Welcome to donduk. A refuge for those who enjoy Deal or No Deal, the hit Channel 4 gameshow hosted by Noel Edmonds. The award winning gameshow Deal or No Deal has become a big hit for Channel 4 and marks a sensational return to our screens of Noel Edmonds.

Deal or No Deal is enjoyed my millions of viewers daily, where the contestants battle with The Banker to try and win a jackpot of £250,000. Here at donduk you will find full daily reports of each show, as well Deal or No Deal news and specials. Deal or No Deal although initially appearing very simple in format of just opening a few boxes for the chance to win some big money prizes, actually has some potentially complex decisions to be made at points throughout the show, the contestants occasionally try complex or simple gameplay in an attempt to give them an edge in beating the Banker.

Friday, June 30, 2006

From Patm's archives

James (The Daddy & his wife ) in the cellar.

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Una, Fedil and the girls, after his show.

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Massimo, Fedil, & Gazzer. Where? in the pub of course.

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Pete & lovely wife.

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Were they sloshed - No, only merry. JT. Patm. Una, James and John.

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Thursday, June 29, 2006

Amy's game report

Noel bounds towards the camera to remind us of Ashok's disastrous game yesterday, in which he took home only £250. Wimbledon has started, so we are watching the only show offering the viewer the remotest chance of anyone British winning anything. Well done, Channel 4.

Names flash randomly on the screen and today's player is... gorgeous, pouting Amy, who is the smiliest young woman in the West Wing. She is bear-hugged by Linda E and Sue, on either side of her, before Black Country Mark moves in for a quick two-handed grope of Amy's midriff. Yes, Black Country Mark, we all saw it. Amy is resplendent in a primrose-coloured top and tight jeans and carries box 5 down the apron to the hotseat.

After 21 games of pouting effortlessly from the wing, we finally make Amy's acquaintance. She is another lady who plays poker, and Noel reminds us that this will set the banker's alarm bells sounding. She shows off her photographs: one is of her sister with their nan, whilst the other is of herself at a New Year party, dressed as Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.

Round 1
  • Janelle is first, with box 18: £20,000. The audience oohs.
  • Staying in the East Wing, Amy chooses Nick who opens box 2 and reveals £35,000.
  • Plummy Lance is the next choice: box 14 contains £15,000 and a whole swathe of the red half of the board has been cleared. More oohing emanates from the audience.
  • Lynda B opens box 19 and reveals £250, the first blue figure.
  • Finally in this first round, Amy plumps for Debbie, who is a rather frightening concoction in black and perhaps represents the Wicked Witch of the East Wing. Box 16 contains £10.

A mixed first round, which was neither dazzlingly good nor dazzlingly bad. During the call, we learn that the banker is "corpulent" and that he noted Amy's obvious popularity with her fellow players. Sniggers break out in both wings: perhaps there is a story behind this. It may be connected to the revelation that Amy can place her leg behind her head and play it "like a guitar." Alan looks decidedly guilty at this news: perhaps he likes a secret strum himself. Amy promises us a look at her party-piece if she wins a large amount. Black Country Mark (the Dirty Groper) rolls up his tongue by hand and places it back in his mouth.

The banker's offer is a surprisingly high £6,600. Perhaps he is respectful of Amy's poker skills. She appears to chew over the offer - perhaps literally, since her lips close and her jaw moves - before replying confidently: "No deal." She claps dementedly.

Round 2

  • Amy opts for Sally and box 3. For some reason, Sally is wearing a red gift ribbon around her neck. She reveals £50.
  • The new player is Giorgio, who tells us that he came to the UK from Assisi a long time ago. Probably for Debbie's benefit, he explains that this is in Italy. His thick accent is almost a parody of itself, rather as though a bit-player from 'Allo 'Allo has walked into the studio. There are wild cheers as St Giorgio of Assisi reveals the 1p in box 21. Amy grins and inevitably claps.
  • We go to the break and return with Connell and box 15. "Not one of the big four," pleads Noel, conveniently forgetting that - along with Nick, Black Country Mark (the Dirty Groper) and the truly formidable Linda E - Connell is certainly one of the four biggest contestants. Noel's confidence is well-placed, for Connell reveals the £1. Noel compares Amy to a sealion, although she has yet to balance any balls on her nose, at least in public. Black Country Mark (the Dirty Groper) clearly wishes she would try, as his eyes glaze over.

The banker calls and offers a whopping £16,600. Amy asks for advice and the audience swiftly replies with a call of "play on" in uncanny unison. Among the audience, Amy's friend Melissa agrees: the chances of taking out three of the four remaining large sums in the next round are low. Noel suggests that Amy's indecisiveness at this offer may have allowed the banker an insight into her character. She eventually decides: "No deal."

Round 3

  • Amy gestures to Black Country Mark (the Dirty Groper). He smiles dreamily back, perhaps recalling his earlier furtive grope and her reputed ball control. If not her heart, perhaps he wishes he had another part of Amy's anatomy. Box 4 reveals £1,000, which Noel pointlessly and maddeningly calls "the honorary blue" yet again.
  • Alan is next with box 12, which contains 50p.
  • Amy re-allocates the nickname Smiler to Vic (although it is not hers to give away) and he obligingly opens box 1 to show £750. All over the land, fans of the scrumptious Dave W (the true Smiler) begin writing to their MPs.

After her indifferent start, Amy's last eight boxes have revealed nothing greater than £1,000. Noel jokes that we will get to see her guitar trick after all. Despite an all-blue third round, the banker's offer is only slightly higher at £20,000.

Amy is again indecisive. She asks for the sweep. Lance describes the offer as derisory, John reminds her that she has seven "disposable" amounts, Alan believes there is at least another deal in the game. Debbie, at the most easterly end of the East Wing, spouts some pointless drivel and then makes the call-centre faux pas which really ought to be punishable by an computer-generated slap: "It's up to yourself," she tells Amy.

No, Debbie, it's "up to you". Not "yourself" but "you". At the risk of sounding like an irritated English teacher, I will swing for the next customer service person who makes the same mistake in a conversation with me. What is the betting that Debbie works in a call-centre? We shall doubtless find out when she gets to play. Perhaps, just perhaps, she is the electricity call-centre woman (whom I had to correct three times for this very reason in a four-minute call last month) who had the cheek to ask me to stop correcting her atrocious grammar. I do hope not, since she has obviously relapsed. In any case, perhaps Debbie wishes she had a brain.

Anyway, back in the studio, Melissa advises her friend to consider the offer. "Don't go on just to spite the banker," she warns wisely. Noel asks the remaining members of the audience whether they think Amy ought to deal. Not one stands up: a conclusive verdict. This is enough to convince Amy: "No deal." Turning down £20,000, Amy clearly does not need to wish for courage.

Round 4

  • Chris opens box 6 and the room is disappointed to see £75,000.
  • John hopes that box 13 "doesn't spoil it" but it is a forlorn hope: £50,000.
  • The second ad break is called as Amy chooses Sue and box 10. We return to Noel's usual warning of death and damnation in the event that another red number is revealed. Sue duly disproves his theory as she reveals the £250,000 but the world fails to topple off its axis. Amy, however, has her hands over her mouth and her eyes pop out in a failed attempt to exit her face. She looks as though she has just caught the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion and the Tin Man in a compromising position. She visualises the Scarecrow with one leg behind his own neck and the other behind the Tin Man's and looks justifiably quizzical.

The banker is certain to punish Amy for a truly disastrous round. Sure enough, the offer is just £5,000. Rather gamely given the circumstances, Amy tut-tuts at the studio audience for its bad advice. Alan rather needlessly tells Amy that she ought to keep the highest numbers on the board. Linda E declares that she would play on. Amy concurs: "No deal."

Round 5

Noel commands Black Country Mark (the Dirty Groper) to sit in front of the £100,000 on the game board, as though this will prevent it being revealed. Inexplicably, he obliges and sits cross-legged on the floor. Perhaps this is due punishment for his grope.

  • Pierre ouvre la boîte 20 et montre le €4,400. Noel again has to indicate that this is worth £3,000. Pierre looks up and sideways at Amy with his big cow eyes, in a way most reminiscent of Diana on the Panorama interview. The likeness is quite astonishing.
  • Paul opens box 7 and reveals 10p.
  • With box 17, Naqiyah is Amy's next choice and she obliges with £100.

Amy waves at Black Country Mark (the Dirty Groper). He waves back from the floor and looks a little chastened for the experience. The banker's offer is £9,950. Someone in the audience boos gently before realising that he is alone.

Amy again asks for help. Debbie fails entirely with her attempt at game analysis by pointing out that Amy won't win £100,000 if she takes out the £100,000. Jade Goody has a rival. "I want a hundred grand," pouts Amy childishly before declaring that she is ready for the question. She responds with a sensible but obviously reluctant "Deal."

Post-deal: Round 6 and Endgame

  • Amy has her fingers crossed and holds her temples with her palms: for such a pretty girl, she unfortunately resembles a young moose. Buddy opens box 8 and shows £5.
  • Roy wishes Amy every future success as he opens box 22: £100,000. Amy holds her arms aloft in triumph.
  • Obviously now caring little for the outcome, Amy chooses Monica and box 11: £500.

With £5,000 and £10,000 left on the board, the offer would have been a testing £7,400. Amy declares that she would have played on, although her instinct is that she holds the £5,000. She is correct. Linda E, in yet another Alice band, opens box 9 to complete the game and reveal the £10,000. Despite her tight jeans, Amy keeps her promise to exhibit her leg-guitar as the credits roll.

Conclusion

From Black Country Mark's opening grope to Linda E's final reveal, Amy was in complete control of her game. Her early frantic clapping threatened to send the impartial viewer into complete fury until she discovered a cure for her clap around the time of Vic's £750.

Heart, courage, brain: Amy possessed them all, unlike some of her colleagues. All that was missing was the Wicked Banker threatening Amy's dog with GBH. There really is no place like Deal or No Deal.

Amy clicked her heels, played her leg as a guitar and returned to Kansas with £9,950.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Ashok's Game Report

Tonight by my favourite youngest daughter Olivia (dad is very proud)

Deal or no deal appears on the screen .We say hello noel while he starts up with the usual waffle. Poor man, he tries so hard to make it un repetitive.
I seem to remember Noel attacking someone for wearing a deck chair for a shirt well Noel, not setting the perfect example today are we!

Who’s going come out here with a 45 minute appointment with the banker from hell he says, well yes, that sounds like a fabulous game to play, Noel would be a great salesman wouldn’t he? It’s Ashok, who takes the walk of wealth today with box 8,
Ashok shows us some pictures of his grandparents who are from Northern India along with Ashok, who took an international flight to play on deal or no deal. Well who wouldn’t? We also see a picture of one of Ashok’s friends who looks like he’s lost in the 70s. It’s nice to here Noel speak with intelligence as he reads a poem that Ashok has written about deal or no deal. Noel gets a sense of passion in Ashok and feels that the banker will understand him. We will have to find out if Noel is right.

Once again we are told that the independent adjudicator is the only one who knows where the boxes are, well I bet the independent adjudicator is sitting is quite happily on a beach somewhere with a drink in his hand while we are sucked into watching this intense game! I wonder how you can become the independent adjudicator maybe ill be one of those when I’m older: P

Anyway we start the game with round one, strangely enough.
The first box is from Vic with the £10,000, its ok.
The next box is number 3 with the £5 which is much better.
Then we have Box 18 with £1
Mark box 7 £35,000 Ashok notes that this is not blue, how intelligent of him.
To end the round Sally takes out the £1. The banker phones up Noel for a chat and states that when he heard international jet set and former model, Ashok wasn’t what he had in mind. The banker is slightly nicer and says he feels that Ashok is a good reader of the game and so gives him the kind offer of £7,000. Ashok heard this offer and saw that it was good but he doesn’t accept the offer. No way he says and then corrects himself to the more traditional saying of no deal.

Round two starts of with Alan and box 4, he reveals the £20,000 the audience suck the air from the room. A rather gentlemanly fellow feels that his box, number 5, is warm, and produces the £100. How rather gentlemanly of him!

Noel assures us that we will be back to see what happens in the game of way or no way and we are left with Carl who tells us with all the fake enthusiasm in the world that we could win the contents of the blue boxes, how exciting Carl!

So Ashok is a former model?!? For what, may I ask? I understand the poetry but modelling?? Not so very Ashok I think. After the break Sue and box 14 gives us another blue with lots of cheers. (Sorry didn’t see which one) Ashok has the banker’s attention and the offer has gone up to £21,000 well the banker is obviously worried about Ashok because that is a fantastic offer but Ashok says no deal.

Next round and Linda takes the £3,000 out of the game. Pierre thinks that box 19 is a low one and the 250k is out of reach for Ashok, oh Pierre you were so wrong. But Ashok is ok after a slight lapse but the offer isn’t going be great. John with box 11 hasn’t got the 1p but he has got the £10 and that will do for Ashok. We will say goodbye to the incredible offer of £21,000 as the banker sounds happier. His offer is £12,000 pounds which, with the quarter mil gone, is still a decent offer from the banker who is definitely intimidated by Ashok , but who wouldn’t be with his glasses and his neat shirt and impeccably tidy hair. No deal.

Next round starts with Box 22 and £750 is out of the game. Box 12 contains £500 and this is looking like a better round. Ashok who seems to be feeling lucky asks the audience. Is this game of deal or no deal or who wants to be a millionaire?
As Ashok discovers how to work a microphone Noel, sounding like the crocodile hunter observing an interesting mammal, gives us a break. The majority of the audience has chosen box 6 and Ashok decides to go with the audience. I’m really confused where has deal or no deal gone? Why are we watching who wants to be a millionaire? Anyway the majority suck as poor Ashok chooses box 6 and reveals the 50k. The banker will be laughing, and he is. He compliments the audience on their sound advice. Apparently an incredibly generous offer according to the banker who normally lies when he says this, but £15,000 is not at all a bad offer for the board in front of us and the nerve racking music comes on while we wait for the answer. This is a waste since Ashok says perfectly calmly, no deal. Ashok wants a quickie. I cannot bear to listen to the irony and the jokes.

Box 13 kills off the £75,000 and box 16 attacks the £100,000. Luckily the round ends with a blue. (sorry the quickie was too quick! I couldn’t get the amount!!)But it doesn’t matter the board is ruined. The banker is laughing again. He says whoever would have thought a quickie with Ashok would be so pleasurable. I think there going to have to put deal or no deal after the watershed soon and the offer is £2,500. No deal.

They decide to go back to Ashok’s original method of measured progress and box 21 is opened with 10p inside. It works. Next box 15 gives us £1000 so now were trying to find the 1p.Ashok chooses box 9 with the highest number left with box £15,000 , Oh dear ,but Ashok is reasonable about his loss even though the mood is subdued.
The bankers respects Ashok at this point for his quality of courage, he offers of £120. No deal. But the final blow is that we find that between the 1p and the £250 Ashok has the £250 in his box, he wanted to join the 1p club.

When Ashok took the walk of wealth I honestly thought he would do very well and for a few rounds he was, unfortunately it peaked and then all went down hill for him. It wasn’t an emotional game because Ashok was not an emotional person and it stayed calm even throughout the tough moments.

Ashok won £250

Pat M gets a yellow card

Just in case you've forgotten what this glorious woman is about, have a look at this

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Melanie's Game

Hi guys, Adie here with Tuesday's game report, good to have you with us! Make yourselves comfortable, dim the lights, stretch out on the chaise-lounge, reach for your tipple of choice and settle down for the afternoon's proceedings...

As my original slot here was to be "stats man" I should kick off with a quick word about last week's games, which to be quite honest were rather unremarkable, at least in terms of the amounts won by last week's contestants... For a start, the average win - at £12,250 - was virtually identical to the average final box value of £12,208, so if all of the players had gone through to the end, we'd have had pretty much the same result (though Eileen wouldn't have been pleased, having won £16,500 for a 50p box!)

Perhaps more interesting (and worrying) is that the long-term trend for the average win across the whole series in heading inexorably downwards, and is now at just over £16,000, whereas only a few months ago it was over £17,500... This seems to be down to two factors - on one hand more cautious play in general as contestants get to know the intimacies of the game, leading some players to deal at a less than optimal time for fear of losing everything (perfectly reasonable bearing in mind some of the "crash & burn" games we've witnessed over the months.) On the other hand we see a lot of "damn-the-torpedoes" players, pretty determined to go to the final endgame, which more often tends to end in disaster...

What's really fascinating about this last group is that they mostly tend to carry on to the bitter end only if they're having a bad game, most obviously highlighted by the fact that the average "final box value" is almost £22,000, so if everyone just went to the final box, they'd theoretically win 35% more! Just over half of contestants actually win more than is in their final box though, again emphasising that it tends to be the bad games that end up at the "endgame" (don't tell £100,000 Gaz though!) Statistically though, we're behind in seeing the £250,000 in a player's box, so maybe this week is The Week!

And talking of the present, let's get going with Tuesday's game... Noel introduces with a looooooooooong pause before "No Deal" in a lilac striped little number, rather more subdued than of late... It seems we've given up on the Wimbledon theme after one day, so no more tennis puns and we're back to the red boxes, but why are all the audience dressed in black? Do they know something we don't?

So let's go through Noel's list - Greet East Wing? Check. Greet West Wing? Check. "Entertainment Drama?" Check. "Pound Table?" Check. "Never sit here again?" Check. There's some reference to "A Night At The Opera" and "A Day At The Races" that I imagine is going to lead us into a Marx Brothers or Queen pun, but it never arrives...

Noel informs us that "the future is about to open up quite literally," though I think he means metaphorically, "for... MELANIE!"

Amid much hugging and applause Mel makes her way from the East Wing, giving the now traditional bows to the wings as she does so, carrying Box 22 (and is it me, or have a lot of players recently had box 22 as their box?)
Mel is bubbly and as excited as you'd expect. A rather more unexpected element is the rolling pin she places on her box, of which more later.

If you'd like to picture Mel, imagine Chrissie Hynde if she came from Dagenham rather than Detroit, for Mel is an Essex Girl, and proud of it, as indeed am I, writing this as I am from the depths of deepest Ilford...

Melanie Lucy has been a beautician for 3 years, and tempts OFCOM with a pre-Watershed reference to giving The Banker a "Back, Sack & Crack" treatment, which I can only imagine got through because the editors didn't understand what she meant! She's accompanied by her Mum, Sue, whom I can only describe as exactly how you'd imagine the mother of a Dagenham beautician to look.

Mel's ambition is to buy a farm before she's 40 - Noel's response that she'll have to get a move on to do that in the next year is completely overlooked to his obvious amusement... the rolling pin belongs to her late aunt who died last year, prompting tears and the recollection of the rolling pin which was allegedly used on her uncle's fairground game, "Rolling The Money," and so seemed an appropriate lucky charm... as an aside, I can find no reference to any such game on the interweb, so if anyone can verify this, please do so!

A reference to Mel's pocketfulls of lucky charms later we're into housekeeping (Mel's the first player I can remember to ask who the independent adjudicator is), a nice "You all look beautiful" from Mel to the Wings, and we're off!

ROUND 1
Paul (Box 13) - £250
Janelle (10) - £50
Connell (7) - £10
Monica (9) - £1
This is looking great, and Noel reminds us (after wondering why everyone's speaking like an extra from Eastenders) that only Aaron & Michelle have had all-blue first rounds to date... but inevitably...
Nick (Box 2) - £10,000
Still a great first round though - "great innit?" in Mel's words in fact! The Banker says he's always wanted to meet a woman who wants a big fat potbellied pig (in reference to her farming ambitions), mentioning that although he has an average amount of hair, it's "rather haphazardly distributed..." Noel manages to squeeze out the offer between giggles - £9,100, which isn't too bad at all, but Mel asks for the question straight away, and it's no deal!

ROUND 2
Linda B (Box 5) - £3,000
Lance (3) - £5 (today's new boy, an avuncular gent whose "posh" accent is contrasted with Mel's Essex tones for comical effect)
"Do you know how good this is?" asks Noel... "I'm always good" says Mel cheekily, and Noel sends us off for a break, returning with...
Buddy (16) - £75,000
Massed "ooohs" from the audience, though Mel isn't bothered as she still has the "two bad boys" in the running... The Banker is scared she'll spend all his money on a pig and offers her £15,500, exactly what Ryan won yesterday... with barely a pause, Mel asks for The Question, and it's a "thank you, but no deal!"

ROUND 3
Alan (6) - 50p
Chris (18) - 10p
Debbie (17) - 1p
Wow! The best possible round, the 3 lowest boxes taken out, what are the odds of that happening? Actually 1 in 364, but I digress... Noel's right, it's "an amazing scenario," and we see Mel mouthing the words "I love you all" to the Wings (lip-reading is all part of the service here at DOND Fanatics - accept no substitute!) while The Banker phones in his offer of a great-for-round-3 £30,000! To everyone's shock (especially Sally's), Mel immediately asks for The Question, and Noel leans in close for emphasis as he asks it... "£30,000... Deal... Or No Deal...?"... and Mel shocks us all with a cheery "Deal!"

Now I reckon that's only the 2nd ever round 3 deal, but would welcome any corroboration on that... well, we've seen so many games collapse after great early offers, no-one can begrudge Mel her £30,000, even with 8 reds against 3 blues on the board, including the £100,000 and £250,000... Noel asks those in the audience who are surprised to stand up, and they nearly all do, as do a few of us watching at home... by now, Mel's in tears, telling us she only wanted £500 and a good time, and didn't want to write it in the book as it would seem funny.. only now as we go into the break does she seem to realise that she might have £250,000 in her box... could she have made a huge mistake...?

So we return to Noel hyping us up for all we're worth, telling us that in 212 games he's never seen a contestant so much in turmoil after accepting a deal, so how would have the game panned out?

(HYPOTHETICAL) ROUND 4
Amy (8) - £750 (to massed "ooooohs" from the audience)
Roy (11) - £250,000 - YES! A big hug for Roy and more tears from Mel
Ashok (4) - £20,000
It's still a strong board despite the big one going, and would have gotten an offer of £14,000, which Mel might have turned down if her mother hadn't been there...

(HYPOTHETICAL) ROUND 5
Mark (15) - £100,000 - YES! (again!)
Sue (12) - £15,000
John (1) - £35,000
Through clenched teeth and the appluase of the audience, The Banker gives his offer of £4,000, which Mel wouldn't have accepted...

(HYPOTHETICAL) ROUND 6
Pierre (19) - £5,000
Linda E (21) £50,000 - YES! (again again!) More hugs, tears and applause, this really couldn't have gone much better...
Vic (14) - £500
Noel advises Mel to calm down before someone brings in a straitjacket, and passes on the offer of £400, which she would have refused, and we finally head into...

(HYPOTHETICAL) ROUND 7
Just 2 boxes left, with £100 or £1,000... Noel opens Mel's box 22 to reveal... £100! The perfect finish! As tables are thumped and Sally (in tears herself) opens box 20 to show the £1,000, Mel announces she's going to buy a few ducks for her farm with the money to start with, and buy the rest of the animals later...

A perfectly judged game from Mel, enjoyment of which was only slightly hampered by the very quick resolution... she may not have had Aaron's bookie background, but she was an excellent contestant and got the same great result by learning from other's mistakes and not being greedy and having the courage to deal early... but what did you expect? Essex Girls always come first... 'til next time, NO DEAL!

Melanie won £30,000.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Ryan's game

Coffee flavoured short sleeved cornetto seems to be the order of the day for this rainy Monday show. The dream factory celebrates Wimbledon week, with green boxes decorated with yellow balls. The studio is centre court and the audience will predictably be making the usual racquet (groan).

A somewhat portly, older looking Brian McFadden, aka Ryan, a field sales something or other, considers himself a lucky person and especially lucky today with box 15.

Round 1
Noel calls for belief…….as per usual
Ryan faces the dilemma of saving his special numbers until the end or getting them out of the way first.

Sue, box 7 – 10p a great start appreciated by all.
Paul, box 11 - £100 – Paul’s teeth are a bit scary.
Linda B, Box 8 - 50p
Nick, box ? - 1p
Chris, box 17 – £1000

Bryan remarks on the phenomenon of fellow contestants ‘morphing’ from ordinary sane drinking partners each evening into brainless plebs the minute they sit in the chair. He confirms that he also has morphed with all those past players and can now no longer think or count up to three without his fingers and toes being brought into play.

The Banker announces a score of 15-love. Ryan needs the ‘love’ bit explaining and looks suspiciously at Noel’s attempt at an explanation. Just tell me the offer Noel he begs. It is £12,000 which is nice, according to Bryan/Ryan who hopes he hasn’t peaked too early – ask me the question please – No deal.

Round2
Alan, box 21 – Nana Ryan’s birthday – oops - £35,000
Monica, box 20 - £10
Sally completes this round with box 5 – break point to the ads. Sally then rushes to the microphone and breathlessly announces the money to be won at home for the very reasonable cost of £1 per call (– not all calls will be successful she tells us – but all calls will be charged.)
Oh dear, Sally’s box contained £250,000. Bryan/Ryan is gutted, but still feeling strong. The offer from the man on the phone – is £4,000 – No deal from the hot seat.

Round 3
Amy, box 22 - £10,000
Linda, Box 13 - £100,000 spookily forecast from the chair prior to it being opened.
Pierre, box ? £15,000
According to the banker Bryan/Ryan advised Shirley to deal at £16,000, he disagrees and the banker asks to speak to him. Bryan offers to dish the dirt on all the other contestants in return for a good offer. Noel has the phone back for the actual offer, which turns out to be a disappointing £5,500 – No hesitation - No deal.

Round 4 – a quickie is decided upon.
Roy, box 19 - £250
Woody? box 6 - £1
John, box 18 –
To the break again and Sally is still flogging the game at home.
Back from the ads to John and the last in this, not so quickie round, reveals £50.

3 blues and 5 reds remain on the board.

There is much debate around the upcoming offer – Argy bargy goes on around writing it in the book and whispering in ears. The actual offer is £15,500.
A sweep is asked for and Noel tries to get away with doing it from where he is standing. Bryan/Ryan suggests that Noel is getting a bit lazy and he should go along in the usual way. He does as he is asked and most of the contestants advise no deal.

Bryan/Ryan agonises, he is very tempted to deal but doesn’t want to be a chicken. He declares he would rather go one deal too soon than one too late. It takes twice but eventually he manages to get out the – deal answer.

Hypothetical round 5
Janelle, box 9 - £750
Vic, box 14 - £3,000
Ashok, box 10 - £5
Gutted is the answer to Noel’s question of how he feels now. Game set and match to the banker the offer would have been £25,000 Ryan tells us he would have dealt at this point.

Round 6
Debbie, box 4 - £20,000
Connel, box 1 - £75,000 elicits a huge round of applause.
Melanie, box 2 - £5,000

The last two boxes are £500 and £50,000. The offer at this point would have been £12,000. Bryan/Ryan tells us he would never have risked such an amount on, what is essentially, the flip of a coin. Noel opens up box 15 to the huge delight of the studio revealing Bryan/Ryan’s box had just £500 in it.

Ryan looks genuinely happy with his game and his winnings. Once again he seems a very popular member of the DOND social scene who will be missed. I liked him a lot.

Until next time – Sue

Ryan won £15,500

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Pennie's Game Report

Hanging on the wire,
I’m waiting for the change
I'm dancing through the fire,
Just to catch a flame
And feel real again.
(Paul Weller, You do something to me)

Noel recommended courage, this was what it took to move from good to great. After the standard waffle Noel is forced to deliver as part of his contract we moved closer to playing the game, 'Lets find a vic...a client for the banker', he said pretending to correct himself. Today it was Pennie, the weeping Su Pollard of the East Wing. Pennie was wearing ragged jeans as she hopped and skipped the walk of wealth with box 14. Noel accused her of dressing from the dump, so she ran round him, burrowed in his back pocket and pulled out a yellow card. Pennie was scared of hieghts, drowning, death and the number 13, 'God i sound a bit mad don't I'. The mad person was Pennelope Bashman from Wakesfield, with three children, no mention of hubby, and her sister Cherie was in the audience...well Hello Cherie. Her photo was of her baby twins, cherubs in classic Ruebens style. Her other daughter Zoe drew a picture of her on DOND when she first found out she had got a place - she had spookily drawn the box 14. Pennie was very excited, a mother of three young children, and maybe back home she was doing it all, so this was her big moment and she was going to grab it with both fists.

Round one: Sally, box 11 - £100,000, the seond highest amount had gone with the very first box. Ashok, box 4 - £500 - Pennie had morphed into a Maori warrior, a completely over the top reaction to a mediocre second box. Mick was next with box 5 - £1 - Pennie's excitement was growing if that was possible. Linda E, box 15 - £250,000 - 'that shut her up', I nearly wrote, but her mouth was wide open for the longest time, and I mean wide, she was the envy of basking sharks the world over....but she didn't cry, not a tear, not a drop. 'Sue, box 20', Pennie's voice broken, betraying the emotion underneath - £50. 'I cannot believe that, thats not funny, thats not nice', was Yorkshire Pennie's summary of the game so far - but at least she wasn't crying. The banker's offer was £1313, her most feared number, twice - 'no deal'.

Round two: Mel, box 16 - £5000. Pennie blowing kisses, Mel nodding like a rock star accepting plaudits. Ryan next with box 7 - £3000. Then Pennie introduced the break, and this was straight into DOND from the good old days: Pennie was in my living room, begging me to come back after the break while she had a cup of tea and a chat about the game, the same way Michael Cane Alfie talked to the camera. After the break Monica opened box 10 - 10p - the tea must have had something in it, we had now moved from excited to frenzied, Pennie was jumping and screaming like a banshee. The offer had reached £7013. Pennie explained that Daughter zoe, was born on the 13th, at 13 minutes past 13.00. 'And she weighed 13 pounds', joked Noel. Pennie laughed, 'no my twins were big babies though, 7lbs and 6lbs'. Noel pointed out to her, apparently for the first time, that her twins had weighed a combined 13 pounds.

Round three: She went for a quickie. Connel, box 2 - 50p, Buddy, box 1 - £100. By this point Penny was hysterical and then she went for box 8 - £35,000 (missed who it was). The offer now was £11012. Pennie crunched up in her chair to view the board, then sat back - 'No deal'. In looking round to the audience, she turned into Lee - 'come on'. It was difficult to get into this game because of the noise, the screaming was all too over the top, and it was spoiling what at its core was turnig into a very strong board considering hw badly Pennie had started.

Round four: Alan, box 3 - £10. She rushed across to hug him. Chris, box 9 - £5 - pennie running on the spot alloose parts boucing everywhere. 'Come on Kate, come on' said Pennie, pushing herself on - I have no idea who Kate was, perhaps Pennie can come on here and tell us. Noel welcomed us back after the break, declaring that the board was strong and wouldn't it be amazing if the next blue was 1p. Pierre was selected to open box 12 - he opened the lid on 1p - suspiciously convenient, I suspect an attempt by Endemol to change Noel's image as the harbinger of doom everytime he talks up a position. Pennie rushed across to Pierre hugged him, and then the tears started. But they were soon gone - the board was too strong for tears, six reds against two blues. She went round the contestants, they all said 'no deal', her 'gorgeous sister was a chicken and would 'deal', Pennie had all the ba......nerve in that family - No deal' she shouted with all the fervour of a rabied kamikaze.

Round five: Roy, Box 21 - £1000. Concentrate advised Noel, as if concentrating would make any difference in a completely random game of choice. Janelle opened Box 6 - £750 - Pennie was now beyond acting, she had evolved into her own charicature, completely uncontrolled and from Noel's view uncontrollable - 'don't start the tears yet', said Noel, way too late. Box 19, Linda B - £15,000. Pennie screaed, the crowd roared, Cherie sat flushed and very attractive, with shoulder length blonde hair, and a fresh open face that you could imagine smiling up, dishevelled from half way up a hay barn....sorry back to the game. The board was now left with one blue and four reds including £75k and £50k. Cherie's view was 'oooo I can't believe it, blooming heck' just like the Boddingtons beer advert. The offer was now £25,000, and for the second time tonight we looked down a very long dark tunnel, Pennie's reaction was to sit motion less catching fies with her cvernous mouth. People around the room were petrified of what she was going to do, she held the photo of her twins, turned to Noel - No deal.

Round six: Someone had flicked Pennie's nuclear switch, she just kept reaching new heights of over-the-top-ness. Vic, box 18 - £75,000. 'No, but we still have the 50', said Noel immediately, hoping to fill the void that was no more Pennie. Mark, box 17 - £20,000. 'We are still alive', re-assured Noel, but Pennie was panicking, 'ooo two bad numbers...'. She steadied, Amy box 13 - £250. Suddenly Pennie had done it, it took moments to sink in, Pennie was going home with at least £10,000. She ran across to Amy and hugged her. The banker phoned - 'wow', he said, it was exhausting. The offer was now £30,000, immediately a man from the audience shouted 'take it'. Pennie, calmed a little, sat in her chair, her eyes through Hank Marvins glasses, looked straight ahead, 'This is my lucky day and I don't do things by halves, ask me the question'. The gorgeous Cherie was now beyond fear, beyond death itself, no matter what her sister did now, it wouldn't matter. Pennie gave all the signals that she was going on, but then she turned to Noel with the biggest smile, because she had the biggest mouth -'Deal'.

Noel lifted the lid, Pennie had £10,000, she had dealt at exactly the right time. Debbie had the £50,000 in box 22.

This was a game of two levels, at one it was a great game, where Pennie showed bags of courage, and at another it was like watching 1970s Professional Wrestling with Ken Walton - way, way over the top.

Pennie won £30,000

Friday, June 23, 2006

Bianca's game report

Hi, everyone, its Chris back again for todays game report.

The show kicks off with the usual "22 sealed boxes....... money...... question..... large bowl of porridge" (ok, so I may have slightly made that last one up) and then, after the credits, noel (looking like a retro floral-patterned armchair) begins his usual waffle about dreams, factories, drama and other such things. He reflects on Shirleys game, and says that the game can be Treasure Island. He says that a bit of bravery can get contestants a long way (wise words armchair-man).

Who is it going to be today? The lights fall on Bianca Marshall (Bianca meet the Banker says Noel. Hilarious)
Bianca looks slightly scared but is smiling as she takes Box 22 (ooo its 22 again) to the table.
Noel points out that the last time Box 22 was there, it was £250,000. Bianca says that she thinks its there again (don't they all). She shows pictures of her children. Her children have picked her a list of numbers. She says that she is a lucky person with regards to her family, and points to her mother in the audience. She plans to open a boutique with her winnings (they all have big plans don't they).

Noel runs through the usual guff, and then gets on with it.

Round 1
  • 1. Box 14 - Mark £100 - Good start, cheers from the audience.
  • 2. Box 2 - Linda £10,000 - Slightly muted applause, but its not too bad.
  • 3. Box 15 - Alan - £35,000 - Again, fine at this point. She says, rather prematurely, that she is gutted.
  • 4. Box 11 - Nick - £20,000 - Obliterating the lower reds her.
  • 5. Box 19 - Pennie - 50p - Bianca jumps up and down, relieved to hit a blue for a change.

The banker calls straight away. Bianca is going a bit silly on the chair, and Noel isn't on the phone for very long. The banker is concentrating on the 22 having £250,000 twice before. He offers her a swap as he is scared that its there again. This is only the second time hes done this and its already getting ridiculous. He also tries to chat up Bianca's mum (.....oh dear).

She turns down the swap immediately, however, and on we go....

Round 2

  • 6. Box 7 - Connell £75,000 - Absolute silence
  • 7. Box 8 - Chris 1p - thats more like it, an absolutely insane cackle from Bianca

Bianca picks Melanie next, but Noel calls a break, saying that if she had swapped with Nick, she would have won £75,000. Spot the total error here. Sort it out Noel....

Back after the break and Noel checks that she still wants Box 4. She says she does and on we go...

  • 8. Box 4 - Melanie £100,000 - She should have changed her mind.....

She says that she is not frightened of the banker. The Banker, however, is laughing (Noel does the phone-to-the-mic thing again). After another chat up line directed at Bianca's mum, the offer is £5,000.

She looks at the board briefly, but there is no real doubt as to the decision here. It is No Deal.

Needs a good one here.... Noel suggest a quickie, and then tells the audience off for chuckling. Cheeky....

Round 3-Quickie

  • 9. Box 6 - Monica £5 - Cheers
  • 10. Box 1 - Ashok £50 - More cheers
  • 11. Box 21 - Roy £500 - Noel delivers another satisfying quickie, Bianca says that quickies are always good. Oh the humour....

Can't deny though that it was a great round, and the banker takes a little longer to call this time.

He calls down Bianca's mum to the phone to chat her up a bit more. Noel is not impressed however and exclaims "Oh, Please!!" A great moment. The banker tells her mum the next offer. Its now £10,000. Noel doesn't believe her however and phones the banker back!! This is a first. He asks if he really offered £50,000. The banker replies that it really was 10k, but there were conditions attached (again, oh dear).

Bianca seems to be considering this offer seriously, and she asks for the sweep. Every single person says No Deal, but its her decision. She very, very quickly says No Deal, and tries to hype up the crowd again.

Onwards...

Round 4

  • 12. Box 5 - Amy £15,000 - The backup has now gone. Its £250k, £50k, and not a lot else.
  • 13. Box 18 - Sally 10p - This game is now beginning to get interesting, the tension is slowly rising.

Bianca then asks for Pierre's Box 20, but Noel calls a break, wondering if the next box is going to kill the game off, and whether Bianca's mother is about to become the seventh Mrs. Banker.

After the break, Noel again double-checks that Bianca still wants Box 20, she again says she does....

  • 14. Box 20 - Pierre £50,000 - Its a one box game, Bianca begins to cry.

She is now looking desperate, Pennie's crying too (again). Its all going wrong. Or is it? This sort of board forces people to play to the end, and if the £250k is indeed there again, she has a very good chance of winning it now. After her mother returns to the table to comfort her, the banker calls and offers £3,800. She looks complative for a while, and then suddenly demands the question. Which way is this going? She's no dealt again. This is going all the way I think.... Noel wants this to be a successful round. She calls another Quickie

Round 5

  • 15. Box 13 - Paul £1 - Getting louder...
  • 16. Box 17 - Lynda £250,000 - And its all gone quite, its peanutsland
  • 17. Box 03 - Ryan £5,000 - Big ouch

£3,000 is now the highest amount left. The bankers offer is now £600. Utter silence as Noel asks the question.

Round 6

  • 18. Box 12 - Sue £250 - Noel is trying to inject some enthusiasm, but this game is now dead
  • 19. Box 16 - Janelle £10 - Great stuff
  • 20. Box 10 - Vic £750 - A very unlikely all-blue round.

We are left with £1,000 and £3,000. Bianca is now utterly broken. Noel tries to cheer her up by pretending to cry, which seems to work. The banker says that he read Bianca wrong, that he had assumed that she was only interested in shoes and bags, and not her kids, and he had now been proved wrong. The offer is now £2,000. A rare occasion that the banker offers the average. Noel says that if she wins the extra £1,000 she can buy then some more tissues as they've run out. But she deals.

She says that she thinks that the £3,000 is in Box 22. Noel tries to cheer her up, but then opens the box to reveal £3,000. She looks totally gutted. It was a game that looked pretty promising at one point, but then collapsed before the offers got off the ground. A disappointing game. Bianca didn't really do anything wrong at any point, she was just extremely unlucky. The loss of the £250,000 seemed to hit her extremely hard, and she was crying for the rest of the game, but at least she went away with a reasonable amount.

Bianca won £2,000.

Hit Parade - Chart 15

Well there it is, Dave W has finally toppled the Queen of DOND. We had a recount, but its official, and what is more he is puling away from the rest strongly. With Lucy, following her re-appearance in last week's Hall of Fame, also sweeping past into second place as she trails in Dave W's wake. Pat M has settled into third place but I suspect she may well be back up as she has a very strong following. Beccais continuing to make good progress, and mysteriously, so is the banker - who ridiculously is even more popular than Kirsty (call up the hague, this is surely a crime against humanity). Raj has dropped to seventh while Noel continues to languish in eigthth. And finally this week, we have lost Lofty and gained Suzanne, while Jo has started a steady climb.

1. Dave W (Pat M)
2. Lucy (Dave W)
3. Pat M (Raj)
4. Becca (Lucy)
5. Banker (Kirsty)
6. Kirsty (Banker)
7. Raj (Becca)
8. Noel (Noel)
9. Jo (Lofty)
10.Suzanne (Jo)

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Shirley's game report

Thursday again and, therefore, my turn to guide you through the maze of "Deal or No Deal".

Noel introduces today's show by telling us that he is reading a tale by R L Stevenson, in which two young men seek riches. More prophetically, the tale is named "The Wrong Box". This is only half the story, of course: what he doesn't tell us is that the plot revolves around a tontine, which is a curious investment scheme into which many people place funds, which the last survivor inherits.

If DOND were a tontine, few would wager that today's player Shirley would be the last survivor. The Rednal Banshee, as she is destined to be remembered, shrieks "Wow" all the way to the chair carrying box 16. Middle-aged Shirley has a smoker's cackle and is married to Jim, with a son and two grandchildren. The obligatory pictures are shown to the camera: the children are inevitably described as angelic although the objective viewer knows this is rarely the case.

Shirley is from Rednal on the southern outskirts of Birmingham, within spitting distance of the Rover site at Longbridge. This is not saying much since, thanks to the actions of Rover's Chinese investors last year, most Midlanders consider Longbridge to be within quite a comfortable spitting distance of China, thank you very much. No, we haven't forgotten yet. Check back in another year.

Double Deal week is over so there are few body doubles among the contestants today, although for no apparent reason, Shirley is dressed as an apple tree. She wears a green top over beige trousers and tops off the whole affair with a large and distinctive pair of apple-green earrings rejected by Pat Butcher as too garish.

Shirley's admirable philosophy is that "you get out of life what you put into it," and she admits to being something of a gambler. She is accompanied by her friend Pat in the audience and a small brass bear which she sits on the desk. If only she had reversed their positions...

The formalities completed, Shirley's eyes go down for a full house.

Round 1

  • Shirley begins with her neighbour Ryan in the West Wing, who opens box 14 to reveal £1,000.
  • Pierre est le suivant, avec boîte 17 qui montre le €22,000. In sterling, this is £15,000. Box 17, for some reason, is now seen as unlucky. I recall hearing that the number 17 is unlucky in Italy, but this may be fiction. This has nothing to do with DOND.
  • Shirley turns to Alan and box 1: £10.
  • Sticking with birthday numbers (a gift to potential identity thieves in the Rednal area, should any be watching...), Shirley goes for her aunt Betty's cat's sister's birthday. Or something. Janelle opens box 9 to show £50.
  • Su Pollard is chosen early, as her tear ducts are subject to a hosepipe ban and the producers can't take the chance: box 7 contains the £5,000.

The banker takes his sweet time as Shirley waffles on about something. Despite removing three red numbers, Shirley receives a generous offer of £8,300. Showing signs of having been coached by the crew, she asks for opinions from everyone. There are mutterings of assent that this is a good offer. Shirley needs little time to think, however, before declaring firmly: "No deal." She turns to the audience and turns up the volume.

Noel invites the Rednal Banshee to write down her target in his book. She obliges without shrieking.

Round 2

  • New boy Nick is chosen to reveal the first sum of the second round. He is an tall, burly fellow with a tattoo, and Noel can't help but describe him and the equally imposing Connell as "Monica's minders" as they stand on either side of her. Box 3 contains £250.
  • Ashok is next: box 19 contains £1.
  • Tall, blonde Linda E is still wearing an Alice band and continues to bear a close resemblance to David Beckham. We go to the break and when we return, she opens box 10 to reveal the biggest sum so far: £35,000.

Five of the six highest sums are still in play. The banker is suitably impressed with another strong round, and offers £16,000. Noel relates that the banker believes he cannot rely on every game to go wrong, referring to the collapse of Wayne's world yesterday. No partying on there. Shirley turns to Ryan for advice: he counsels her to carry on but adds that he knows she wants "a little more": surely this is misguided, but nobody comments on it. Shirley's mind is made up: "No deal." She squawks some more at the audience.

Round 3

  • Shirley asks Black Country Mark to open box 2: he mutters something which may have been "Good luck" and reveals £100.
  • Amy is next: box 4 contains £20,000. There are groans and then hesitant applause.
  • Finally in this round, Buddy opens box 11: the 1p is struck from the board. Shirley shows off her fillings as she loudly bellows her approval.

The banker is naughty and picks up on Ryan's earlier remark. I am vindicated: despite a very strong third round, he increases the offer by "a little," as per Ryan's instruction. It now stands at £17,500. Up in the audience, Pat advises the world that Shirley's husband Jim built his own narrowboat and is known as "the Commodore". Well, Shirley's game is certainly at the red end of the spectrum, even if she has taken the humble apple as her colour of the day. By the time Noel asks her the question, Shirley has already decided: "No deal."

Round 4

  • Roy opens box 6: 10p. More hollering from Shirley is accompanied by the familiar fist-wave, a manoeuvre first brought to us by the equally demure and retiring Eileen.
  • Sally is next with box 12: £3,000.
  • Inevitably, Noel calls a break before Melanie can open box 15. Equally inevitably, it seems, box 15 reveals £100,000. Noel quaintly describes this as "a pain in the bumpty," which is assuredly not a phrase heard often in Rednal.

The banker takes his sweet time and eventually calls to offer £21,000. It is clear that Pat thinks Shirley should deal, given the history of recent games. Noel reminds her about Jennifer's £120,000 win, but impresses that the £21,000 offer is real money. Obviously torn, Shirley stares at the board and decides: "No deal."

Round 5

Noel bangs on a bit more about history in the making. Nobody really listens.

  • Lynda B is next. She bears a quite uncanny resemblance to Myfanwy the lesbian barmaid from Little Britain, best known for her coarse line in anatomical description. Shirley looks understandably nervous about asking Lynda to open her box: box 13 contains £750.
  • Sue opens box 5: £500. The Rednal Banshee is back with a vengeance: her howling pierces the studio and awakens some spirits in a nearby graveyard.
  • Shirley completes the round with Vic and box 22: £5. Shirley hugs Noel, who is too close to avoid his fate.

An all-blue fifth round leaves the board with the following sums: 50p, £10,000, £50,000, £75,000 and £250,000. A huge offer is inevitable: when it comes, it is a mammoth £55,000.

Shirley turns to Black Country Mark and asks him for advice. In the same way that the Big Brother producers subtitle Glyn and Imogen speaking in Welsh, Channel 4 should be obliged to subtitle Black Country Mark for the benefit of non-native speakers, even those of us who have worked in Walsall. He chunters unintelligibly in pure Yamyam, but his last word is unquestionably "Deal." Mark's is one of the few British dialects in which the word "Deal" is made up of two syllables: I just thought I'd mention that as part of a crash course for whoever gets to write about his game.

The audience is asked for its views. Inevitably the students decide Shirley should carry on. Pat would deal, saying that the Commodore would kill her if she advised otherwise. Connell, apparently also a Midlander, insists that Shirley's last decision was more of a gamble than this.

Noel asks the question and Shirley's blaring voice fails her for probably the first and only time in her adult life. Eventually it returns: "No deal." Shirley declares she will "never be sat here again." Pat looks horrified.

Round 6

  • In what is now a truly gripping game, Paul is chosen: box 21 reveals £75,000.
  • Monica, happily between her minders, opens box 18: £10,000. A chant of "Easy, easy, easy" breaks out, led by Su Pollard attempting to prove her worth as a Yellowcoat.
  • With a choice of Connell and Bianca (who has been left till last a lot lately), Shirley can make or break her game. She opts for Connell and box 8: the tension is unbearable as he breaks the seal... and reveals £250,000.

Shirley has her head in her hands. Connell apologises for some reason. Su Pollard's head hits the desk, just as it did last Thursday. She has been at the Toilet Duck again. Noel reassures Shirley that she had been brave to play on at the last offer, although his words cut little ice with an axe-faced contestant.

With 50p and £50,000 left on the board, the banker offers a decidedly generous £20,000. This reflects his respect for the gutsy way Shirley has played the game. Noel suggests that when the £250,000 is finally won, it will be by someone with only a fraction of Shirley's courage. I doubt this makes her feel any better as she is obliged to accept the offer: "Deal."

Endgame

There is unfinished business: Shirley's box 16 contains £50,000. This is probably inevitable, but Shirley really had very little choice but to deal at £20,000. Bianca opens box 20 to reveal the 50p and conclude the game.

Noel looks into his book and sees that Shirley's target was £20,000. She can, at least, go back to Rednal with her desired sum.

This was a thoroughly engaging game of DOND. Shirley required close attention to the volume button, but her zest and her conviction that her box contained the big one shone from the screen. It seemed we had barely got to know her since she strolled along last week, but when the show's epitaph is written, Shirley's game will likely prove unforgettable.

Shirley won £20,000.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Wayne's Game Report

By Olivia, my favourite youngest daughter

Noel appears on the screen. I must say his shirt isn’t too bad today .He’s managed to stay away from the dodgy patterns. Welcome to the dream factory he says as we wait to find out whose game it is today. A few jokes about cleaning the chair after the games being between a box and a hard place gets the mood going and then were off.

Its Wayne the brain's turn to take the walk of wealth today, he strides to his throne with a big grin on his face and, for some unknown reason, two red boxes.

We are told that the second box is a little gift for an important person in Wayne’s game. A lovely thought says Noel quite honestly.

In front of us sits Wayne Laken from Blackpool. With box number 4. Noel reads from his card that the bankers opinion on Wayne is that he’s a ‘fountain of opinion’, giving strong advice and maybe not too cleverly making himself stand out to the banker, which isn’t always a great idea.

Wayne’s lucky number is nine and we can be sure that the banker will use this in his own little game.

‘I’m just full of life’ he says a little unconvincingly and so he’s sent to take a walk for a bit of energy while Noel comments on his posture as any mother would. But Noel is not a mother so that doesn’t make sense!!

After a few dodgy jokes about Wayne’s building career the opening round is started with Mark and box number 3 with the 50p. Of course an immediate lift and for the viewers the game is off.

Second is Ash with box number 11 and a not so pleasing £15,000. The positive mood in the studio is slightly weakened but Wayne moves on quickly. Third is Linda, box 1 and £50,000 is blown out of the game. The audience do the expected sharp intake of breath but Wayne, who is now living up to his ‘full of life’ comment just laughs it off and moves on. For some reason he feels he has to take box 17 with Ryan which produces the £5,000 and to end the round, Melanie and box 14 gives us the £1,000

Wayne says with rationality that he feels it wasn’t a great round but there’s a lot of blues to play with, and he’s right. However Noel feels that the Banker will do something quite horrible and he will do throughout the game. He answers the phone. ‘Good afternoon it’s Wayne’s Wednesday’, after that I expected Noel to take the bankers order.

‘The day has come.’ Says Noel as he imitates the banker’s voice and steals Wayne’s seat while Wayne giggles in the background. ‘He’s grinning when he’s winning’. Playing Wayne’s lucky number the offer is £9.99. This just shows the viewers that this is going to be a very interesting game and so after some hissing and booing, and some mock hard thinking Wayne replies with No Deal – of course.

Round two starts off with some more antics from Noel, who I’m beginning to think maybe a bit of a drama queen but no one else could do his job so I won’t complain. Shirley opens Box 21 and reveals the £500 followed by Sue and box 12 with the £100 greeted by cheers from the audience. Wayne is spot on. Monica and box 18 are chosen next. Noel is wary that Monica is wearing red and so we are told to come back after the break to see if it bears any relevance.

The break comes on and Paul from the west wing tells us in a slightly ‘I’m reading this from a piece of paper’ voice that we could win the contents of the blue boxes if we bothered to phone in. After the break we see that Monica’s red top is not relevance and the 1p is taken from the game definitely enhancing the mood in the studio.

‘How can we get him up from £9.99.’ asks Noel reminding us of the shocking offer from the banker. He has increased all the way to £999 more hissing and air sucking but then we were told that Noel has finished his sentence yet and we should add 19 thousand to the offer. A whopping second offer. Noel comments that nobody has ever walked at this point, and at £19,999, Wayne doesn’t either and says no deal and with conviction.

After that offer the pressure is on. Round three and Linda begins with box 19 and the £3,000. Not a blue but it’s alright comments Noel. Janelle with box 16 tragically reveals the £250,000 with the studio in complete shock but Wayne just moves on and more cheers are heard as we for once forget about the quarter mil and see the £750.

Noel asks Amy, subjecting her to attention from the banker. Trying not to make herself too obvious she states that he will come down but not back down to £9.99.
Noels feelings are that this game has a strange feel to it and after thinking about it I feel the same way. Taking Mega-Nasty as a compliment the bankers offer was £9,999. Not a bad offer but along way from £19,999.


No deal says Wayne and looks eager to move on.

Buddy starts the next round with box 22 and the £1. Sally next with box 15 and, Oh dear, the £75,000. It’s happened again says Noel and once again Wayne moves on fast.
After the break we get some antics from Vic this time rather than Noel,(makes a nice change), the £100,000 is taken out the game. Damn that Vic he’s such a trouble maker!

It was, as Noel nicely put it, a destructive round! Sue feels she can’t speak, although to be perfectly honest it doesn’t look like that happens to her much.

The banker is commissioning a portrait of himself standing on Wayne while hes lying on the floor with a Bankers victory flag in his hand. Maybe not a great work of art but some people are just different. The offer is £1,999. No deal and straight away


Not a great board for the start of the next round but Paul opens box 16 and after thinking blue, reveals a blue. The £10 is taken off the board. ‘We’re not going to see red at all’ says Noel. Next up is Penny with box number 7 and the £35,000, not easily ignored and followed by the £20,000, the highest number left on the board.
Noel lied! A very bitter end to the 4th round.

Poor Wayne he has a weak smile but he cant hide the look of devastation hiding behind it. According to the banker ‘contrary to the impression he gave he was dreading this game as he was sure Wayne would take a lot of money from him’
But with the offer £999 this was an all or peanuts game. Wayne asks sue but she’s useless and after a nail biting wait, a surprise for everyone, ‘full of life’ Wayne the brain, deals. Wayne says Deal after a nerve wrecking wait. A crushed man.

Noel states that there’s an ‘aroma of defeat in the air.’

Now it’s just picking the last big number, £10,000 and Amy and box 20 does that for Wayne. Now its just left to the boring bit where we pick off the last of the blues to end the game. Pierre and Box 13 have the 50p. The bankers offer would have been £99 carrying on the 9 theme he also admits that he might hold off the portrait as even though it was an emotionally crushing game for Wayne he has still beaten the banker. Wayne would have gone all the way. He then decides to expose what was in his little red box: a dummy for the banker, the sucker!! Noel after worrying about what exactly he was pulling out of the box uncovers £250 in Wayne’s box.

A devastating game for Wayne but he’s enjoyed himself.
Nice for him since we are all emotional wrecks at the moment!

Wayne won £999

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Yvonne's game

Noel is looking particularly flowery today – people should be turning over in their droves to watch the footie. Only us few connoisseurs remain blinded to, (or by?) his outfit.

Yvonne is randomly selected, a vision in purple carrying box 16. Philip Robert & Amy are her children and one of those has given her grandchildren who she has brought pics of. She definitely doesn’t look old enough, although she has a look of the older Sheila Hancock about her - with Latin twist perhaps. It turns out that she is on a respite break from caring for her invalid husband for the last 15 years. The now legendary donders socialising has been a real treat for the last three weeks and she thanks all her fellow contestants for helping make this break brilliant. She has only ‘random selection’ as her system.

Round 1
Ashok, box 1 - £3,000
Pierre, box 22 – 50p
Mark, Box 17 - £50,000 This number is apparently unlucky in Italy, it is their version of our 13 explains Pierre.
Mel, box 21 - £50
Monica, (newbie) box 14 - £100,000
I like Yvonne, she does look a genuinely optimistic and happy person and appears to be well liked by all in the studio too. The banker requested she talk to him and despite being terribly polite to her the offer is £1800. Yvonne will just “carry on” the reply is no deal.

Round 2
Sally, box 8 - £1
Vic, box 10 – 10p - with an illusive smile called for by Noel.
Bianca, box 2 - £20,000
“Never mind” Yvonne tells us – she expects the banker to look after his money and the offer to be low. The offer is £7,000 which is surprisingly high all things considered. Yvonne thinks there are a couple more deals yet – no deal to £7k.

Round 3
Connel, box 15 - £5,000
Jenelle, box 4 - £250,000 she is wearing a strange black glove affair. Is this representative of a wannabe black widow or does she just have strange tastes in fashion.
Amy, box 3 - £1,000
‘Tricky’ is the banker’s take on this one – he requests Wayne’s opinion which causes a few chuckles around the studio. £6,500 to £7,000 says Wayne the brain. The banker agrees – the offer is £6,500. Yvonne is pretty transparent and doesn’t need to tell us that this is a lot of money to her. The audience is asked for their opinion and they seem to think she should turn this one down too. She is persuaded and the answer is a no deal. I really don’t know where I would be on this one as I know the outcome whilst writing today which does put a different slant on things.

Round 4
Ryan, box 18 - £75,000 – loud groans from those audience members who urged her to go on.
Shirley, box 8 – 1p A bit of a reprieve
Pennie, box 11 - £15,000 – despite Pennie’s prayers
There are 6 blues and 2 reds left on the board – the mood is not good and the offer is a cruel £1,500. Yvonne is in no position to be brave. However it seems she is stronger than she looks and the swift reply to £1,500 is no deal.

Round 5 – The quickie.
Box 5, Paul - £500
Box 20, Roy - £750
Box 12, Wayne - £5
At last the all blue round – the board is looking much healthier – 3 blues and 2 reds. Yvonne, looking very washed out and a bit tearful asks for Wayne’s ‘the brain’s’ prediction on this £9,200 says Wayne - £4,000 says the wicked banker – hiss boo. She asks for a sweep. The panel in the main, sits on the fence, for Yvonne’s own circumstances. Mark has a heart to heart across the studio appealing to Yvonne to think hard about this one. An agonisingly long wait is followed by a decision to deal.

Hypothetical round 6
Box 6, Al - £250
Box 7, Sue - £100
Box 19, Linda - £10 – Another all blue round - just when she didn’t need one.

Don’t feel bad, Yvonne is telling all her new friends over the noise of the phone ringing. She is still smiling whilst putting her fingers in her ears so not to hear the offer. £20,000 say’s Noel gutted for her. “But I’m here and I’ve got £4,000 you can’t go back”. She tells him. She would have dealt there and that she would not have taken a swap. Noel then reveals £10,000 in her box 16. There you are she say’s that’s only £6,000 I lost. What an amazing lady – what a lucky husband.

Once again she tells everyone how her ‘respite’ has been fantastic.

Yvonne won £4,000

Tonights report...

...will be delayed unfortunately. The best laid plans and all that, I need to get back and watch a recording so the report wil not be published until around 9.00pm.

Our apologies, normal service will be resumed tomorrow.

Iain

Monday, June 19, 2006

Houston, we have a problem...

I hope I'm wrong, but I think Double Deal week has left us with a discrepancy between the shows on Channel 4 and More 4 on the same day.

Tuesday sees Frank and Eileen's Sunday and Monday shows on More 4, but from Wednesday evening onwards, More 4 reverts to one show per day (so it's Channel 4's Tuesday show on More 4 on Wednesday). However, there is one solitary 3:15 am broadcast, to be shown on More 4 at 3:15 am on Thursday morning. If this is not a repeat of the Wednesday 6:10 pm show then we are back on track for the same-day repeat; otherwise, the More 4 viewers like me will be watching yesterday's show. I hope for the best outcome. But why is it on at 3:15 am? Adult DOND?

Has anyone seen the answer to this puzzle anywhere?

Eileen's game

Sorry folks I missed the intro to this game due to my laptop getting its knickers in a twist. Spookily enough this appears to be in tune with the theme for today’s show.

Eileen, a cleaning manager from Doncaster is chosen, carrying over box 7. Sadly the only part of the early preamble I recall from my panic in trying to get the computer to talk to me, is Eileen having been on daytime TV for being ‘hip’ and wearing a g-string at age 50.

Round 1
Sally, box 3 - £50
Al, box 9 - £5
Linda box 2 - £1
Yvonne, box 1 - £100,000
Sue, box 6 - £10

Nevertheless, Eileen is already annoying me (alright it could have been the laptop set me off) with her regular Aaaaayyyys and Ooooohs in keeping with the clients of most Blackpool bingo halls. She apparently thinks well of the banker as the phone rings. I don’t believe her and don’t believe he is fooled by her fake bravado. He suggests an offer of £250,000 to see her knickers, which causes a few polite chuckles around the studio. The offer is £5,250 – the reply is no deal.

Round 2
Bianca, box 13 – (without showing her knickers) is £250,000
Ashok, box 16 - £3,000
Shirley, box 14 - £100 – another loud Yeeeeaaaa from the lady in the seat.
Noel declares Eileen didn’t need £250k did she? Yes was the reply, however the £75k will be enough. The offer at this stage is £1,250 – once again it’s a no deal from Eileen.

Round 3
Mark, box 12 - £750. I really am hating this yelling and wish she would stick to just reds.
Connel, box 4 – ‘Big soft giant’ has £10,000 and saves my ears from the inevitable shout.
Melanie, box 22 - £500. Ouch again, it is sounding now like a blade saw slicing through metal. It’s a good offer Eileen, please accept £12,500 and go home now. The audience is consulted and they all agree with me (not really) sadly it’s a no deal again.

Round 4
We motor on says Noel and the board is looking very good at this point.
Pierre, box 5 - £20,000
Paul, box 10 - £250
Ryan, box 20 – after the break – 1p. Yeeeeaaaaaa, Ooooooh Gerrout – its gone wow Pass the sick bucket please.

The new offer is £16,500 please, please, take it. Wayne slaggs off the banker saying this is a load of rubbish and the phone rings back instantly Noel is asked to pass on the message – you just made a big error. Eileen by the way is looking a bit green around the gills – matching her lovely mushy pea’s coloured top. The answer is – a very brave if a little quiet – no deal.

Round 5
Wayne, box 15 - £5,000
Amy, box 8 - £50,000
Jenelle box 21 – 10p. Eileen is fanning herself frantically.
Ashok predicts the offer will be low to keep Eileen gambling away her reds. The last offer is repeated - £16,500. Noel tries to bring reality into this one – I think he is trying to make her deal – perhaps his ears are hurting too. How brave is she? The question – the answer - Deal. Fair do’s says Noel and I do think he is right.

Hypothetical - Round 6
Linda, box 17 - £1,000
Vic, box 18 - £35,000
Roy, box 19 - £75,000 – Yeeeeeesssss. for the final time - thank goodness.
The offer would have been £3,500 – No deal.

The two remaining boxes have 50p and £15,000. Noel opens Eileen’s box 7 to reveal the 50p. He goes through the routine of congratulating Eileen for selling a box worth 50p for £16,500. The pressure seems to have got to Eileen by the end of the show as we see her broken down in tears – of relief.

Georgia has just suggested the studio could have got into the spirit a bit more by chanting ‘come on Eileen’. I agree.

Eileen won £16,500

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Frank's Game Report

the actors and jesters are here
the stage is in darkness and clear
and no-one is quite certain
on raising the curtain
whose play it is....
(Supertramp, Crime of the Century)

And then he is there, our friendly, bearded master of ceremonies, our faciltator, coach, friend, advisor, good conscience and bad - its our Noel. Can I detect a little redness around the eyes? Celebrating Noel?

Today it was Frank, enjoying his walk of wealth with box 10. Frank Markin from Macclesfield, Corporal Jones was alive and well and sitting in front of Noel, but as we were to find out, there were many personalities within Frank, including Professor Frank Unwin, master of gobbledeguk, Frank Marvin of the Shadows,and Frank Butcher, late of Albert Square. The Frank in front of us was a rocker, he had toured US air bases for 5 years in his twenties, leaving his job as an apprentice carpenter to chase his dream. Cheryl, his wife of 40 years was in the audience; you could just imagine her as a teenager looking up at Frank from the cheap seats with adoring eyes.

Now DOND for the most part is a show with life changing amounts of money which very few people actually attain, but tonight we were about to watch the game show equivalent of Karl Wallenda's tightrope walk across Niagra Falls. One of Frank's daughters was diagnosed with MS three years ago, Frank and Carol are looking at stem cell treatment costing £20,000 to get the job done. So the stakes were enormous. Frank is a part-time spiritualist, dead people speak to him in his dreams - apparently he had correctly foretold the deaths of three people in his dreams. He was happy with death, much of the preamble contained black humour, placing a very spooky air on the nights proceedings. To finish this off he had spoken to his dad (dead) in a dream, about three months ago, and was going to use his dad's army number for the first five boxes [The number was 1436146031].

Round one: Amy, box 1 - £10,000. 'Whats in the boxes is there already, so no crying, nothing that happens is your fault and I am not going to blame you', I am sure he was looking at Pennie. 'Well said Frank, but what he said is total rubbish, he will haunt you in your dreams', warned Noel. Pennie was next with box 4 - 10p - so she ws safe. Mark, box 3 - £750, and Frank cheered like a vicar at a football match. Vic was next with box 6 - £50 - 'Come on', said Frank. Yvonne, box 14 - £50,000. His dad's army numbers had not been too bad. Noel related the banker's latest funny, he has an estranged son, they don't talk because he is a charity worker. The offer was £6031, the last 4 digits of the army number that Frank did not use - clever old banker. 'No deal' said Frank, and sat back, his hands clasped between his knees, a la Parkinson.

Round two: He was flying solo now. Elvis Presley's birthday was the eighth, (did he know anyone who was still alive?) he went for Shirley and box 8 - £20,000. Then Al with box 7 - 50p.

After the break we re-capped Lucy's show - even three months after her game, she is still in the top four of our hit parade, and she will probably go up from there after this. Aileen was next on Frank's list, 'Aileen, whack out a blue', said Noel. She opened box 12 - £100,000. Cheryl thought he was doing ok, 'he knows what he is doing'. The offer was now £5000. Frank thought it was very fair. What do you think about this. 'Go for it'. I think she meant 'no deal' - Frank took it that way anyway.

Round three: Linda, box 18 - 1p. 'Yeah', said parson Frank, 'I think I will go with Melanie now', Noel looked across at her and licked his lips, 'yeah so will I'. Melanie didn't say 'no', she just opened her box 2 - £250,000. Frank was not smiling anymore. 'Concentrate on the £75k now Frank', said Noel from the other end of the studio, he was probably scribbling a telephone number for Melanie. After the break Bianca opened box 16 - £5000. The board had six blues against five reds, his best hope being the £75k with £35k in reserve. Corporal Jones was in his element, determined to go on, while Noel was trying to help him stop for the bankers call. Even after the offer of £2500, Frank was for going on immediately, without the need for question - the audience were in fits of laughter at Frank's confusion.

Round four: Sue, box 13 - £5. 'I am not as silly as I look', said Frank, 'don't take a vote on it Frank' said Noel stoking the audience. Box 5, Roy - £100. Wayne was going to be next. 'Aren't you going to ask his advice' asked Noel, referring to Wayne's perdiction that he had the £100k in the last game - he actually had the £10k. 'What was that part of ladies underwear on your head last night? asked Noel. Wayne blushed, 'I'd been given the booby prize', said Wayne as he collapsed over his box - maybe the fact that Noel knew this might explain his bloodshot eyes, had he finally gone to one of these crazy hotel parties? Wayne opened box 22 - £250. Kirsty was also on the show from the Hall of Fame, she was going to use her winnings to enhance her chest line, but we weren't allowed to find out if she had actually done it yet - never mind, she was still as gorgeous as ever (I wonder if I have time to learn cosmetic surgery). The offer was now £9500. 'I am thinking that £10,500 is a...', Noel corrected him,'its an old trick...'. Frank waffled on while Noel went to sleep on a lady's shoulder, not all of him, just his head. Eventually Frank was ready - 'no deal', he said, and he said it with courage. Cheryl seemed horrified.

Round five: 'Now come on, this is the serious part of the show', said Frank, the audience were falling about because Noel was pointing across at Cheryl's flushed face. In linking to the break he said 'you are watching decree nisi or no decree nisi, Cheryl is going to murder Frank if he gets this wrong'. After the break box 9 was £500 (I missed who had the box). Sally next with box 15 - £1000. 'This was planned you know' said Frank, smiling like Godfrey. Finally for the round he went for Linda, box 19 - £1. Now this was good - Frank had four reds against a single blue, and the £75k was still there. The banker said Matt, Kirsty and Lucy were the symbols of courage - and then he complemented Frank on his courage in taking on Cheryl. The offer now was £20,000 - this was what he needed for his daughter, surely he would deal. 'At the worst I could have £10 in here', said Frank trying to make sense of his position, Cheryl buried her head in her hands. Cheryl eventually shouted out, 'don't do it Frank'. Noel referred back to her comment at the end of round two, 'you mean go for it?' Cheryl looked slightly startled and then sent him an encrypted message - 'Its your game....Frank'. Of course he dealt, he was closer to death than he could possibly have realised, and Cheryl was louder than anyone else in cheering his decision.

Round six: Box 11 - £10. Ashok, box 21 - £15,000.Pierre, box 20 - £75,000. The offer would have been £12,000.

Frank had £35,000 in his box, but he didn't care. Connel had the missing £3000 in box 17.

I have no idea what Endemol would have done had Frank left with 1p, but this was a game where it was hard to laugh if you kept the big picture in mind - 'Frank come on down, lets see if you can win an operation which might just save your daughter's life'. I think I can just about remember a sketch along these lines in Monty Python - a show full of ideas that they thought funny because they were so impossible.

Anyway Frank won the amount they needed, and I wish them well.

Frank won £20,000.

Jennifer's Game - £120,000

Jennifer here - just joined this Blog. Thanks Iain for all your help!

First to correct a misconception – there was no contractual obligation to be part of the Hall of Fame programmes but we all got 5* dinner, B & B for our trouble and the chance to meet up with Noel and the production team again was just great. I wasn’t bored but strangely much more nervous than I had been in the chair. Editing programmes by half produces some weird effects. My facial expressions weren’t nearly that manic!

But this post is about my game, back on the 18th November, 2006.

I haven’t written about it anywhere else.

By the time I got in the chair I had decided that the skill was definitely all in the timing and apart from that, as I couldn’t influence the luck/random element of the game, I was going to relax and have fun with Noel - which I did. I wasn’t nervous at all which really surprised me.

I had a ‘pre-match’ strategy, a form of self hypnosis - to put myself in the right frame of mind I used affirmations in the days leading up to my programme. I trained my unconscious mind with frequent repetitions to find the low/blue numbers etc. I also decided it was important to trust my intuition. It seems to me that extremes of rationalization, or intuition, are doomed to failure in most aspects of life but a combination of both and using the right one in the right measure at the right time will always produce a good result. How good I had no idea and if I had then I would probably have been much more nervous.

I don’t like the idea of a pre-determined system of numbers to choose either. I preferred to wait until everyone had chosen their boxes and I was in the chair before deciding anything at all.

At one point I said: ‘When I feel drawn to a box the problem is whether that is because it is blue so choose it or its red – stay away. I am focussing on the blue side of the board so that will be what I am drawn to.’ The next box was blue! Also when Andy said in my last round: ‘It’s 10p – say it!’ I did and it was. Go figure?!

I had a letter from a viewer asking if Andy knew what was in his box. No way. When the contestants get on to the set the first thing that happens is someone comes along the row with a bag full of numbered ping pong balls for us to choose from. The boxes are already stacked on the floor before we arrive and the independent adjudicator (a solicitor) plus security guys are watching them keenly and have been ever since the boxes were sealed. So it really is foolproof.

Something very strange that didn’t make the final cut was to do with my final choice of box in the 3rd round when I said: ‘I am drawn to 14 & 20 (next to each other) and I don’t know which to choose. No, now something tells me to leave 20 alone.’ I chose 14 and any rising tension melted at that point because I was certain from then on that 20 contained the £250k - which turned out to be the case. Rita whose box it was had been sure of that from the moment it was put in front of her too and was scared that I would pick it. How do you explain that one? I don’t. It gave me the confidence to turn down the £33k though – as long as I left box 20 alone I felt completely safe and my excitement began to grow.

I was the first person ever to write in Noel’s book! Another first was that until my game he had always referred to the ‘right’ and ‘left’ wings. My sweep for advice at the penultimate offer was cut from the final edit, however when Noel asked me ‘Right wing first?’ I told him it was horrible standing over there and being referred to as right-wing when my politics were left of centre and he changed it immediately to East & West. That’s my real claim to fame! :-)


So on to that £52k offer. Until then the highest amount ever won had been £33k. I had written £50k in the book. Why didn’t I take it? With my eyes closed a battle raged within me between commonsense - and something indescribable but so very strong which gave me the feeling I should trust and go one round more. (You should know that I was in poor health, stony broke with considerable debts and for the first time in my life – and the last I sincerely hope – had been on state benefits for almost a year…. SO TAKE IT YOU FOOL!!!) After what seemed an age, I opened my mouth to be sensible and say ‘Deal’. You can imagine how astonished I was at that point to hear ‘No Deal’ come from somewhere but definitely in my voice. I was in shock from that moment on and played the rest of the game in a kind of trance. All the other contestants collapsed over their boxes or turned away in horror. I just sat there completely numb. All I could think is: ‘I’ve given up all control. Now what happens really isn’t up to me at all.’

During the next and final round this volcanic energy began to rise inside me with each selection as £500, 10p and then £100k were revealed. That left the £750 and the quarter of a million on the board. I just knew it wasn’t in my box although many times I had said to Noel (for the banker’s benefit) that I was sure it was. Each of those remarks hit the cutting room floor too. At that moment the volcano erupted in such a huge blast of excitement mixed with overwhelming joy and shock.

It was weeks before I felt the last effects of that pleasurable shock leave me. The next day I left the hotel and immediately checked into another one in Bristol. I knew that I would be unsafe to drive until I felt a bit more ‘normal’ so I spent the day in bed sleeping, watching TV and enjoying room service.

If I could have been certain of getting the swop I just might have gone further and been the first to win the biggy. At that time the swop wasn’t always being offered though so I didnt dare risk it and I am so glad. Why? Well £120,000 was a marvellous amount to win: I am debt free, off benefits and financially secure. I’ve a new car (Fiesta) and have booked a holiday next winter to the Maldives. I am working part time from home again which I really enjoy. I had the best possible outcome for me and my privacy was preserved.

Apart from the friends and relatives I had told to watch I have only ever been recognised once from the programme. The 1p-ers have had much more local fame than I have! I had just one letter forwarded to me from a lady wanting to know where to swim with dolphins J If I try and explain it all – including the protection of my anonymity– I know some of you may laugh when I say that my guardian angel must have been at work. Cynics will say there is no such thing but I can (and do) only wonder.

I still watch every game hoping that someone will knock me off my perch soon. It isnt as lonely at the top since Gaz/Gary opened his box to reveal £100k. Perhaps we can hire a neighbouring phone box for our AGM too? :-)

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Lee's Game

Noel greets the wings and welcomes us to the dream factory as usual. Today's shirt is surprisingly boring being a plain bluey-grey colour with a non obvious pattern.
His speech runs along the lines of how the players have to ask themselves if they have that extra bit of "oomph" to risk everything and win a life changing sum of money. He reminds us that this afternoon Debbie ran out of "oomph" and didn't win the top prize.

Whilst the selector does it's selecting, his words are "The show shines a light on the individual that sits in the crazy chair." And that individual is Lee.

Lee seems happy as he bounces around like he's already won the top prize.
To counter this he jokes he wanted to be a librarian when he was young. He says he likes to get people pumped up and you get the impression he's just an average outgoing guy off the street.
He's a stocky fella - a publican (pub owner) from Kent. His fiance Tracy is here, and they're planning to get married on Aug 25th - but "don't worry, it's all paid for" he directs towards the banker.
He states he's happy with life and would like "a couple of quid." He considers himself very lucky because of his fiance and children. He supports Chelsea and likes English cricket, he's not superstitous but has a few numbers in reserve.
Finally, his photos are of his fiance and daughter.

Noel points out that Friday night had box 22, Saturday afternoon had box 22, and now Lee has box 21. Could that be a sign? Who knows.

Round 1
  • Pierre - £500. He's happy with that.
  • Amy (Chosen because of her lovely smile - and who wouldn't) - 10p. Lee greets it with a very excitable response.
  • Shirley - £10,000. "It's alright" he responds quickly.
  • Al the fireman - £250. "yeeees, come oooon" shouts Lee.
  • Ashok finishes the round giving us £1,000. Another bout of "come oooon".
Noel asks if it's safe to return. with the air coming out of Lee's mouth you can't blame him.

Marcus is back! He states that "I'm brilliant so I am" and that everything's going well. He's gotten used to people stopping him in the street and taking photos and says "he's back where he belongs."
Marcus gives advice to Lee: Don't get nervous, just have as much fun as you can. Lee thanks him for the good advice.

Noel reminds us of this afternoon's result. The banker will be happy buying a box worth 250k for 15k.
Unsurpisingly, the banker opens with: "I'm a little bit tipsy" - on 3 x year 1904 bottles of wine. He's "drinking one, and fondling the other two". He has Lee down as the most comitted 'no dealer' he's ever seen.

The first offer: £7,000... nope, £8,000... nope, £9,000... £10,000... nope, £11,000. One of Noel's little teasers to gauge the response. Lee looked happy at 7, says 10 would be very very good and 11 is "a crackin offer". Even so, he made his decision very quickly - no deal. Another shout to motivate the room sends Noel flying back in fear for his shirt!

Round 2
  • Frank - £50,000. A quiet hiss takes over the studio and Lee looks evidentally miffed.
  • Paul - £100
Noel reminds us that Lee has just received "the 2nd highest opening offer ever" and asks Ryan what will happen next. Ryan correctly predicts it's time for a break.

After the break Saj talks us into Marcus's show.
Channel 4 show another fantastic montage of Marcus's show. If you need reminding, he was the camp guy who turned DOND into a chat show to help make his decisions - he really really enjoyed it. £8, £16.5, £23, £31 (which he took). He had £100 in the box.

Back to Lee's game now.
  • Ryan - £5,000. Lee is very fast to tell us that's alright.

The banker acknowledges that Lee is doing well and he's pleased to see Marcus. Marcus says hi and the banker says "right back at cha" under the premise it was "two chums having fun" (something Marcus said in his show).
Noel sounds surprised at the 2nd offer. It matches Marcus's 2nd offer: £16,500.

Lee says it's a very good offer and decides to go for a sweep. It looks like he's already decided - I think he just wants a bit of egging on. He only does the west wing who basically say he knows what he's gonna do and not to deal. He doesn't deal.


Round 3 and we're not in special number territory just yet.
Bianca - £35,000
Sal - £20,000
Linda E - £100,000

Lee tries not to show it but it's obvious he's a bit miffed. He works through it by clapping the crowd up.

Noel reminds us the quarter mill is still in play. Marcus says "It's still all to play for".
Noel tells us of Lee's dreams: Opening the batting at Lords, Scoring for Chelsea, Starring opposite Ray Winston in a Western, Showing Gordon Ramsey how to cook and swear, Taking a huge amount of money off the banker.

The banker describes the round as "truly dreadful" and gives Lee the chance to leave "with dignity" offering £10,000. Lee says he wasn't expecting it. With 7:4 blue:red I'd have to agree. Though 250k and 75k are still in play.

He sweeps the East Wing. Each of the players says carry on. He then asks his fiance who looks quite miffed that he didn't ask her first. She doesn't respond.

It's a no deal.

Round 4
Wayne - £75,000. A quiet hiss goes round.
New player Linda B - £50
Mel - 1p. He's ecstatic, his fiance is chuffed too.

Noel points out that £15k and £250k are still there. £15 being what Debbie won and £250k being what she could have won. He then says that the banker probably realises the chances of 250k being on the table two games in a row is unlikely.

The banker calls and states he thinks Lee doesn't believe the 250k is there. Lee replies by saying "it's all random so why can't it be there?" He looks genuine.
The banker gives a compliment and puts the offer up to a whopping... £10,001

Lee states he's had some "nice offers" and that they've all been good for him. He weighs 10k up against 250k. Asks the audience to stand if they'd deal. Not one person does.
The question is asked and he .... deals! His fiance is happy, he looks quite shocked he said it.

The reason: He lied - the wedding isn't paid off. He says he doesn't have to worry about it and they've got money for the honeymoon as well. Nice to see the mind games reversed.

We play on.

Hypothetical Round 5
Eileen - £10
Vic - £5. Very little noise in the studio.
Roy - £3,000

Le looks a bit miffed. His fiance seems less bothered.

Offer: £25,000. The banker claims that's the £10,000 + £15,000 that Debbie had.
Lee's not sure if he'd deal or not but Tracy is very sure - she'd deal.

Noel uses the usual big words stating it had been an extraordinary Saturday and Lee could have made a catastropic deal.

Hypothetical Round 6
Sue - 50p. Lee says it's not funny anymore. Noel throws some salt in by reminding him the 250k is still there.
Yvonne - £250,000. It's a relief to see Lee jump around again - he's been pretty quiet for a while.
Mark - £750.

With £1 and £15,000 on the board the offer is £4,001. Lee says wouldn't have dealt. I'm not so sure I believe him.

He has ... £15,000 in his box.


It was a bit of a rollercoaster for Lee. Very excitable at the start, a little subdued during the mid section and he was really wondering where that 250k was - until it was found - then he was back to his overexcitable self. He seems a bit miffed he didn't win 15k or 25k, but still, 10k is pretty good. It'll go towards a nice wedding and honeymoon.

The banker has won this Saturday but there's always tomorrow.


On an unrelated note I'd like to say that this report has taken a lot longer to produce than I thought it would. Despite typing as the show went along and tidying bits up during the breaks it's still taken me 40 mins after the show has finished! I suddenly have a new found respect for Sue doing this every day.

Lee won £10,001