This was a hit show at the Edinburgh Fringe and transferred well to TV.
What was good about it?
• The Shooting Stars spirit of surreal madness with a cheap set, silly jingles, daft captions and nonsensical questions.
• As celebrity guests, Germaine Greer and Michael Rosen were a cut above the soap stars and Big Brother rejects other game shows attract. They entered into the spirit of things without showing off or being fazed by the eccentricity of it all.
• Questions such as “Let’s see how well read Germaine Greer is. What is Dennis the Menace’s dog called?” and “Is Germaine Greer the one who threw herself in front of the racehorse?”
• Tim Key, who asked the texted-in questions in a tiny chair while Mark Watson did the introductions and Alex Horne acted like a bewildered boffin, looking after the rules and graphics. Kay stood out as the deadpan nerd. We loved his “Well done, dearie” and “We’re not all beasts” to Germaine. But having three comics all trying to muscle in on the laughs, made it a little disorganised.
What was bad about it?
• Mark Watson struggled as a host – he’s far funnier as a panellist offering off-the-cuff remarks.
• The too lengthy Physical Challenge – “Who’s better at reading, men or women?” – in which the contestants had to read from various books with the size of text decreasing.