It was an unwelcome and peculiar moment when I switched on to ITV last Saturday evening. Usually, I’d expect to be greeted with a old repeat of You’ve Been Framed or one of those quirky new game shows hosted by Davina McCall that involves running through different rooms whilst having fifty pound notes stuffed in various body orifices. Instead, I was faced with a man from Bolton, what looked like a handful of transvestites and a programme that I can only describe as an amalgamation of Blind Date and The Only Way is Essex. I know, I know. I’m incredibly late jumping on the bandwagon. One of the biggest game shows of last year, Take Me Out regularly reached 5 million viewers and became the twitter trend of Saturday nights. So am I wrong in saying that I just don’t get it?
In my very humble opinion, this show is less like car crash telly and more like a pile up on the M6. Some of the ‘women’ could easily audition for a stint in The Ladyboys of Bankok and the men seem to lack both personality and brains.(Hardly a winning combination.) The premise of the show is that one single man, usually still living with his Mum, has to try and impress thirty single women. Each woman has a light which she can turn off if she is unimpressed by the man (and then curse herself when she later finds out he’s the son of a millionaire.) So far, so awful.
If that wasn’t bad enough, Patrick ‘I used to be funny’ McGuiness attempts to enhance the experience with his own kooky use of vocabulary. ‘Let the shepherds see the pie!’ he yells, grinning like he’s mentally ill. ‘Let the belly see the button!’ Let the onion see the bhaji!’ ‘Let the plum see the jam!’ BY GOD, PADDY, WE GET THE POINT. Whilst those with an average IQ of 12 might think that shouting ‘No likey, no lighty’ is part of some incredibly witty dialogue, I’m not impressed. You came up with something that rhymes, Paddy? Congratulations. I’m sure there are toddlers out there who have been more creative with language.
As well as the fact that this ‘entertainment’ programme is utter drivel, it clearly isn’t doing anything for feminism either. A gaggle of desperate women fluttering their false eyelashes in order to get picked for a date? I bet Emmeline Pankhurst is spinning furiously in her grave at this shambles! And wait, there’s more. Whilst the male’s application form invites them to reveal their educational qualifications, the female’s simply asks whether they have any ‘special talents’ they would like to share. You know, like the ability to be able to roll your tongue or look good in a bikini. A programme consisting of cheap gags, arrogant men and blatant sexism? Needless to say, for me it’s more of a case of no likey, no watchy.