Absurdly, I just filmed an episode of this god-awful quiz show. I am absolutely not a fan - but there was an ad in the student newspaper, and I thought it sounded like it might be quite an entertaining way to kill a few hours (auditioning, that is) and next thing you know the ginger witch has her beady eye assessing just how much she can verbally rough me up.
I got to the final four, which isn't bad, I suppose, though I was mildly irritated with myself for fucking up pretty badly in my last round - having been the strongest link a couple of times, I had an absolute shocker and got three of four questions wrong. And £2850 would have come in handy. (The giant wanted to grind up Jack's BONES! Not his thumbs! Not his fucking, fucking thumbs!) Never mind.
Slightly interesting things about The Weakest Link:
- Anne Robinson is not any nicer when the camera is off. I'm sure she's a fairly ordinary woman at home, but between takes, she keeps the bitch persona up absolutely.
- The reason people do lame little drawings on the boards they have to write the names on is that you have to keep writing for fucking ages so they can get shots of all of you, and if you stop the floor manager shouts at you. The alternative is to write over the name again and again, as I did - which makes you look like a psychopath.
- If you're standing on the edge of the semi-circle, as I was - they do it by height - there's a terrifying moment when the crane camera sweeps in from far away and sits about six inches from your nose, looking for all the world like it's assessing whether to reveal its hidden machine guns or not; then a little red light flashes and you have to introduce yourself, or, later on, say who you've voted for. The camera does rather seem to be alive: it's hard to put into words just how ridiculously disconcerting this is.
- You hang out with your fellow contestants for a while before hand, which makes it significantly harder to vote them off.
- If there is ANYTHING you don't want to reveal about yourself which ANYONE else in the world knows about, it's probably best not to go on the show. I live in quite a big house, which I'm certainly not ashamed of, but, equally, don't bang on about either: though I didn't make any reference to this when the researcher called my up, mrs robinson knew, and found great comic potential in it. And I bet they edit out my witty retorts. Oh, God, I'm going to look like such a twat...
- When they interview you afterwards, they really really really pressure you to say bitchy things you don't really mean. Which doesn't make it any less my fault, admittedly, but the nation's going to hate me. Well, the one sixtieth of the nation that watches The Weakest Link is going to hate me, anyway. For about thirty seconds.
- You must bring three possible outfits. These must not include t-shirts or jeans and should be in a variety of bright colours. Women, no dresses, as these tend to be restricting. Got that?
- Voting for the person standing next to you is a Bad Idea. Between rounds you stand about a fair bit and it's pretty excruciating when, to all intents and purposes, you've just suggested that you think he/she is as thick as shit. (But she voted me off in the end, so she had her revenge.)
- There is a lot of standing around. This isn't that much fun. But hey, you get free sandwiches, and they put you up in a hotel the night before...
I am certainly not telling you when it's going to be on. Well, actually, perhaps I will nearer the time if my inner rampant egotist gets the better of me, but I doubt it: quite enough people are going to be taking the piss out of me at university, thanks very much.