Weaver's Week 2010-01-03

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For our review of 2009, we're going to start with the most-watched game show and work our way down the ratings lists, channel by channel and (roughly) programme by programme. Which means we begin with the nation's favourite button, and a story that's developed since the last Week.

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The X Factor has always come in for two kinds of criticism. One sort came from game show critics, who found the show's structure to be gratuituously long-winded, too concentrated on the fake battle between the judges, and buried any actual talent beneath about ten million layers of nonsense. The other criticism came from music aficionados, who reckoned that the viewers were trained to go out and buy the one souvenir single at the end of the series, and not to appreciate popular music on its own merits.

This year's show moved the results programme from late on Saturday evening to Sunday night, and (whether by accident or design) addressed many of the latter criticisms. Many already-popular performers were invited onto the programme, where they would mime to their current release and lend some sort of stardust to proceedings. As the series progressed, two things became clear. First, this was turning into the new Top of the Pops, bringing the hits of the day to a massive audience. And second, the viewing public was responding to what they saw – popular performers singing quality songs saw them charge up the singles chart, mediocre performers of dubious cover versions found rewards harder to come by.

At the end of the series, the public voted for a winner, and the winner's song was released. Keeping with the show's established tradition, the single was a mediocre version of a familiar song (this time, "The climb", made famous by Miley Cyrus about six months ago), complete with gratuitous key-change, needless choir, and more auto-tune than is healthy. The tradition of this souvenir being the biggest-selling in its week of release was subverted by an online campaign, resulting in a moderately-obscure song from the early 1990s outselling it.

Some other commentators have said that this was an "idiotic" stunt, as all the participants have signed up to the taste of the man behind the campaign. We're not actually seeing this point – there's little difference between 500,000 people following some bloke off of the interwebs and 450,000 following the fashion set by Mr. Cowell off the telly. Neither group is buying their chosen song on its musical merits – the Cowell fans are associating the song with the series they've watched, the opposition are promoting their song as a totem against everything Mr. Cowell stands for.

The game show aspect remained buried under piles of other slush. More than ever, the aspiring talents were relegated to a supporting role on their own show, eclipsed by the guests and by the incessant bickering between the judges. Until the final weeks, the majority of attention fell on one act notable for its mediocrity, showing that there wasn't much talent left to go around.

Maybe all the good performers had been swept up by Britain's Got Talent. The only difference between this show and The X Factor was in the actual performances: not everyone on Talent was a singer. The biggest phenomenon to come out of the show was a singer – Susan Boyle was hyped to become a mass-appeal sensation, signed to Simon Cowell's label, landed her own one-off show on ITV, and sold a million copies of her album in about five minutes flat. She didn't win the show, mind...

Britain's Got Talent ITV's defining image: Susan Boyle.

Dancing on Ice is another ratings banker; this year's series never quite caught the public imagination, especially after Tucker Jenkins had stopped performing. The autumn run of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! also boosts the channel's popularity, though this year's might be best remembered for the Great British Public visiting their odium against Katie "Jordan" Price, and for the looming court appearance of two contenders on animal cruelty charges.

ITV's obsession with celebrity continues, with both Mr and Mrs and Family Fortunes airing only in versions starring people already known to the television audience. The celebrity gubbins spread to Antan Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway, with only the show's first element starring a member of the public, as opposed to minor celebs or a huge pile of prizes. Celebs were cooking on Hell's Kitchen, and went up against fit individuals on Beat the Star with Vernon Kay – production moved to London, the number of games was reduced, and the programme felt less of a spectacle than last year. Ladette to Lady also came back, though we have no idea why.

We were glad to see The Krypton Factor return, in a form that was both familiar to those of us who remember the original, and was attractive enough for new viewers. Who Wants to be a Millionaire continued its sporadic journey through the schedules, coming to rest on Tuesday evenings. Chris Tarrant also appeared on The Colour of Money, an entirely simple guessing game. Pick a colour. Pick a number between 1 and 20. If the number you're thinking of is no larger than the number under the colour, count it to your score. And if your score reaches a pre-determined target within ten guesses, you win. So simple, even Chris Tarrant can't mess it up. No, messing it up is a job best left to the ITV Presentation Department, who put together over-slick nonsense, gratuitous sob stories, and booked a 15-minute show for a 35-minute slot.

The Colour of Money Set of the year, clearly.

Psychological pressure (stress tests and getting them to jog a mile) was applied to the contestants, on the flimsy pretext that the show might be a bit stressful. Even though this is an entirely transparent load of nonsense, it hasn't stopped Alton Towers from introducing a similar technique for one of their new rides next season. ITV confidently predicted that, after eighteen months in development, this would be The Next Big Thing, complete with imposing capital letters. The viewing public took one look, said "ooh, pretty colours", and turned off to something less dull, like that nice Neil Oliver on BBC2. So bad was this programme that ITV didn't even bother to burn off the final episode last week, replacing it with some programme about herbs. The Cube fared somewhat better, convincing people that it's easy to accomplish some moderately difficult physical and mental tasks, while being gently encouraged by Phillip Schofield.

The daytime schedule still revolved around Dickinson's Real Deal and Golden Balls, but there were other shows in the 5pm slot – cookery show Britain's Best Dish returned, and there was the new commission Taste the Nation. Divided was a neat little quiz, adequately hosted by Andrew Castle, inviting people to build a pot, then split it into three unequal parts. It'll be back in the new year, as will The Chase, pitting a team of amateur quizzers against some seasoned and battle-harden professionals. We won't be seeing a new run of The Fuse, which took half-an-hour to get going before coming to life in the final moments. Mercifully, we won't see any more episodes of For the Rest of Your Life, many episodes of that zeeb-fest emerged in the summer as cheap filler.

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Earlier in the autumn, ITV was responsible for a spoiling tactic against Strictly Come Dancing. "It's so unfair that two of the top shows are on at the same time," bleated Cowell's lackies, a call eagerly amplified by the echo-chamber of the populist press who will hate anything if the money's right, especially the BBC. Strictly scored one own-goal this year, replacing the experienced Arlene Phillips with former champion Alesha Dixon, who clearly lacked Phillips's expertise. The show had one bright idea, to abolish its pre-recorded Sunday results show, so that it could run one huge programme across the heart of BBC1's Saturday schedules. Even so, ten million viewers were regularly watching the show across BBC1 and BBC-HD, proving that it was still exciting.

The Apprentice took the next two positions on BBC1's most popular list, with both the regular series and a Comic Relief special. Two days after the shows ended, host Alan Sugar was appointed to the government's Enterprise Czarship, a position that's given him a unique opportunity to comment on the length and depth of the recession. As it's a political post, Mr. Sugar won't be allowed to appear in an entertainment show until after next year's election. Well, he won't be allowed to appear in a show claiming to be entertainment – we've never actually been entertained by his bullying.

Let's Dance for Comic Relief was a freestyle celebrity dance show, perhaps foreshadowing the civilian version (So You Think You Can Dance) in the new year. Celebrities also took part in the only editions of Mastermind on BBC1 this year, and in the annual Masterchef competition. They also went to Argentina, to compete on the Total Wipeout course. The assault course proved to be the biggest new show of the year for BBC1, proving that the country likes nothing more than to see respectable people trying – and failing – to get from A to B without falling in the water. Amanda Byram asks inane questions of the contestants, and Richard Hammond provides the commentary from a studio in the UK.

Total Wipeout BBC1's defining image of this year, from Total Wipeout.

Many of BBC1's regular shows were present and correct – In It to Win It combined well with Total Wipeout in a double-bill of entirely unchallenging shows. One Versus One Hundred had its annual run, and was joined on the lottery bench by Guesstimation, in which contestants were invited to suggest the answers to questions they weren't expected to know. It's not expected to return next year, we'd far sooner see another series of Who Dares Wins. Have I Got News for You pulled in its biggest audience for some years in a week when the country went potty over MPs claiming for duck houses in their belfries; they've also run a clip of Czar Sugar commenting on the length and depth of the recession. We're not convinced that QI is quite right for BBC1 – it did surprisingly poorly in the spring, and hasn't settled in its new Thursday night slot, which might explain why it emerges on Fridays now.

BBC1's biggest success was with the Eurovision Song Contest. Graham Norton took over commentary duties, and managed to respect the night's entertainment far more than the dismissive nonsense peddled for so many years by his predecessor. The improvement stretched to the national selection competition – while the proceedings on Your Country Needs You were little different from the X Factor template, they lasted more than one night, showing the corporation was at least trying.

Perhaps the biggest failure was in the other light entertainment shows they tried in the first half of the year. Tonight's the Night, hosted by John Barrowman, tried to turn members of the public into stars; Totally Saturday was a hodge-podge of ideas, all perfectly fine in their own way.For both shows, the whole turned out to be less than the sum of the parts, and the anti-BBC critics in the press lambasted the programmes.

Excluding the children's output (which we'll come to under CBBC), BBC1 daytime hasn't been a hotbed of experimentation, with Bargain Hunt and The Weakest Link occupying fixed slots for most of the year. We were very much hoping to list Panic Attack as a popular new format enjoyed by people across the nation, but the series only replaced Link for viewers in Northern Ireland. The listener who called Radio Ulster and described host Stephen Nolan as "a fat Roy Walker" was being unfair, because that's no insult.

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Channel 4

2009 marked the beginning of the end for the Big Brother franchise. Celebrity Big Brother was the channel's most-viewed game show of the year; both this and the regular version peaked on their opening nights, and never recovered lost ground. We really struggled to remember the winner of the celebrity version, even though she's already a game show legend. Big Brother will come to an end in September 2010, and we wonder just how many people will miss it.

Come Dine with Me has carved out something of a niche over its life, and has finally found its place – two runs of prime-time episodes, some daytime programmes in the attractive 5pm slot, and repeats every Sunday on More4 helping that channel to cover its costs. We wonder if any show can remain cool when politicians cite it as their favourite programme: can Come Dine With Me survive the curse of Nick Clegg? Channel 4's daytime banker Deal or No Deal has also settled into its niche, and there were new series of Perfect Recall and a revival for Coach Trip after some years in the garage.

Countdown has had a curate's egg of a decade: robbed of its avuncular host Richard Whiteley in 2005, the show went through a pair of hosts called Des, and lost Carol Vorderman in a row over money. Out of the darkness was born a lot of hope: seasoned television anchor Jeff Stelling slipped into the host's chair as though he'd been doing it for years, and Rachael Riley has proven every bit as good as that other woman, and with a lot less of an ego. The booking policy for dictionary corner has skewed younger, to reflect the most successful contestants. And it's been a great year for Countdown contestants, with Kirk Bevins producing the first known perfect game, and Chris Davies turning in the best performance of the series in the grand final.

Countdown Channel 4's faces of the year: Rachael and Jeff.

Budget cuts mean that Channel 4's doing less in the late evening than it was before. A new series of 8 Out of 10 Cats split the Friday night Big Brother shows, and helped the channel to retain a decent audience there. We enjoyed You Have Been Watching, with Charlie Brooker's rants against the rubbish bits of television, and a quiz to make it technically on-topic for us. The Big Food Fight was an entertainment formatted as quiz about food, in that order. Chris Moyles' Quiz Night was a show we liked rather more than we thought we would; it'll be interesting to see if it still works when recorded months in advance. Scrapheap Challenge returned with a series of one-off challenges between Dick Strawbridge and the competing teams. It's different from the previous series, not least because the titular heap didn't feature.

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University Challenge was the big event on BBC2 this year. In January, Corpus Christi Oxford ran up the score against Exeter, when Gail Trimble answered as many starter questions correctly as Exeter scored points in the game. By the end of February, the final pitted Corpus Christi against the University of Manchester, and the BBC's hype machine was out in full force: Trimble the information storage machine, against a side that had crushed all opposition into smithereens but didn't have such a photogenic captain. Over five and a half million viewers saw Manchester take the lead, the Oxford side struggle to hold their own. When all appeared to be lost, Miss Trimble turned on the afterburners and shot her side to victory.

The story didn't end there: there had been confusion over the eligibility of final-year students, who would only be eligible to compete if they were continuing to study at the same institution. It was a rule that encouraged colleges to enrol students on postgraduate sinecures, it was a rule in place for the convenience of the producers, and it was never entirely clear that the rule was properly spelled out to contestants in the first place. Condemning people on the basis of unpublished rules is Kafka's job. The BBC retrospectively said the rule had been broken, and a press release appeared on the website claiming that Corpus Christi had been disqualified. No evidence of this has been presented on the show itself, viewers who only watch University Challenge will not be aware of Manchester's claim to the title. We're still wondering if Exeter's match marked the first time a UC contest has been won by a tennis score.

University Challenge The face of the year on BBC2: Gail Trimble

All this kerfuffle overshadowed a programme that has become frighteningly good this year. After the first round, we totted up and reckoned that nine of the remaining 18 teams had a good chance of reaching the semi-finals. With a new system for the quarter-finals (which we've held off discussing until we understand it, or we have to), the contest will go on well into the new year.

Masterchef also reached its conclusion in the last week of February, and also got over 5.5m viewers – the cookery contest has found a spiritual home at the popular end of the BBC2 schedules, and the final of the Professionals series ranks fifth for the year. In between are two business programmes – the final edition of The Apprentice You're Fired and an episode of Dragons' Den. Spin-offs from all these series have also proven popular – Dragons' Den has had On Tour and webcast versions during 2009, The Apprentice begat a hagiography of Alan Sugar, and there was more cookery in Great British Menu. The Restaurant combined both obsessions, but we note that it's another show to peak with its opening episode. Put Your Menu Where Your Mouth Is was another cookery show, doing reasonable business in the middle of summer. Ready Steady Cook is a constant of the daytime schedules, except when it's taken off for sporting coverage.

BBC2's comedy shows were led by Mock the Week, but Jo Brand levelled an accurate criticism that it's become a bear-pit for the regulars, and they elbow out any other competitor. After a successful one-off last year, Shooting Stars returned for a new series; it proved to be a one-week wonder. Genius transferred from Radio 4. Never Mind the Buzzcocks lost host Simon Amstell, and replaced him with a rotating guest host, almost as if they were trying to be HIGNFY and make Dappy from Ndubz the next Mayor of London. Extended repeats of HIGNFY and QI helped to fill up the hours, as did Strictly's spin-off show. It paired well with Eggheads, helping the civilian show record its biggest audience; Celebrity Eggheads occupied nine days before Christmas.

Mastermind has had an odd year: pushed from pillar to post by the schedulers, the final eventually went out in the height of summer, 41 weeks after the season started. It came back for the autumn in a slightly later slot, opposite Eastenders, and managed to double its audience. Top-level quiz show Battle of the Brains returned for a second series, with a proper audience and a new host. A Question of Genius tried to prove that bits of various other game shows could be re-heated without anyone noticing; they might have got away with it if the show wasn't going out in high-definition. Pointless asked people to find the answers no-one else would think of, and has captured public imagination far more than we thought it would.

Design for Life The best show you didn't watch: Design for Life

Not all prime-time shows were popular. The Speaker was an Election-type programme for young orators, which pulled in lots of celebrity but would have fitted better into a shorter slot. Design for Life showed the genesis of a new product, from inspiration to prototype; School of Saatchi discussed modern art. Both shows were tremendous educations in modern art thinking, which explains why neither attracted any significant audience. In the case of the latter, Mr. Saatchi declined to appear on camera, as if that would make the programme any better.

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After an excellent 2008, the BBC's children's department has continued to make quality shows on a small budget. Blast Lab made science easy for children to follow, and it's for this show – and not some nonsense involving cars – that Richard Hammond has won a BAFTA award. Crisis Control was everything the similarly-named Crisis Command wanted to be, and Bamzooki has returned after a long absence with superb graphics and good game play. Raven's two series filled its niche, Trapped continues to strand five-sixths of its contestants in a creepy tower, and there was a retrospective season for Dick and Dom in Da Bungalow.

Not every commission has done quite so well. There's been nothing obviously chummy to replace Best of Friends, and there's been nothing so quietly educational as ElectionClash tried to tell the world about classical music, but we never got the groove. The most visible shows – going out at 9am on Saturday mornings – fell slightly flat. Who Wants to be a Superhero? suffers from not being all that good to begin with, and Skate Nation stayed too close to the Strictly Come Dancing template for its own good. We missed Undercover Dads, for some reason.

There was a Game Show Zone on BBC1 at 4pm during the autumn, an idea we heartily encourage. The shows themselves included School of Silence (an excuse to get mucky), Wait for It..! (it's The Waiting Game done a bit differently, and lacking something), and Keep Your Enemies Close (which only needs a more spectacular endgame to be brilliant.) The digital channel had Copycats, a show loosely about passing things on.

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Other channels

Channel 5 only had five game shows this year, and the most popular – World's Strongest Man – was a holdover from 2008. Wordplay was an interesting diversion for lunchtimes; unlike Going for Gold, it wasn't obviously built around the call-and-lose contest. Britain's Best Brain had quality challenges and great hosts, but lacked pace. Heads or Tails... well, we'll be reviewing that next week. Yang to the yin.

BBC4 brought us nine more episodes of Only Connect, the toughest quiz on television bar none. We Need Answers took some of the bizarre questions asked by people and got celebrities to answer them, and The Book Quiz returned for a third series. BBC3's contributions to the game show genre were the low-budget Clever v Stupid, the self-explanatory Move Like Michael Jackson, and Young, Dumb and Living Off Mum, a show about spoiled rich brats.

ITV2's game show contribution was mostly spin-offs of shows on the main ITV channel, with Britain's Got Talent, I'm a Celeb, X Factor, and Dancing on Ice all airing in UK and foreign versions. There were a couple of new shows – Celebrity Juice was an ultra-lightweight analysis of fluff and gossip, and Paris Hilton's British Best Friend was a show perplexing in its complexity.

Living has a successful imported format, America's Next Top Model, and a successful spin-off of that format, Britain's Next Top Model. See what they did there? Four Weddings invited brides to critique each other's nuptuals, and Dating in the Dark did exactly what it said on the tin. On sister channel Virgin1, Restaurant in Our Living Room had people setting up an eatery in their own lounge. Really, these titles aren't exactly perplexing. Even Dave's Argumental gives a hint as to what's in the show, though not that it'll turn up on BBC2 before the year's out.

On the radio, I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue appointed guest hosts – Stephen Fry was jovial, Rob Brydon was on song, and Jack Dee sucked the energy out of the show. Guess who got the autumn job; we're idly wondering if Janet Ellis is available for the spring. Just a Minute and The Unbelievable Truth continued, while Quote... Unquote was the cuckoo in the Monday highbrow quiz nest. It's a poor bedfellow for Round Britain Quiz, Counterpoint, and Brain of Britain – the last of these is brewing up for a remarkable set of semi-finals starting tomorrow.

There were other shows – I Guess That's Why They Call It the News spent a month on Radio 4, and proved that The News Quiz was not actually funny any more. The PMQ Show and Beat the Newsmaker were one-offs on Radio 5, Percy Edwards Showdown on Radio 4, and I'm Spartacus brought quizzes back to Radio 2, for one week only.

Thanks to national restrictions, we've not been able to endure shows from RTÉ, such as the All-Ireland Talent Show – one wag suggested that the producers had grabbed the first thirty people on the street and shoved them in front of the cameras. Nor have we seen the new shows on S4C, including choir-of-the-year show Côr Cymru, sports quiz Cwis Meddiant, and competitive farming challenge Fferm Ffactor. We have been able to see the greatest television programme ever to come out of Reading, and Accumulate! set the standard for a simple quiz, well made, and with fun coming out of every frame.

Quiz is Anfield was a perfectly fine show about Liverpool FC, and we hope the champion enjoyed his trip to see the Reds in Europe. Another show on our to-see list is Slips on Viva. We have seen Staraoke on Boomerang, and wished we hadn't. We also saw the show being gently ripped off, Hannah-Oke on the Disney channel, a surpisingly uplifting family show that always ended with someone trying to sing "The climb". People making dubious versions of a recent Miley Cyrus song? This year in game has brought us back to the start.

The ratings

(Readers who don't wish to see the tables may prefer to skip to the Roll of Honour, giving every series winner we know about.)

These tables are compiled from BARB ratings data, and currently go up to 13 December, the night of the X Factor result. We intend to update the tables with final data, on or about 13 January.

The highest single rating for any individual show is given, along with its date of transmission, and audience in millions. A second column gives the audience who saw the same transmission on a +1 channel.


Britain's Got Talent (final)30/0518.29
The X Factor Results (final)13/1216.28
The X Factor21/1114.03
Dancing on Ice (final)22/0311.31
I'm a Celeb21/1110.86
I Dreamed a Dream13/1210.79
Antan Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway Your Money14/027.74
All-Star Mr and Mrs, Miss, or Mr30/057.56
I'm a Celeb Coming Out7/127.53
All-Star Family Fortunes25/107.41
The Cube (first)22/085.85
Beat the Star (first)19/045.59
Hell's Kitchen27/045.53
Who Wants to be a Millionaire?24/014.52
The Krypton Factor (first)1/014.49
The Colour of Money28/024.43
Anonymous (pilot)18/073.87
Ladette to Lady9/063.25
Holiday Showdown Extreme (first)19/052.76


Strictly Come Dancing14/1110.10.263
The Apprentice3/069.76
The Apprentice (Comic Relief)12/038.53
Let's Dance for Comic Relief7/038.44
Eurovision Song Contest16/057.910.115
In It to Win It7/027.81
Total Wipeout7/026.8
Celebrity Mastermind1/016.59
Have I Got News for You22/056.25
One Versus One Hundred (first)28/036.15
Your Country Needs You (final)31/015.610.0038
Celebrity Masterchef9/075.6
The Apprentice The Final Five3/065.06
Guesstimation (first)11/075.05
Total Wipeout Awards4/044.87
Tonight's the Night (first)18/044.69
Totally Saturday (first)6/064.37
Would I Lie to You?31/083.68

(Second column is BBC-HD audience)

Channel 4

Celebrity Big Brother (first)2/015.90
Big Brother (first)4/065.150.317
Come Dine With Me (primetime)17/052.950.399
8 Out of 10 Cats17/072.94
Deal or No Deal2/022.93
Come Dine With Me (daytime)2/022.89
Perfect Recall2/022.17
Coach Trip22/061.69


University Challenge (final)23/025.61
Masterchef (final)26/025.58
The Apprentice You're Fired20/054.43
Dragons' Den26/084.240.093
Masterchef The Professionals (final)22/104.23
The Real Sir Alan11/013.24
Mock the Week24/093.19
Have I Got a Little Bit More News For You30/053.07
Strictly Come Dancing It Takes Two30/113.05
Shooting Stars (first)26/082.96
Great British Menu (final)16/062.73
Dragons' Den On Tour6/092.69
Celebrity Eggheads8/122.63
Never Mind the Buzzcocks15/102.54
Mastermind Children in Need20/112.48
QI XL28/022.31
Have I Got News for You (old)29/082.16
The Restaurant (first)29/102.160.051
Battle of the Brains9/021.79
The Restaurant: Winners' Story7/091.73
The Funny Side of TV Talent6/081.69
Ready Steady Cook2/121.65
Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is (final)29/071.52
Bargain Hunt Famous Finds12/081.19

(Second column is BBC-HD audience)


Britain's Got More Talent (final)30/052.5250.145
Xtra Factor8/112.520.26
Britain's Got More Talent Auditions9/051.740.194
The X Factor (narr rep) (first)23/081.4010.257
America's Got Talent5/061.351
I'm a Celeb Get Me Out of Here Now (last)4/121.303
Britain's Got Talent (narr rep)17/051.2250.442
Pop Idle US (final)22/050.843
Britain's Got Talent: Most Talented6/060.81
I'm a Celeb Best and Worst10/120.806
Paris Hilton's British Best Friend (final)19/030.6330.15
Britain's Got Talent: Best and Worst8/040.616
I'm a Celeb US (first)8/060.561
Hell's Kitchen5/100.517
Celebrity Juice25/020.3730.134

Channel 5

World's Strongest Man (final)2/011.62

More 4

Come Dine With Me21/061.2980.084


Celebrity Big Brother's Big Mouth (first)2/010.852
Big Brother's Big Mouth31/070.636
Jade Goody As Seen on TV26/050.3610.223

Sky One



Mock the Week31/070.5310.14
Have I Got News for You16/020.458
QI XL10/110.4480.261
Never Mind the Buzzcocks8/010.4430.041


Four Weddings3/080.5230.242
America's Next Top Model28/090.4680.1660.021
Britain's Next Top Model6/070.3930.09
Dating in the Dark23/090.230.14
Make Us a Supermodel5/100.135

(Third column counts Living+2)




Blast Lab4/020.307
Beat the Boss29/010.23
Da Dick and Dom Dairies3/100.217
Basil's Game Show24/080.213
Best of Friends30/070.207
Gimme a Break16/040.2
Who Wants to be a Superhero?17/040.193
Hider in the House20/020.185
Richard Hammond's Blast Lab29/060.176


Only Connect (first)13/070.272
The Man Behind the Masquerade2/120.265
The Book Quiz8/020.191
We Need Answers19/050.149


Strictly Come Dancing14/110.263
Dragons' Den2/090.163
Eurovision Song Contest16/050.115
Hole in the Wall12/100.107
The Restaurant12/110.088
Shooting Stars (first)26/080.063
Tonight's the Night23/050.022


Total Wipeout Us05/04, 11/100.231
Ballroom With the B-List5/100.215
Boom Bang-a-Bang15/050.1410.022
The Apprentice (Comic Relief 2007)15/030.132
Strictly Ice Dancing4/090.112
Any Dream Will Do: Winner28/060.103
Masterchef Goes Large10/090.102
When Joseph Met Maria28/060.1

Virgin 1

Who Wants to be a Millionaire?31/100.197
Restaurant In Our Living Room24/090.179




Jungle Run9/060.18


Family Fortunes5/040.166
Takeshi's Castle17/110.145
Who Wants to be a Millionaire?27/020.119
One Versus One Hundred5/080.108
Ninja Warrior07/120.097
Joe Pasquale's Price Is Right Specials07/040.093
Take It Or Leave It05/020.091
8 Out Of 10 Cats28/020.09
Who Wants To Be A Millionaire Celebrit13/080.0880.026
Auntie's New Bloomers17/050.0830.038
The Crystal Maze10/020.082
Auntie's Cracking New Bloomers30/040.079
Strike It Rich13/080.079
Auntie's Bloomers: More Auntie's Bloom17/050.078
In It To Win It11/060.077
Auntie's Smashing New Bloomers01/050.073
Roy Walker's Tv Bloomers12/040.073
Weakest Link Celebrity07/030.072
Auntie's Smalls05/080.071
The Weakest Link25/100.071
Britain's Worst...18/010.07
Auntie's Bloomers19/040.063
Wheel Of Fortune19/070.062
Auntie's Brand New Bloomers16/070.06
Auntie's All New Christmas Bloomers23/040.0570.022
Auntie's Bloomers: Hall Of Blame04/050.056
Distraction Us05/060.049


World's Strongest Man4/010.1510.037



Discovery Real Time

Come Dine With Me5/060.108


Winning Streak Dream Ticket28/020.081
The All-Ireland Talent Show1/030.045
Celebrity Bainisteoir (final)10/050.034
The Big Money Game13/060.033

(UK viewers only)

Living 2

Dirty Dancing The Time of Your Life19/090.0720.017


Masterchef Goes Large6/030.069
Eating with the Enemy25/030.046

Discovery Science



Art Race13/110.053
What the Dickens14/040.01

Bravo 2

Takeshi Extreme19/050.05


Mastermind Plant Cymru17/090.043
Bwrw'r Bar13/020.039
Fferm Ffactor8/120.039
Can i Gymru1/030.035
Cor Cymru7/030.035
Perfect Recall17/020.028


The Sack Race4/090.03

Men and Motors

Elvis has Just Left the Building27/060.017

The Roll of Honour

(All results as transmitted are final)

Celebrity Big Brother – Ulrika Jonsson
Big Brother – Sophie Reade

Brain of Britain – Geoff Thomas

Countdown (Championship of Champions) – Steven Briers
(June) – Kirk Bevins
(December) – Chris Davies

Your Country Needs You – Jade Ewen

University Challenge – Corpus Christi Oxford (Gail Trimble, Sam Kay, James Marsden, Lauren Schwartzman, Mark Hamid)

Sportspeople of the Year – Manchester University (Matthew Yeo, Henry Pertinez, Reuben Roy, Simon Baker)

Còcaire nan Còcairan – (February) Donald MacKay
(December) – Seonag Smith

Masterchef – Mat Follas
Celebrity Masterchef – Jayne Middlemiss
Masterchef The Professionals – Steve Groves

Cân i Gymru – Elfed Morgan Morris and Lowri Watcyn Roberts, performing "Gofidiau"

The Krypton Factor – Aaron Bell

The Sorcerer's Apprentice – (spring term) Elizabeth
(autumn term) Rebecca Short

The All-Ireland Talent Show – The Mulkerrin Brothers

Let's Dance for Comic Relief – Robert Webb

Going for Gold – Iwan

Dancing on Ice – Ray Quinn

Accumulate! – Kthxbai (Steve Clark, Alice, Jenny)

Cor Cymru – Choir: Ysgol Gerdd Ceredigion
Conductor: Sioned James: Côrdydd

Pen Campau – Ysgol Gyfun Bro Morgannwg, Barry

Cwis Meddiant – Gorseinon RFC

Shipwrecked – Greg Jones

Celebrity Bainisteoir – Derek Davis / Glasdrumman GAA

Eurovision Song Contest – NRK, represented by "Fairytale" (music / lyric / performance: Alexander Rybak)
Junior Eurovision – AVRO, represented by "Click clack" (music / lyric / performance: Ralf Mackenbach)

Tonight's the Night (Workplace Wonders) – Pimlico Plumbers

Mastermind – Nancy Dickmann

Counterpoint – David Roy

Knowitalls – Brian's Team (John Jones, Brian Durand and Frank Murray)

Only Connect – Rugby Boys (Richard Parnell, Gary Dermody, Mark Labbett)

Skate Nation – Rapid Rollers

Round Britain Quiz – Wales (Patrick Hannan, Peter Stead)

Design for Life – Ilsa Parry

I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! – Gino D'Acampo

The X Factor – Joe McElderry and Simon Cowell

School of Saatchi – Eugenie Scrase

Fferm Ffactor – Aled Rees

Britain's Best Brain – Matt Clancy

The Restaurant – JJ Goodman and James Hopkins

Move Like Michael Jackson: Animaniacs

Strictly Come Dancing – Chris Hollins

And that's all for the old year. We'll be reviewing Heads or Tails next week, and watching (or dodging) Celebrity Big Brother (C4, from Sunday), Only Connect (BBC4, Monday), Raven (CBBC, Tuesday), The Krypton Factor (ITV, Tuesday), and Jump Nation (BBC2, Saturday).

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