The Wave



Rylan Clark-Neal


Kerri-Anne Payne


Primal Media for W, 15 to 19 January 2018 (10 episodes in 1 series)


Crashing into the office came this press release from UKTV:

"The Wave mixes sun, sea, surf...and stacks of cash. But instead of packing sunscreen, competitors must pack their swimmers as Rylan sends them off in pairs to battle it out on the Atlantic coast of Portugal in an effort to win the booty.
"Rylan stays firmly on the shore with one half of the pair, while the other braves the Atlantic surf and puts their fate in the hands of the elements as they attempt to reach a series of pontoons further and further out to sea. Could the waves help or hinder their race to glory?
"Waiting on each pontoon is a this-or-that question: get it right, then money goes in the swimmer's swag bag. But get it wrong, pebbles go into the bag instead... what could possibly go wrong?
"For added pressure, they only win the money if the swimmer makes it back to their partner on the shore in time. Nothing like a relaxing day at the beach. "

On the beach, Rylan asks the other player questions to increase the amount of time available. He also offers to sell assistance to the swimmer - £500 could be cheap for a pair of flippers.

The Wave Buoy oh buoy oh buoy.

All of this looked good on paper, but didn't translate well to the screen. Rylan worked well with the players, the questions were designed to encourage debate, and the final dash for the beach could be tense.

But the pace was slow, and sea mist made the backdrop dull and grey, and the programme never felt urgent or important. The show had some entertainment value, but we didn't think it worked every night across the week.

Theme music

Nick Foster composed a score for the full show.

Web links

Official site


The Wave Keri-Anne Payne, the swimming supervisor.

See also

Weaver's Week review


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