Don't Forget Your Toothbrush

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Don't Forget Your Toothbrush
Presented by Chris Evans
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 26
Production
Location(s) Teddington Studios (1994)
The London Studios (1994-5)
Running time 60mins (inc. adverts)
Production company(s) Ginger Productions
Broadcast
Original channel Channel 4
Original run 12 February 1994 (1994-02-12) – 25 February 1995 (1995-02-25)

Don't Forget Your Toothbrush is a light entertainment show originally broadcast on Saturday nights in the United Kingdom on Channel 4 from 1994 to 1995. It has also been adapted in several other countries including Australia, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Denmark, Italy, Norway, Sweden, the United States, the Netherlands, and Portugal. The format was distributed internationally by DRG.

Original UK version[edit]

Don't Forget Your Toothbrush was written and presented by Chris Evans in his first major venture away from The Big Breakfast. The first pilot was considered unsuccessful by executives and Evans himself. Michael Grade, chief executive of Channel 4, said that the pilot was "like amateur's hour".[1] Feeling pressured, Evans ordered the studio audience to laugh at his jokes, threatening to humiliate any dissenters on stage.[1] After two failed pilots, the broadcaster was reluctant to waste the money that they had spent developing the show.[2] At some point in the process, executive producer Sebastian Scott left the project and Evans invited William G. Stewart, an experienced games show producer, to develop the show.[1] The show ran for two series in 1994 and 1995 on Channel 4. Shows were transmitted live on Saturday nights the first series at 10pm, the second at 9pm. Each episode would be repeated at teatime on the following Monday (series 1) or Sunday (series 2).

The theme music was composed by David Arnold, though Jools Holland (with his Big Band in series one, and Rhythm and Blues Orchestra in series two) provided the music during the live shows. They accompanied the star performers, who included Barry White, Lulu and Tony Hadley. Evans ended each show with a song. In series one, he sang Morecambe and Wise's "Bring me sunshine!" with that week's star guest, while in series two he sang Andy Williams' "It's so easy!".

The star guest took part in the Superfan quiz to see if they knew more trivia about themselves than a huge fan, against whom they were competing. The prize was a possession of the stars that only a true fan would value. During the quiz round, usually between questions, Chris Evans would ask for the clock to be stopped, and then have a brief conversation with the celebrity guest regarding the question just asked, before starting it up again for the next one.

Toothbrush was also a game show. Each member of the audience was obliged to bring to the studio their passport, a suitcase and the following week off work (unless they were unemployed or, as was pointed out, didn't care if they got sacked). Two members of the audience were selected to take part in the "Light your lemon" quiz as a team, as well as a phone-in viewer. The contestants in the studio would be asked nine questions and if they got five right they would 'light the lemon' on a giant cocktail glass situated on stage. However, if they got five wrong they would 'flash the flake' on a giant ice cream cone and the contestant at home would be asked a single question by Jools Holland which, if they got right, would win them the exotic holiday (if they got it wrong, the game would be awarded to the studio contestants). If the studio contestants won, they went to some exotic destination (such as Mauritius) immediately after the show. If they lost, they went to a less exotic place (such as Margate) chosen for its alliteration to the first. Evans would introduce this segment by looking between alternate cameras in time to a drum beat that parodied the scene changes from one of his favourite TV shows, Captain Scarlet and the mysterons.

The hostess for the first series was Evans' then girlfriend Rachel Tatton Brown, who had previously worked at The big breakfast.[3] Despite being a former model, Tatton Brown was uncomfortable in front of the cameras and aspired to move onto something else.[4] She was replaced in the second series by his then new girlfriend, Jadene Doran, who was introduced as "Ms let your hair down!", and would appear on stage with her hair tied up, letting it drop as she arrived on stage.

One game featured during the second series involved the audience flashing their house lights on and off at a prescribed moment. A camera in a mystery location would search for someone taking part. When a house had been found, the occupants (who were never seen) would play a game in which Evans would tell them to throw 10 household items out of specific windows, for example "Throw a kettle out of the main bedroom window".

What was undoubtedly the biggest moment in the show's history came in the penultimate show of the first series, when Chris Evans kept touting a huge surprise throughout the show, but did not reveal it until he was about to play "Light Your Lemon". The audience were quite unprepared for how big a surprise it was when Evans announced that if the studio contestants won the exotic holiday, then every member of the audience would go for a week's holiday at Disneyland Paris. Obviously, the atmosphere was euphoric, and everyone was on tenterhooks in case the contestants lost the game. They won, and the whole audience left for Disneyland Paris immediately after the show.

During the second series, it was announced that there would be no third series, in order to allow the show to go out on a high. Evans soon signed up to host the Radio 1 breakfast show, and returned to Channel 4 with TFI Friday.

International versions[edit]

Country Local name Host(s) Network Dates
 Australia Don't Forget Your Toothbrush Tim Ferguson and Wendy Mooney Nine Network 1995
 Belgium (Dutch) Vergeet je Tandenborstel Niet Walters Grootaers VT4 1999
 Chile No te Olvides El Cepillo de Dientes Megavisión 1996
 Denmark Husk lige tandbørsten Casper Christensen and Anette Toftgård
Christian Fuhlendoff and Christina Bjørn
Danmarks Radio 1995-1996
2012–present
 Finland Passi ja hammasharja Tino Singh and Taru Valkeapää MTV3 1996-1998
 France N'oubliez pas votre brosse à dents Nagui France 2 1994-1996
 Germany Pack die Zahnbürste ein Ingolf Lück
Elmar Hörig
Sat.1 1994-1996
 Italy Non Dimenticate Lo Spazzolino da Denti Rosario Fiorello and Marco Balestri
Gerry Scotti and Ambra Angiolini
Canale 5
Italia 1
1995
1996-1997
 Netherlands Uhhh... Vergeet Je Tandenborstel Niet! Rolf Wouters Veronica Television
Comedy Central Family (reruns)
1995-1999
5 December 2009
 Norway Glem ikke tannbørsten Paal Tarjei Aasheim TV3 2000
 Portugal Não se Esqueça da Escova de Dentes Teresa Guilherme SIC TV 1995
 Spain No te olvides el cepillo de dientes Álex Casanovas and Paula Vázquez Antena 3 1994
 Sweden Glöm inte tandborsten Joakim Geigert TV4 15 September-17 November 1994
 United States Don't Forget Your Toothbrush Mark Curry Comedy Central 2000

Australia[edit]

The show first aired on 15 August 1995 on the Nine Network, hosted by Tim Ferguson and Wendy Mooney.[5][6]

It won the Most Popular Light Entertainment Program at the Logie Awards of 1996. Only one season was produced, reportedly due to the cost of making the show and the prizes.[7][8]

Executive producer Sandy Scott was previously involved with Bert's Family feud and C'mon, Have a Go!.

United States[edit]

One season was broadcast on Comedy Central in June 2000. The host was Mark Curry. The contestants who were selected from the studio audience could play and win prizes.

The Netherlands[edit]

In the Netherlands, Uhhh... Vergeet Je Tandenborstel Niet! was broadcast by the Veronica television station from 1995 to 1999. It was presented by Rolf Wouters. Reruns of the program continue to air on Comedy Central Family ever since 5 December 2009.

In June 2009, it was announced that the show was being revived for Dutch TV.[9]

Other versions[edit]

  • In Chile, "No te olvides El Cepillo de Dientes" (Don't Forget The Toothbrush!) was broadcast by Megavisión in 1996.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Jones, David. Freak or unique?: The Chris Evans story. HarperCollins
  2. ^ Evans, Chris (2009) It's not what you think. HarperCollins. pg 223
  3. ^ Evans, 2009, pg 234
  4. ^ Evans, 2009, pg 234-5
  5. ^ Conway, Andrew (7 August 1995). "The Guide". "Tim's travelling circus". Sydney Morning Herald. p. 3. Retrieved 5 July 2010. 
  6. ^ Fidgeon, Robert (10 January 2001). "Mooney talks". Herald Sun. 
  7. ^ "Tangawarra home > Tim Ferguson home > Don't Forget Your Toothbrush". Geocities.com. 1995-08-15. Archived from the original on 2009-10-26. Retrieved 2009-06-23. 
  8. ^ Warneke, Ross (25 April 1996). "News; Rewind". "Logie Awards just a good night out". The age. p. 4. Retrieved 5 July 2010. 
  9. ^ Hurrell, Will. "Plans to revive 'Don't Forget Your Toothbrush' in Holland | News | Broadcast". Broadcastnow.co.uk. Retrieved 2009-06-23. 

External links[edit]