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Archive for the ‘Quiz Show’ Category

Bye, bye, Bob

Bob Holness, the host of the 1980s student quiz Blockbusters died last Friday.

My memories of the show are a little vague, to be honest.  This may or may not be dependent on the fact that the British channels didn’t always work in our house during my youth.  What I do remember is: 1. the mascots, 2. I could never understand why it was two versus one (unfair, surely!) and 3. the dance at the end!

Looking at the video above, I can now add the the questions were easy and the hair styles were massive! Funny what you retain, isn’t it?!

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A chat about quizzes

I was quizzing on Thursday night but I haven’t gotten around to writing up a report yet.  In the meantime, here’s a little something I happened to hear on Wednesday afternoon.

RTÉ Radio One’s Mooney Show featured a guest called Olan McGowan who spoke about his experience as a question writer on the (short-lived) Irish version of Who Wants to be a Millionaire. He also discussed some funny incidents from the world of tv/radio quizzing.

Have a listen here:

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Dear readers, sorry if I have been a bit sparing with the blog posts in the last week.  I have been busy preparing for the start of a new quiz show I am hosting on Claremorris Community Radio.  It’s called After the Fact and it’s broadcast on Thursday evenings at 7pm.

The first episode went out last Thursday and it’s now available online via the Claremorrisfm account on mixcloud.com.  Alas, I haven’t yet found a way of embedding mixcloud files directly into this site so the best I can do is point you in the direction of the specific programme. I hope you enjoy it!

Listen here: www.mixcloud.com/claremorrisfm/after-the-fact-alcohol/

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"Your starter for 10..."

Last weekend, Claremorris Communiy Radio, the volunteer-run station on which I host a small show, held a 48-hour* Broadcastathon to raise funds to help meet its ongoing costs.  As part of this unique (and, I have to say, fun-filled) event, I was invited by Andrew Newman, the presenter of the Classic Sounds show, to join him on-air and test his knowledge of all music (classical, that is).

The show itself took place between 10pm and midnight on Friday last, so we were getting a bit giddy by the end.  Andrew said it was weird to be broadcasting in the dark.  To me it was reminiscent of late nights cramming with friends before college exams. You try and stay focused and do the work but the novelty of the situation leads to distraction.

That being said, I think it made for good radio! Check it out below:

http://soundcloud.com/jhnolan/claremorris-classical-quiz

* If you add on the final, hour-long ‘wrap’ show, it actually lasted 49 hours.

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Buried deep within the press release announcing TV3’s new Autumn/Winter schedule is the news that Ireland’s third television channel is bringing us a local version of famous British uber-quiz Mastermind.

Ok, I admit it.  It’s not exactly hidden.  It’s just that it took me four days to become aware of the news.

Further details on the show are thin on the ground at the moment.  All we do know is that former Fine Gael TD, Minister for Justice and answer to a famous quiz question, Nora Owen, will take on the role of being Ireland’s John Humphrys.

So little else turns up when one enters “Mastermind Ireland” into google that I must believe (hope) that the show’s production is still some weeks away.  There’s no sign of any contestants being recruiting just yet.  Whenever any further info comes to light, I’ll be sure to get it up onto this site.

I’m quite excited about this.  It’ll be great to have a serious, weekly quiz on our TV screens.  Heck, maybe it’ll leap into popular culture and become one of those shows discussed the morning after at water coolers and 11am breaks? For this week, at least, we can dream…

PS I’ve been reminded that I actually discussed this very idea on national radio once. 🙂 Check out the post ‘Trivia with Tubridy‘.

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My own copy of a Peter Murphy quiz book

The death occurred on Friday last of Peter Murphy.  He was 88.  Some remember him as the the host of Landmark, RTÉ‘s farming programme, which ran from the 1960s to the 1980s.  Others remember him as the host of Cross Country Quiz, a county-versus-county quiz on Irish TV.  Yet more will have one of his 14 published quiz books on their shelves.  But, for me, he was the man who compiled the Quizword in the Sunday Independent for the past 20 years.

Quizword, a crossword whose clues are trivia questions, is a shared passion for me, my mother and, on the other side of the fence, my father-in-law.  Every Sunday for the past indefinable number of years, I have assisted one with its completion and then done my best to give gentle hints to the other later on in the day.  I can only hope that the ‘Sindo’ will keep it going but the worry persists that, even if they do, it will never be the same.

Peter Murphy only took up creating the Quizword after he had retired from a very active life as both a farming organiser (with Macra na Feirme and the IFA) and TV and radio star.  A noted public speaker in his youth, he became the voice of authority on all things trivia after landing the role as host of Cross Country Quiz, the most popular quiz program on RTÉ, Ireland’s sole TV station at the time.

From that point on, he was always willing to travel the byroads and highways of Ireland, acting as guest quiz master for almost every event that contacted him and asked.

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Secret Fortune is a BBC/National Lottery game show that is broadcast on BBC One, on Saturday evenings.  Donegal native Paddy Duffy is a writer, working on the second series of the show.

I’ve written previously about my dream to someday invent the next Who Wants to be a Millionaire (and thus make my fortune).  With this long-standing ambition in place, you’ll guess how excited I was to find out that Paddy Duffy, an old friend and fellow alumnus of the NUI Galway Quiz Society, is currently a question writer on UK quiz show Secret Fortune. I had a little chat with Paddy last week and asked him to tell us all about it.

I admitted to Paddy that I hadn’t been too aware of Secret Fortune. I tend to change channel whenever I hear that a program related to the lottery (any of them) is coming on next. How does it work?

“So, as you do know, it’s in sync in with the National Lottery. People can win anything from £100 to £100,000, with 24 monetary values inside 24 envelopes.”

I interrupted at this point.  This sounds awfully like another, well-known TV show that I hate…

“Well the (prima facie) closeness to Deal Or No Deal is definitely something to be overcome, but the similarity begins and ends with numbers and opening things, thankfully!” (more…)

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Just a quick diversion from our normal fare.  As the video’s subtitle succinctly puts it, “IBM’s Watson supercomputer destroys all humans in Jeopardy.”

I, for one, welcome our new computer overlords

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Trivia talk

Trivia

Trivia is a six-part comedy-drama series, which starts on RTÉ One on February 3.  In the build-up to the first episode, I had a chat with writer Damien Owens about the show and his own quiz experiences.

Damien Owens is a writer of many talents.  The author of four published books, he even writes Chick Lit under a cunningly ambiguous pseudonym.  Trivia, which explores the relationships between the four members of a table quiz team, is his first TV show.

So what gave him the idea for the show?

“I had the idea for the lead character, Lawrence, first. He’s basically just an exaggerated version of myself. He’s obsessed with learning trivia.  I wanted him to have a crazy goal and I hit upon the idea that he’d want to win the table quiz in his local pub for 52 weeks in a row – a full year.  No-one else even knows he’s doing it but, to him, it’s the most important thing in the world.”

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Teresa Lowe on The Late Late ShowOn Friday night, Theresa Lowe, the former host of RTÉ quiz show Where in the World?, appeared on The Late Late Show with her husband, pianist and former political candidate, Frank McNamara.  This appearance had a direct effect on this site as over 400 people visited between 9.30pm and midnight, brought here by this post.

Great for tablequiz.net, to be sure, but what lies behind this surge in interest?

Well, thanks to the WordPress system’s thorough statistics, we can actually see what search engine terms lead people to wash up on the site.

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