« Topics
1234...555657
tps170004 posts since 11 Aug 2018 new member
Hi all, new here. I have been a fan of the CM since I was a teenager, and I found this forum very interesting and very informative. I didn’t know anything about this TV show (and there was no internet back then) but I accidentally discovered it one day on TV and from then on I was always watching. Although now I understand that a lot of context was lost in translation – ever some of Richard’s jokes. The subtitles could not cover everything and I could not understand English back then.

In regards to the new series, I just wanted to give my opinion. I liked it, but unfortunately I didn’t really love it. And it is not because I am older, as the old series is still amazing even today. There is something not right about the new one, although I cannot exactly put my finger on why this is.

To me, the biggest problem I think is that the new series mocks itself far too much. “if you are still watching”, “is a game of people running around in jumpsuits still relevant”, “the presenter is not what the viewers wanted”, “we give rubbish prizes”, “the sets are fake” etc. I know it is supposed to be modern British humour, but somehow it doesn’t work for me – it is annoying and it is cheapening the show. The old series always respected itself and the presenters lived the experience rather than making fun of it.

Second problem is that we are constantly reminded that this is just a TV show. The original gave the impression that 6 crazy people and their host were running around alone, in jungles and in South American territories, in the ocean and in space within a single hour. No other human was perceivable to the viewer, and the continuity was respected to the point where Richard gave instructions on how to get the locked-in people back and had to help the contestants with the safety equipment. To the (not very attentive) viewer, it gave the impression of a one-hour film, something like Indiana Jones combined with Star Wars. On the contrary, the new series constantly reminds us that this is just a TV game show. The editing is terrible: people laughing in one frame and dead serious in the next frame. Missing seconds of the games. People magically getting safety equipment on. The dialogues between the host and the contestants are so heavily edited that it seems like many short phrases badly joined together, no spontaneous reactions from people. Richard refusing to go to the next zone with the contestants. The locked-in contestants magically appearing back. And Richard’s dialogues are mostly scripted, to the point that on occasions he does not answer to what the contestants are saying but he continues with his written script (see initial interaction with Kelly Holmes for example).

Don’t get me wrong, I generally love Richard Ayoade. But I am not persuaded that he is the most appropriate presenter for this. First of all, this program is an adventure and not a comedy. Also, a more spontaneous and a bit chattier presenter would have been more appropriate in my opinion. Richard O’Brien added to the entertainment with his spontaneous reactions to the contestants failures (“oh come on girl”, “go-go-go don’t think about it”, “come here I will show you how to press U3” etc.).

On the positive side:
- Great sets, much respect to the original
- Richard A. manages to maintain more or less the balance between mocking the failures and not being rude. Richard O’B had this nailed down. Ed was too nice.
- The editing of the games themselves is better than the originals IMO. Sometimes the original games were just shown as a series of close-up shots of various objects and people’s faces, and it was not allowing the viewer to understand and participate in the game. I felt like the contestants outside the room, when the computer didn’t give them a good shot.
tps170004 posts since 11 Aug 2018 new member
And another mistake of the new series in comparison to the old series (which I forgot to mention):

The games are generally well designed, apart from one particular aspect: in 99% of the cases, it is immediately obvious to the contestant what they have to do. I can only think of a very small number of games that were not immediately giving away what has to be done. And even during these ones, Richard A. gave the clue away (like: connect the cable to the phone, or what tool do you need to get the crystal?).

In the original, a big number of games were intelligent in the sense that it was not so obvious what needed to be done and they even contained red herrings. Richard and Ed sometimes helped a bit ("you see what you have to do?") but in other occasions they let the game continue. And even when they were giving small clues, people still didn’t get it. The difficulty in understanding what the game was about is IMO what created a lot of the funny moments: it was hilarious to see the blank, seemingly unintelligent faces of the contestants who didn’t get it. Moments I can think of: “press U3”, “this tap? NO. This one? NO”, the guy who could not figure out that he had to use the cogs (and Richard not giving anything away), the guy that was moving the poor skeleton and the guy that ripped out all the boats in the boat equation game.
Last edited by tps17000 on 11 August 2018 12:09pm - 2 times in total
adamiow159 posts since 2 Jul 2006
I think Richard has improved from series 1 to series 2. In recent episodes, he was talking to the camera about the progress of the game and the ineptitude of the contestants much like Richard O'Brien and has generally been much more natural. However, with it now being series 2, some of the comments should have been knocked on the head by now - no need to talk about editing, committing to teleport etc.
1
Warbler gave kudos
Brekkie30,005 posts since 4 Jan 2003 Recently warned
HTV Wales Wales Today
Was always going to be a tough ask reviving this but on the whole I think Richard is brilliant as his style works, and I've no issue with it all being a bit tongue in cheek and breaking the 4th role.

The only two things I really don't like are firstly the reduction to 10 games. They could easily get 12 in by cutting down the introductions and having a couple of 2min games instead of 3 min.

The second is the teams knowing each other. I think cutting to 5 was the right move but I'm hating how on every lock in teams are buying out straight away, even when they only have 1-2 crystals. I don't think that would happen with strangers.
Shouldn't that have been posted in the "John Logie Baird has Invented Television" thread?
tps170004 posts since 11 Aug 2018 new member
I think Richard has improved from series 1 to series 2. In recent episodes, he was talking to the camera about the progress of the game and the ineptitude of the contestants much like Richard O'Brien and has generally been much more natural.


Yes I also noticed during the last episode that he was providing real-time commentary of the ongoing game. I am not persuaded that he was very good in this, but at least it shows he is making an effort. I have only seen him in the "IT crowd" before, where people hated his performance at first but he dramatically improved and he ended up the favourite character of the show. Quite impressive. But acting / reading a script is different than presenting / having to think yourself of things to say.

But even if I am trying to pick on his performance I cannot help but like him, he seems like a very likable person. In my opinion he just needed to enhance a bit what he is saying, and not only repeating the usual phrases like “tuck in”, “take the hand”, “follow the hand”, “how do you feel” etc. Occasionally, some of his one-liners are really good – although I don’t know if he says them in real-time or if some voice overs are added later.

Does anyone know if there is any chance for a series 3? Or it is confirmed that they will not do another series?
Brekkie30,005 posts since 4 Jan 2003 Recently warned
HTV Wales Wales Today
It hasn't rated as well as anyone hoped but then with some shows (though not usually the ones I like) C4 will keep renewing regardless. Really is on the bubble though my gut says it'll get another run, though must admit for me it has gone from watching 48 hrs in advance to watching as broadcast to watching on catch up at some point.
Shouldn't that have been posted in the "John Logie Baird has Invented Television" thread?
tps170004 posts since 11 Aug 2018 new member
Was always going to be a tough ask reviving this but on the whole I think Richard is brilliant as his style works, and I've no issue with it all being a bit tongue in cheek and breaking the 4th role.

The only two things I really don't like are firstly the reduction to 10 games. They could easily get 12 in by cutting down the introductions and having a couple of 2min games instead of 3 min.

The second is the teams knowing each other. I think cutting to 5 was the right move but I'm hating how on every lock in teams are buying out straight away, even when they only have 1-2 crystals. I don't think that would happen with strangers.

The original series was so successful that it was sold to several foreign countries and it has fans around the world. It seemed to have a universal appeal. Just take a look at the YouTube comments, people writing in Arabic etc. The problem with Richard’s humour is that it is typical British: let’s make fun of ourselves and of our achievements. I have been living in the UK for more than ten years now but I still have not gotten used to this sense of humour (although I recognise it now). Not sure how this type of humour will go down with international fans who never lived in the UK.


I agree about the 12 games instead of 10. But this again proves that we (as viewers) are more interested in the games themselves rather than what Richard or the contestants have to say or the (sometimes forced) humour during the introductions.

I don’t mind the contestants buying their teammates out, eventually it mostly happened with the old teams as well. Also, people knowing each other brings a different, rather interesting dynamic during the celebrations and during the time when the teammates are trying to help the contestants. I think the only problem is that the teams seem to have a better way and pre-agreed strategy for providing help during the game and much better communication, so some hilarious moments of people screaming wrong instructions simultaneously are now lost.