Gameshows from the age of the kipper tie return to screen
The shows, long since dumped by modern schedulers in favour of slicker alternatives with glossy sets and big-money prizes, are to be revived on screen next month.
But gone are original hosts such as Jim Bowen, Nicholas Parsons and Bruce Forsyth. Instead, the well-worn catchphrases, including "look at what you could have won" and "come on down", will be uttered by the ubiquitous TV duo Ant and Dec, who are to front all the shows.
Each of the programmes will return for one night only as part of the celebrations to mark the 50th anniversary of ITV. If they prove popular enough, there is the prospect or a more permanent return for some of the shows.
Another four classic programmes will return, although ITV1 bosses have not yet finalised which of the shows will be back. However, they are understood to be considering The Golden Shot, where members of the public would direct the firing of a crossbow with cries of "up a bit, left a bit, fire!", and Play Your Cards Right.
Ant & Dec's Gameshow Marathon, as the series will be called, is the latest triumph for nostalgia TV which has recently seen the return of Doctor Who, Ask the Family and Roobarb and Custard. Long-running BBC drama Dixon of Dock Green was also brought back for a Radio 4 series.
Richard Holloway of TalkbackThames, who is executive producer of the gameshow series and worked on many of the original shows, said: "Fashions, tastes in presenters and technology all change, but the endearing qualities of these shows means they have enduring appeal. I'm delighted that ITV are celebrating these shows, but also that they have the insight to realise that these formats with the right treatment may not just be nostalgic but relevant to today's audiences."
Claudia Rosencrantz, ITV controller of entertainment, said: "The series is a nostalgic look back, with a modern twist provided by two of the biggest current stars on TV."
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