Stool Pigeon Christmas 2020 – The Results

By | December 15, 2020

Ding dong merrily on high, in heaven the GOSSIP is ringing!

You’ve spent the day sending me your anonymous industry goss, let’s see what you’ve sent. As usual, I’m only printing stuff which I *suspect* has an element of truth to it but there is no guarantee that what is printed is fact, that’s just between the person who wrote it and the people involved. Diving in, then:

  • New game show filmed a pilot in MediaCity in October with a terrible title – “I cheated on a game show!“. Eight players split into two groups by a nearest-to question, fastest correct four are allowed to cheat on the next five questions. Everyone else has to try and sniff out cheaters to replace them in the cheat zone, then head-to-heads where you can cheat, then an endgame where the one remaining player competes against the three they beat to take home £30k. Hosted by Claudia Winkleman and Suzi Ruffell is the assistant who knows who cheated. Meant to fill an hour timeslot, so I suspect it’ll be VERY slow. Probably only 20-25 questions in the entire show on average.

Intrigued to find out how the contestants are able to cheat, they get fed the answers presumably. Anyway, this sounds a bit confused.

  • Only connect is moving to a new day in 2021 – instead of Mondays it will be on Thursdays at 8.

This feels a bit attention seeky, but I print it in case it’s true, especially as the BBC has form with bumping OC around the schedule.

  • ITV’s Starstruck has been reported as a reboot of Stars In Their Eyes. Technically it isn’t, despite coming from the same production group as the Harry Hill version. But it is. They’ve added some more direct competitive elements and a judging panel, but it’s punters transforming into tribute acts of their favourite artists. However, if you make the comparison in front of the MD of the production company, he gets very irate…

This remains absolutely hilarious.

  • Worrying times for fans of any game shows produced by Banijay or (what was) EndemolShine. The takeover is becoming a bloodbath, with many of the most experienced and senior talent being culled in the quest to save millions in overheads.

Great timing for Richard Osman to release a best-selling book, really.

  • Finally have something to contribute, although not that exciting all things considered and maybe a bit “Digital Spy” but who cares Was speaking to someone who knows Prince of The Castle Jordan North and they said that he only agreed to go in very last minute having been asked earlier in the summer then turned down. Jordan then revealed this on Radio 1 last week – but what he didn’t reveal (Obviously) was that someone didn’t drop out, someone was basically chucked out. During the promo shoot a few weeks before this person was apparently so vile and hard to work with that they got told they were off the show – which matches up with the more nicey nicey vibe they’ve had in camp this year (and recent years). Would obviously be more interesting if I knew who this was, and I’ve not found a name yet despite the line up being hardly a secret when the promo shoots are going on. Oh well. Back to having nothing interesting to say next time.

It was Naughty Boy, wasn’t it?

  • “The year is 2026. Britain has ceased to be a constitutional monarchy and has been converted into one big game show. The royal family have been taken captive… Can you and your team rescue them?” Well, if that’s the alternative, would you want to? Play Kinect-style video games projected onto really large screens at Electric Gamebox in London, Manchester and at Lakeside, at least once lockdown reopens. Looks like a great toy, even if not a great game. Sixty minutes, £34. (Discounts off-peak and for kids.)”

I’ll take my 10%, thanks.

  • The Taskmaster S11 line-up WON’T be announced after Thursday’s final, it will be after the new years celeb special instead.


  • The Amazing Race Australia not only managed to film a season domestically during the lockdown, it’s also apparently going to be the longest race ever. Which pretty much means the host has 50% more chance in which to say something casually racist as his previous history would suggest is likely.
  • The whole ‘Banksy is actually Neil Buchanan from Art Attack‘ thing that was doing the rounds a while back was a joke on David Mitchell’s fake-news-before-it-was-called-that themed panel show The Bubble back in 2010. See 25 and a half minutes into this.
  • I just wanted to say someone should get the rights for Blather Round to make that a gameshow. It’s too good to pass up.
  • Does The Crystal Maze have adjudicators? I was looking on a fansite showing all the revival episode stats and somehow a celebrity team with only ten seconds in the dome got more tokens than nearly every other team. Just seems odd to me.
  • The most recent episode of Fingers on Buzzers featured Jenny and Lucy playing old quiz board games and then musing over starting a Twitch channel in which they did just that. If only they had been alerted to the possibility of game shows over Twitch just a few episodes ago, eh?

From the “I don’t think this is true” department, but quite funny:

  • Wayne Sleep did a vom when on The Wheel because of the spinning.

You’d think a dancer would be able to deal with spinning though, surely.


A couple of things have come to light since this post went live.

  • It sounds like I Cheated On A Gameshow! is true and for C4, I’ve had independent verification, and thanks to John R for reminding us he went to see a pilot called Cheat! six whole years ago. It still sounds a bit confused and awful, and just feels like the latest “quiz but one of them is cheating” formats every production company seems to have but doesn’t tend to work. They’re even trying it with Craig Ferguson in the US next month with The Hustler.
  • We get quite a lot of ‘banal’ gossip come through, X is getting a Celebrity Special, that’s not really hot gossip just how television tends to work. However sometimes something comes along that manages to be both so box ticking and banal that it feels like a joke. Ladies and gentlemen, I read this and dismissed it but it turns out it’s an actual thing that’s happened:

Channel 4 is piloting a dating show hosted by Tom Allen, my understanding is the show ends with a prisoner’s dilemma.


12 thoughts on “Stool Pigeon Christmas 2020 – The Results

  1. Brekkie

    The cheating show sounds awful. That said on that premise just seen The Hustler promoted by ABC alongside The Chase which looks quite fun, created by TV’s Richard Bacon.

    Surely time BBC2 found another half hour show to partner with Only Connect and then have two hour-long quiz blocks a week.

    1. Brig Bother Post author

      Ooh, good spot!

      Although TBH it wouldn’t surprise me if every production company has got a “quiz, except one of them is cheating” format somewhere in their files. I can’t think of any that made it to air that have been successful.

      1. David

        Le Tricheur (the Cheater) has been on in Quebec for almost 10 years and over 1500 eps- though part of that is that it’s more of a comedy-based show (the contestants are celebs who play for charity- they play all week)- here’s an ep from 2029:

    1. David

      Warwick does have that Willow series for Disney+ to film sometime next year (for a 2022 debut) as well..

    2. John R

      Great spot, wonder if it’ll end up like Eggheads if this Willow thing is a success and Warwick will eventually just sack it off full stop

      I don’t think it is that difficult for 1 person, 200 odd episodes over 4 years when they’re filming 3 a day…poor Ben has been at the seaside for over 1,000 episodes over 8 years after all!

  2. Alex McMillan

    Imagine rocking up to the Tenable studio expecting to meet Mr. Mr. Celebrity Squares himself and instead being met by Sally Lindsay. I wouldn’t be disappointed, but I’d be incredibly perplexed.

  3. Henry R

    Last year my friend was a contestant in a runthrough for a quiz show made by the same people who do Tenable, that was hosted by Sally. She said she was a pretty good at it. Guessing it left an impression.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.