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.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Can Endemol get DOND back on track?

Double deal week has been like a super volcano, where effects continue long after the event. We are struggling to develop relationships with contestants, when they walk to the front, I am almost left wondering if I have seen them before. Noel is exhausted, his phrases tired; players too seem battle hardened and weary, jaded responses to losing power 5 boxes saying it all.

In the Atlanta Olympics the UK team kept losing and saying it didn't matter, they'd had a great time and that was what counted - we the great British public said 'NO - they were there to win, they had failed, and that was what counted!' We needed our athletes to win victoriously or feel desolute in defeat. So it is with DOND - it was heart-breaking to watch Clare crying her eyes out as she left with £1500, but it was complelling. Watching Gaz win £100,000 was fantastic because of Gaz's courage and the reactions of Gaz, his wife, the audience and everyone else; the program finished and I walked around with a good feeling for the rest of the night. But now we are in the land of mediocrity and frankly my dear, I don't give a damn.

What makes DOND different is the relationship that builds between the contestants and us the audience, and this has largely been achieved through Noel's mastery of the art of compare. But now Noel is tired, and the show is tired, and we are tired - we probably need a break, and we certainly need something to restore the tension and excitement of shows earlier in the year.


primrose said...

Dear icifm, I totally agree with you . The show has lost it's ZING. It's hard for Noel to find something new to do every day . Three Shows a day makes it as hard for him as it is for you to keep up with all you have to do. At least you have your little helpers ie.Steve etc. Noel doesn't even have Mr Blobby any more

bairy said...

As you probably know, I'm rather cheesed with Noel's incredibly repetative phrasing and over-the-top dramatising so I obviously agree that it is running into trouble.

Recently I have been a little less concerned with actually watching the show through (especially the speech at the start) and I have to admit when they were opening the boxes the other day I wondered who the hell most of them were - an after effect of double deal week.

That aside the show does suffer daily. It's very well engraned into the channel 4 schedule and that's not a good thing because it is the same more or less every day:
- Noel yaks on about the courage to carry on and dealing at the right time (which are generally opposites)
- Someone comes out
- They open 5 boxes
- The banker calls and lays some needless insults. The player dismiss the first offer
- The player opens 3 more boxes and dismisses the second offer
- Before the third box there's a repeated pun about the break coming up
- They open 3 more and only about 10% of players think about the third offer
- Occasionally the banker will apparently whine that no one's taking his offers seriously. And you kinda agree but then you think how much he's making in adverts and phonecalls (not to mention all the other Endamol projects) and you just think he should grow up.

So really it's 4:35 (20 mins in) before you know they're actually going to take the offer seriously. And meanwhile Noel quizzes them about losing a big number in the first round and you know no one cares since they don't consider an offer until half the board has gone.

So I suppose the only truly exciting bit (aside from finding out about them) is between 4:35 and 4:55. And most of the time that's a standard playout. There are exceptions such as Morris's game, Gaz's game, and the really entertaining characters (such as the very funny Pat/primrose). But generally speaking you get to the end of the game and kinda think "that's nice" and go do something else. Or at least I do.

So what can be done? Well, Iain made a post a while back about how the game used to be a nice quiet civilised game rather than the hyped up Jerry Springer-esque show it is now (boo the banker, cheer the blues with far too much excitement, chant "No-el No-el No-el" every time he says something in the player's favour.. okay not yet but you can see it coming).
The problem with that is we Brits don't like insane amounts of unnecessary noise and it does kinda make it rediculous to watch.

There is a feature of the Australian version where each player guesses how much they have in their case (equiv. to box) and if they're right they get a bonus. I like that idea though it works better there as it's just a casual gameshow. If you don't get to play on the day then you go home and no one really cares.

I also like the idea of a catchup. What happened to the players afterwards. Sure the hall of fame during double deal week was nice but it wasn't exactly interesting to reconnect with old players since only the most basic of questions was asked. So Kirsty got boob implants... so what? She won 75k and turned down 125k, we want to know what she did with the rest of the cash. Did JD give the £1000 to Lucy as he had promised? (I understand from wikipedia that he did) What did he do with the 39k - I know he was in debt, is he clear now...

I don't really know what the show needs and honestly I'm starting to care less and less, I think Endamol need to have a good think about how they're going to run any third series or it'll end up like Millionaire where you'll only watch it if nothing's on the other side.

Adie said...

This is serious stuff - anyone who comes to this site is by definition a "fanatic," and even we're getting tired out... I'm personally convinced the game is heading inexorably towards Millionaire/Weakest Link ubiquity, and inevitable inertia, which is fine for Endemol's and C4's ad revenues, but not so good for The Show (be honest, when was the last time you had a spontaneous chat with someone about those other programmes?)

However, here are some quick ideas in no order of perference...

1) Make the show shorter - 30 minutes will be brisk, entertaining, flab-free, and automatically address most of the issues the game currently has. Alternatively, tighten everything up by ending the game as soon as the player deals, and instead of opening everyone's box, just open the player's to see if they really did "Beat The Banker", then move onto the next game straight away, even if the show ends mid-game to be continued tomorrow. At least this would get around the automatic break after box 7 syndrome...

2) Give Noel a rest - he does a great job and we all like him, but there's only so much he can do with the limited format. A few weeks off would let him recharge himself, and it would be really interesting to see what a different presenter (please don't ask me who) would bring to the game.

3) No more "Double-Deal" weeks! The effects of the last ones should wear off in a week or so, but Endemol shouldn't let it happen again...

jh said...

I think the quality of "characters" has picked up again recently, although some of them we haven't seen the best of until their game. And Noel's certainly involving those in the wings again like he used to, after that element almost disappeared for a while (or maybe just hit the cutting room floor).

But after well over 200 shows it takes more to make a game stand out from those that have gone before. We've had some decent games, but haven't had a truly ground-breaking one since Morris. More generous offers recently have certainly contributed to that, as has the frequent early exit of the £250k - we're long overdue an in-play final pair containing the quarter million.

Some spoilers/rumours I've heard suggest a few dramatic ones to come before the break though!