Thomas Sales says:

      If they went some, they could trim this and Rebound down to 30 minutes each. Perhaps when they air their Christmas repeats?

      • Arun Uttamchandani says:

        I do think Tenable and Rebound would be very tightly packed with content and the worry there would be you end up with a situation you feel no emotions to the contestants because you don’t know who they are and what they would do with the money. Condense both shows down to 45 minutes and I think it would work best.

  15. Brig Bother says:

    I’m told this hit a million yesterday. This is good for slot (compare with Pick Me about 500k and 1KHB about 800k).

    Two episodes not yet enough for a trend though.

  16. Danny Kerner says:

    Today’s final list was top 10 toy story 3 characters as listed on imdb

  17. Tom F says:

    I’ve noticed there’s a Genius-esque tactic to be used occasionally – sometimes when the list is a ‘list of 10’ rather than a top ten, it will be in alphabetical order; so as one progresses the positions of the gaps can give a hint as to im/possible answers. (Happened today, list 3).

    Strangely, no-one acknowledges this, even though it must be obviously apparent in the studio.

  18. Has anyone won any money on this yet, or is it time to break out the “Still no winners on Takeshi’s Castle” gag yet?

  19. Brig Bother says:

    I’m still finding this highly entertaining, although I still reckon if you get to five you should be allowed to go on until your luck runs out.

    There’s quite an unfortunate thing with the format in that the smaller the jackpot the fewer people are likely to have made it to the final so it’s harder to win. It’s a bit anti-intuitive.

    Do watch today’s episode if you can, it’s a surprisingly exciting final given some *world class* sub-optimal play, even when the game is set-up so that a decision is obvious occasionally, occasionally, someone will leave you open-mouthed.

  20. Brig Bother says:

    This has been doing around 950k throughout the run I’m told – not quite amazing amazing amazing but still rather good in the slot. It certainly ought to be getting another go on that sort of figure.

    I’m glad it’s doing OK. As a show it gives me major series one Pointless vibes, my issue is where can it go once all the entertaining top tens are used up?

  21. Daniel H says:

    Enjoyable and rating well: I expect to see this one back!

    Some statistics for you after all 20 shows:

    5 Final Wins
    Lowest Amount Banked: £1,000 (x5)
    Highest Amount Banked: £37,500
    Just one Perfect 10 in the main game

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