The Cellar - April 2004
Part one of an exciting computer game based feature!
Er, it's probably not as good as it should be. Sorry.
But hey! Tomorrow is Sunday Colour Supplement day. Good.
Nobody's Vault but it's own
30th April 2004: The Vault is back. Yay! Sadly it's still being hosted by Melanie Sykes. If M Sykes was just a little bit better, she'd still be rubbish at it. Anyway, it's "vaulted" (thanks) over Sunday and Monday to find a new slot on Tuesday nights starting May 11th and has scored a "17 weeks" from the judges. Sorry.
Rubbish in Paradise
30th April 2004: Trouble in Paradise looks like being, heh, trouble for ITV1. It's opening show debuted with just three million viewers. Who could have predicted that yet another house renovation show on during peak time with yet another phone vote aspect would have been such a turn off for the viewers? Why Michael, certainly not I.
Poker Million: The Masters DEUCE
30th April 2004: I really hate it when Jesse May refers to it like that. Anyway, if you haven't gathered yet, I'm in this evening and will try very hard to keep up some sort of commentary on tonight's game on the poker page.
29th April 2004: Thanks to someone at TVHome for posting this link to The Sun's website showing exciting pictures of the new Big Brother house. Features include:
Of course, if these things really do turn out to be in the house and this isn't an exciting hotbed of lies than a) we should probably denounce it as being quite pathetic and b) probably look forward to it anyway.
In fact we're going to do c) and comment that that woodland scenery for the bedroom looks really bad.
The Generator has failed
29th April 2004: Well it looks like they're not going to make a series of Paul O Grady's The Generation Game. This is a biddova shame really as historically comically abrasive hosts have made it their own. And Jim Davidson really didn't. But anyway.
In other news, the media are reporting the fact that Graham Norton's new Saturday evening show is going to be "family entertainment" and "less risque" than his post watershed post pub Channel 4 show. This, from the way it's being reported, would seem to be a massive shock. And there was us looking forward to and expecting hilarious stories about novelty vibrators and things before the lottery draw. Tch, eh?
Trouble in Paradise starts this evening.
29th April 2004: I'm not sure if I can be bothered to watch it. Why not draw your own conclusions?
"Well done, you're watching Win Lose or Draw... Late!"
28th April 2004: This is officially the best opening from any show ever, including the remake of He-Man where he goes through the spiel he used to go through but then hilariously and surprisingly gets blasted by a laser half way through.
Also: Liza Tarbuck seems to be drunk.
In other news:
28th April 2004: THERE IS NO OTHER NEWS.
UPDATE: No, Company Batchelor of the Year Award 2004 seems to be on and seems to be hosted by Tara Palmer-Tompkinson and Sara Cawood. Who'd have thought that, eh?
I'm going to bed.
Marquiz de Sade
27th April 2004: "You've been a bad boy. A very bad boy. You've not played any of my records for a long time have you? [Groan]. Well I think, uh, you need to be punished. Very hard indeed. So now I'm going to tie you up, pin your eyelids back and make you read the new reviews of Casino Casino, The Games, Come and Have a Go... If You Think You're Smart Enough and Three's a Crowd that Brig has put up in the reviews section. Oh yes."
If you'd like to write to the Marquiz de Sade about gameshows or anything at all for a possible new regular feature I'm sort of planning, a letters page called 'Singularly Asked Questions,' then write something to the usual address.
Coming to a screen near you...
27th April 2004: Test Your Pet with Rolf Harris on Saturday. The search to find Britain's Brainest Pet. Could this lead to the Pet's Win Prizes revival we've all secretly been hoping for? Let's hope so. By filling in the survey, you can help answer those burning questions like: "which pets are most likely to sleep with their owners?" Hmm.
Meanwhile, BBC are also filming The Challenge, where normal people like you and me (well, perhaps not) are trained and then undergo big adventure races across the desert and jungle and things like that (due to hit our screens in the Autumn). Let's hope this leads to a recommissioning of the rather good Hercules that was on BBC3 back in January.
Is anybody watching Linda Barker's Changing Rooms meets Survivor -a-like Building the Dream? Us neither. Still, Carol Vorderman's Changing Rooms meets Big Brother meets some sunshine Trouble in Paradise is starting soon. At least one of these shows is based on Aussie megahit The Block, unless I've got my wires crossed and The Block is coming as well.
Finally, there's Celebrity Fear Factor debuting on SKY again in the Autumn, not only featuring celebs from the recent series of The Games but also seemingly the types of celebs who turn up on Totally Top Trumps. It will, of course, be far more entertaining than we're allowed to let on.
Really finally, it looks like Big Brother 5 is definitely on for a May 28th start in a double bill with the last Friends ever. Definitely in as much as "Teletext say so but Endemol and Channel 4 aren't confirming it," at any rate.
(Part 1 in a series of x)
26th April 2004: Random question now: whatever happened to the proposed second series of 2002's winner of the "it's good but it's also wildly overrated" award International King of Sports? Well, according to the Endemol UK website it's due to come on our screens Spring 2004. Hurrah!
It's a bit Parky over at ITV
26th April 2004: That means "cold" for all our non-Northern dialect based chums. Perhaps he just wants to bring back Give Us A Clue, but he wants to make it Give Us A Clue Late after the success of Win Lose or Draw Late (which, coincidentally, Mick Fleetwood hears has been successful enough to have filmed more episodes recently. Good.) where people like Lionel Blair and Liza Goddard mime things like "Fanny by Gaslight".
Anyway, unbeliveably, this story is to do with Saturday night ratings figures. Come and Have a Go... If You Think You're Smart Enough is, frankly bombing in the ratings. The first show of the evening is currently averaging just over 3million viewers. Against the mighty mighty Ant and Dec this is disappointing but probably to be expected. The good news for CAHAETC. is that Ant and Dec's replacement, Davina McCall's Saturday Night Lurve Buffet is only rating about half of Ant and Dec. The bad news for CAHAETC. is that the big prize bit after Casualty is still bombing. From Casualty's 8 million lead in, a whopping four million people have decided they've got better things to do than watch Nicky Campbell talk at people for twenty minutes. And if they're leaving now, why are they going to watch the evening show which tediously I don't have a figure for? This is seriously denting Parkinson's audience (there's a Parkinson's Disease gag here somewhere... no, I can't think of it) so he's quite happy about changing channel.
Meanwhile, Pat Gibson's shock million pound win that everyone knew was happening about three weeks ago only rated 6.2m. That's about 15p for every man, woman and child who watched it. Think about it.
I was going to draw a graph at this point, but in fact I just reused the Ant and Dec Alt tag joke. Sorry.
University Challenge: The Professionals
26th April 2004: Duh-da-da, duh-da-da-da-der-neeerneeerneeerneernerner-da-da-da-da. Doobie doobie doo dah, doobie der-der bee-do. Ner-ner-na-na-na-ner-ner-ner-ner-ner-ner-NEEEEERRRRRRR!
The Professionals and University Challenge together at last, there. And look! There's a sans-serif new font for the teams and a new font for the scores. How terrifically exciting!
There's also a new background for the teams. No longer in the red academic lava lamp style (to represent the heat of competition no doubt) now it's a lovely shade of blue with some soft flashing lights (to represent the coldness of the host. Except Paxman isn't that cold towards them really).
I won't make a habit of this because I don't normally watch it. However it was the CBI (which I regularly misread as CSI, America's top rated crime investigation drama) against the Royal Opera House. It ended with a dead heat, so it all went down to the exciting final starter tie-break. Which hilariously was one that seemed to unfairly change tack halfway through but not before someone from the Royal Opera House buzzed in and blew it. Top quiz!
Sunday Colour Supplement
Telly Selly Time
If you want to be at one with the regulars, you might want to buy some things that they're currently 'into'.
Music: The most played album on our special album jukebox is Scissor Sisters by The Scissor Sisters (£11.99). An exciting mixture of electronic rock, disco, pop and rudeness you're bound to like. Filthy/Gorgeous, in fact, contains the funniest moment in pop ever. They recently had a hit with Take Your Mamma, well I recommend taking your credit card out all night and buying this superb album!!! In other news, Pop Art: Pet Shop Boys - The Hits is going for £9.99. What have you done to deserve that, eh?
DVDs: The Day Today (2 Disc Set) is going for a frankly unbelievable £11.99. Truly Chris Morris' finest hour (other than On The Hour that is). Meanwhile, if like myself you quite enjoyed the recent film Shaun of the Dead, perhaps you would be interested in Spaced? I recommend the Spaced Series 1 and 2 Box Set (£14.99). I was going to link to the individual series DVDs which were going for £15.99 each when I looked last but that's changed to £6.97 each now. Oh! The brutal hilarity.
Books: Running a bar, I don't have an awful lot of time for reading. However, I am halfway through Theory of Poker by David Sklansky (£14.79) and hope to finish it sometime before I die.
Rumours by Fleetwood Mac
"Hello, I'm The Running Man's Mick Fleetwood. When I'm not acting in top sci-fi films, I like to read internet messageboards to see what interesting gameshow related rumours are being circulated. I can't confirm or deny of these, of course, I've been denied access to the British media ever since I did that Brit Awards. But anyway. I hear that Big Brother 5 is going to begin on May 28th and will last for ten weeks rather than the usual nine. I read that largely due to its success in America (where it's called the rather rubbish Most Extreme Elimination Tournament) and across the world, Takeshi's Castle is being remade as a one off special. I had another one but I can't remember it right now. Goodbye!"
Pat Gibson wins the million!
25th April 2004: Well I bet nobody saw that coming. Can I go home now?
Chas and Dave welcome you
"'Ello, I'm Chas and he's Dave, and we want to welcome you to Bother's Cocktail Bar. We'll be propping it up all week singing some classic songs from araaahnd the ol' joanna, like the theme tune to Crackerjack ["Crackerjack!" - Brig] and Rabbit which seems particularly relevant seeing it was Easter a couple of weeks ago. Rabbit rabbit rabbit etc."
24th April 2004: I'm actually out tonight so I can't give any sort of news on who won what. So here's a preview of sorts:
Come and Have a Go... If You Think You're Smart Enough
You've got until about 6:45 to register if you want to play. Call 09011 332211 or see the website
David Beckham's pain in the backside Rebecca Loos is on Love on a Saturday Night this evening.
Pat Gibson on Who Wants to be a Millionaire? this evening. He's on £250K. He has two lifelines left. WILL HE DO IT? It could go EITHER WAY.
Excitingly I'm sure, there's a feature on how I reckon 24 Hour Quiz should have been done in the Features section. How exciting!
Hutton I Got News For You
23rd April 2004: Greg Dyke hosted Have I Got News For You this evening. But, er, I was out. Still, I'll catch he repeat. Except I'll be out. So I'll tape it. Except I'm meant to be taping a repeat of 24 for somebody. Um.
I'm sure it was good though. In the meantime, Des Lynam is hosting next week. Des is no stranger to hosting panel shows, he was the original host of They Think It's All Over on the radio (and the pilot of the TV series as well).
Poker Million: The Masters 2
23rd April 2004: I was going to do a live commentary for this this week but, er, I was out. Terry Matthews finished third, Willie Tann (no he won't) finished second and minor celebrity (he must be, he was in Celebrity Poker Club) Zac Goldsmith won through to a semi-final win. Jesse May Lines of the Day: "It takes two to gamble... all's friendly in love and poker."
More Happy Hour
23rd April 2004: We've already got several correct answers to the Happy Hour competition. Why not make it harder for them by entering yourself?
Tomorrow will see a feature on what I think they should have done with 24 Hour Quiz and Sunday will feature a colour lifestyle supplement because the weekend is awfully quiet for media news.
It's Happy Hour!
22nd April 2004: It's Happy Hour where you can win some Amazon vouchers. Go: here.
22nd April 2004: The contestants for the forthcoming Strictly Come Dancing have been revealed as: Martin Offiah (of rugby fame), Lesley Garrett (of opera), David Dickinson (Bid-up.tv adverts), Verona Joseph (token actress no-one's heard of. She's in Holby City, apparently). Jason Wood (token comic nobody's heard of), Natasha Kaplinsky (newsreader and guest panellist on Have I Got Bruce For You), Christopher Parker ("oh, him!" - Spencer from Eastenders) and Claire Sweeney (ITV's 60 Minute Makeover). Tess Daly will co-host, for some reason.
Interestingly it appears to be Come Dancing Academy - the contestants will be judged and the public will vote them off week by week with the proceeds going towards Sport Relief. There will be a daily show on BBC3.
Now bless it, it's a different format for a Saturday night (well, it's Sport Relief "Does" Fame Academy but never mind) and bless him, it's Brucie (and Tess Daly) and bless them all, it would be quite nice if it succeeded. But can we really see this happening?
See also Johnny Vaughan and Denise Van Outen's planned new show. I really like Johnny Vaughan and tend to think he deserves lots better than he gets (er, the Capital Breakfast Show. Um...). Sure, 'Orrible was exactly that and JV Tonight was only really OK from what I saw of it, but of the one episode of his Live Shed Show on BBC3 was really entertaining. However, the new show has already been labelled Johnny and Denise's Saturday Night Takeaway by just about everybody. Whether it's a bit like Ant and Dec or not (and even if it is I suspect it will still be quite a good little show) the comparisons are already there and it faces an uphill struggle (from a struggling slot as it is) from the outset. The trend suggests that if you don't get there first you may as well not bother at all. The timing is impeccable. Impeccably bad that is.
Three's a Crowd
22nd April 04: You'll have to forgive me but in my opinion, Three's a Crowd is the best show in the reality television dating hybrid gameshow sub-genre. I think there will be a review next week, but anyway. About a week ago, I watched it and there was no conclusion. I've been busy all week and watched it again today. Oh man! It's a record breaking Day Eight and still nobody's paired up. Anyway, tonight the lovely Scandinavian Sandra picked a bloke called Rob for a third time and this time they both came out of their rooms for the midnight tryst after Sandra coming out on Day Six but not Rob, Rob coming out on Day Seven but not Sandra. Awwww. Clearly, Rob won her heart in the same way he won the game of ("Shithead" - Ed) on their card game date earlier.
Do you see?
21st April 04: Brucie's Strictly Come Dancing will begin on May 15th. Strictly Come Dancing is the worst, least scannable programme title in the history of television (I'm assuming it's a joke on Strictly Ballroom), but there you go.
Not very keen(o)
21st April 04: Oh my word. As a bar which has NTL cable, I've just witnessed one of the worst things on television ever. It is made by Sky. It is on for one hour every night on Sky One Mix. It is... Sky Vegas Live. I think there is a feature on channels or things which aren't really gameshows but use gameshow style set-ups in the offing. So if you can think of anything other than Sky Vegas Live, Avago, Bid-up.tv, Price-drop.tv, Auction World et al then please drop us a line.
Endemol Endemol, they've all got it Endemol! No, hang on...
21st April 04: It's a slow format news day and I'm tired and drunk, so let's just say that Endemol made £90m last year, a 40% increase on the year before. 150% of that was due to Big Brother (wooh!), 69% thanks to The Games, 36% thanks to The Salon and about 10% thanks to Brainteaser on Channel 5 (one of few shows on television that funds itself entirely on its telephone calls, you know). Sadly, it took a 225% loss thanks to the rubbish 24 Hour Quiz but we like to think of that as justice. I would have drawn a comedy graph at this point but, well, you know how it is.
First there was Celebrity Poker Club, and now there there is another one. Of it.
20th April 04: Annoying as it is that your proprietor regularly follows Celebrity Poker Club but always fails to catch the final whenever it's on (Clive Sinclair wins. SPOILER! Oh.), Challenge have throught it a good idea to make a second series of it to go out at the end of June. It will be nine episodes of 90 minutes length apparently (which would sit quite well in the place where the World Poker Tour normally is, I suppose). Jesse May is back (back, BACK!) although according to C21, Grub Smith will be co-hosting. Will this mean the end of The Excellent Jesse and Barney Celebrity Poker Show? We're hoping not.
Just an observation. Well two.
20th April 04: This said though, Challenge have made some bad adverts of late. They're currently showing Knightmare series six in a nightly 7:30 time slot and are advertising it with adverts saying, essentially, "weren't the eighties rubbish". This should be funny, but for the ususally factually accurate Challenge to use this advert on a show made in the early nineties is just IDIOTIC. And let's not forget their current Survivor ads, "it's not about winning, it's not about losing, it's about...surviving." This would be a very similar advertising campaign to the sadly defunvt Brit version then. This would also, of course, be a very similar advertising campaign that annoyed producer Nasty Nigel Lythgoe quite considerably. "Of course it's about winning. The prize is one million pounds." CRETINS.
Ant and Dec's Sunday Night Takeaway!
19 Apr 04: Sunday night saw the inaugral BAFTA awards which in fact saw Ant and Dec takeaway nothing. Oh. In fact, gameshows didn't seem to get a look in.
So let's look at The Golden Rose of Montreux awards instead where - hurrah!- they won the award for best gameshow hosts and their Saturday Night Takeaway won the award for Best Variety Show.
Brig Bother's personal prediction of Distraction picking up at least a silver award went thankfully unfounded. Hurrah! Except they gave the best gameshow award to the one and only My New Best Friend. What is it about those mad Montreux judges awarding prizes to really rubbish shows? Actually, this is quite amusing because C4 have already axed it, making it just like Oblivious in the hidden-camera-comes-good-but-is-bad stakes.
Is Harvey the fastest man in the ENTIRE WORLD?
19th April 2004: Sunday night also saw the inagrual The Games: Champion of Champions on Channel 4 where the top two male and female contestants from last year (Back to Realty winner James Hewitt, Harvey off of So Solid Crew, Terri Dwyer from Hollyoaks and Josie D'arby, standing in for Miss World (well Mel C obviously couldn't do it after the judo last year - arf!) play against the top contestants from this year (Shane Lynch, Mr Gay UK aka Jarrod Batchelor, Katy Hill and Lady Isabella Hervey (off of Victoria Hervey fame)). Highlights!
Lady Isabella Hervey messing up the hammer throw quite considerably.
James Hewitt messing up the weightlift quite considerably.
Oh OK, he had a bad arm, But still.
Harvey from So Solid Crew literally flying down the home straight in the 4x100m relay. He began about 10m down on Mr Gay UK and ended up about 10m up by the end. This led Team 2003 to a two point victory over the class of 2004.
All the bar regulars really like The Games and seeing as this was only 7/8 months after the first one, could there concievably be another offing in the Autumn? The ratings have picked up steadily over the week - good thing.