Three bland new comedy series last week, two on Channel 4 and one on BBC1

No, that’s not a typo in the headline. These three newcomers are scraping the bottom of the entertainment barrel. rating

The concept behind ‘I Literally Just Told You’ (C4) is simple enough – contestants (members of the public) have to answer questions based on their recall of oral and visual clues mentioned or seen in the preceding parts of the show.

Jimmy Carr was a good choice to host this new game show, his mildly sarcastic/ mocking approach was very much needed for what would otherwise be a pretty mundane attempt at entertainment. Fortunately Jimmy controlled his irritating laugh.

As usual the opener had a bumper cash prize to hook viewers and if contestant one, Al from Cornwall, wasn’t a ringer employed to make mistakes so that the game appeared tougher, he certainly did that job very well.

Why Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, the eminent space scientist, was a question setter on the show is a mystery. Lest we forgot the name of the show it was repeated every three minutes which if it becomes the norm will really begin to jar very quickly.

Plenty of scope here for viewer participation so it might catch on. rating

Carr’s game show followed a ‘Night In’ (C4) in which we find the ubiquitous Josh Widdicombe and pal Alex Brooker spending a night in unusual locations with a celebrity friend. The first episode saw the pair joined by Roisin Conaty to spend a night doing a one hour commercial for Alton Towers. With so much excellent TV available on so many channels and streamers, there simply isn’t enough time to waste watching drivel like this.

Fun for them maybe: for the viewing public not so much. rating

Finally BBC1’s The Weakest Link was another complete waste of 45 minutes, despite the equally ubiquitous, Romesh Ranganathan’s best efforts to generate tension. The return of this iconic quiz show saw it downgraded to the realms of a purile celebrity game show. The first edition was called a ‘Strictly Special’: a blatant attempt at capitalising on the dance show’s popularity, which followed it.

As so often happens with ‘celebrity quiz shows’ the level of the questions is dumbed down so far that they hold no challenge for viewers at home and therefore make the hubris of the celebs answering them somewhat embarrassing.

If it was a one off ‘Strictly Special’ on final night it would be instantly, and justifiably, forgettable, however as a series of 12 it will no doubt grab the early evening audience, thanks to Ranganathan’s popularity.

Leave a Reply