I love the Challenge Channel on Freeview Channel 46. It broadcasts repeats of Bullseye on a regular basis, often back to back. There are plenty of shows to choose from as 15 series were produced. It is great!
The host, Jim Bowen (voted the Most Popular Game Show host last month in an online poll) is a proper legend. Bullseye was his show and it is great to look back and re-live those memories of Sunday tea time viewing thirty years ago. After all as Jim says “You can’t beat a bit of Bully.”
A classic episode was witnessed the other day. In the final round the first couple were a bloke, who had a delicious Bobby Charlton hair cut (circa 1972); we are talking proper comb-over job. The other contestant was in fact his daughter. In total contrast she had a mass of blonde hair, styled in a tightly permed mullet. Not a great style combo, but both were pretty handy dart throwers.
Fair play, they did well and won the best part of £600 in the quiz rounds. They then went on to scoop a shed load of stuff on Bully’s Prize Board, namely a washing machine, a toasted sandwich maker, a hostess trolley and an telephone answer machine. This last high tech device was the size of a shoe box.
Happy with their winnings the leading pair declined the offer from Jim to gamble their prize haul and go for the Star Prize. They had a great result in terms of cash and prizes won, so it seemed a prudent move not to blow the lot in a dash at the Star Prize.
In these situations whenever the first pair of contestants decline the chance of trying for the Star Prize, the second pair of players are invited back to have a go at the big win. So up step Kevin and Jack from Barrow in Furness. They previously managed to win £550, which probably could pay the price for a terraced house in their home town back then . They were not tempted to wager their cash, that they could hit 101 or more with 6 darts.
So here was a rare event, up steps the the third couple with a chance of something big after being knocked out in Round 1. Steve and Trish had not had a great day so far and had only managed to win to £80 earlier in the show. That was all they had to hand back to Jim and gamble with in order to have a pop at the Star Prize.
The Star Prize was always not to be sniffed at. It could be a decent long haul family holiday, or a brand new car hidden behind a big, red velvet curtain in the TV studio.
This prize would not be revealed till the end of the show, but it was a “no brainer” decision to make for this last couple. They had to go for it. Throw 6 darts and get a combined score of 101 or more. Job done.
Trish looked like she could hold her own in a bar fight and was a bit of a unit, truth be told. She gritted her teeth and bowled up to the oche and proceeded to chuck 22 with her 3 arrows. Not a great start, but she was the “non-dart player”, so all was not lost.
Up steps hubby Steve, the so called dart player, who hits treble 19 with his first dart and lands on single 16 with the next. This means that with Trish’s score of 22 added to his two darts things are looking great.
With a total of 95, the man of the moment only has to get 6 or more with his last dart! Happy Days!
Now if you look at the board what would you do? Aim left, surely? As anything will do 12 through to 19. Virtually half the board to aim at – it is not a tricky throw at all.
Yet what does Steve hit? THREE!!!! Are you sure? A collective gasp is heard from the studio audience off camera. Single 3! Steve loses the £80 won previously and the Star Prize also slips from his grasp. Blood drains from his face. In close up you can see it has dawned on him. Yes Steve, your other half could have done better than that with one dart.
Trish slowly hands back the cash to Jim, our ever diplomatic host. It hurts, you can see it in her eyes. Mind you, it is water off a duck’s back to Jim, who puts his arms around the losing couple and bellows “Let’s see what you would have won!”
Diminutive Steve stands still, ashen faced, anticipating a beating from the wife when he gets home to Rochdale. The curtain is drawn back to reveal the Star Prize. It is a blinking speed boat as well – loving it !! Trish does not look a happy bunny!