Pointless

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Pointless
Also known asPointless Celebrities (celebrity version)
GenreQuiz show
Directed by
  • Nick Harris
  • Julian Smith
  • Jonathan Glazier
  • Richard Valentine
  • Richard van't Riet
  • Stuart McDonald (celebrity)
Presented by
Theme music composerMarc Sylvan
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series
  • 29 (Regular)
  • 17 (2 upc.) (Celebrity)
No. of episodes
  • 1600 (Regular; as of 30 August 2023)
  • 343 (Celebrity; as of 19 August 2023)
Production
Executive producers
  • Pam Cavannagh (BBC)
  • Tom Blakeson and David Flynn (Brighter Pictures/Remarkable Television)
Producers
  • Michelle Woods
  • Ed de Burgh
  • John Ryan
  • Laura Turner
Production locations
Editors
  • Hannah Barnes
  • Peter Elphick
  • David Horwell
  • Neil Hunter
  • Nick Parker
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time
  • 45 minutes (Regular)
  • 50 minutes (Celebrity)
Production companies
  • Brighter Pictures (2009)
  • Remarkable Entertainment (2010–present)[c]
Original release
Network
Release24 August 2009 (2009-08-24) –
present

Pointless is a British television quiz show produced by Banijay subsidiary Remarkable Entertainment for the BBC hosted by Alexander Armstrong. In each episode, four teams of two contestants attempt to find correct but obscure answers to four rounds of general knowledge questions, with the winning team eligible to compete for the show's cash jackpot.

Pointless debuted on BBC Two on 23 August 2009. The success of the first three series led the BBC to move it to BBC One from 2011. As of August 2023, the programme is airing Series 30[1] and has had peak audience figures of over 7 million viewers.[2] An offshoot of the show entitled Pointless Celebrities was first shown in 2011 and as of April 2022 had reached Series 15.[3] The format has been exported internationally.

The first 27 series were co-presented by Richard Osman, who announced on 8 April 2022 that he would step down from the role to focus more on his writing career. Beginning with Series 28, a rotating group of guests took his place. Osman continued to co-present with Armstrong on Pointless Celebrities.[4]

Development[edit]

The regular series was presented by the duo of Alexander Armstrong (left) and Richard Osman (right), from its inception until Osman left the show in 2022

The show was originally to be called Obviously and was conceived by Tom Blakeson, Simon Craig, David Flynn, Nick Mather, Richard Osman and Shaun Parry, producers at Endemol UK, in 2009. They envisaged it as a "reverse Family Fortunes....rewarding obscure knowledge, while allowing people to also give obvious answers....a quiz which could be sort of highbrow and populist simultaneously".[5] Osman was not intended to be co-presenter; originally, he filled the role only as part of a demonstration laid on for the BBC. BBC executives asked him to continue when they commissioned the first series.[5] Osman then approached comedian Alexander Armstrong to be the main presenter; the two men had been peers during their university days.[5] Armstrong, who the previous year had been lined up to present Channel 4's Countdown only to back out for fear of being pigeonholed as a presenter,[6] agreed to present what was perceived as a lower-profile show, with the presence of Osman helping to convince him.[5]

In 2016, Osman told the Belfast Telegraph, "It's never been a show that's had posters, or trailers, and it's presented by these two slightly inept guys. Everyone who's ever watched it feels like it's their programme. We've never changed it, but have always done it in the same way, which is slightly shoddy, enjoying ourselves." On the programme's future, he said, "Every programme has a shelf-life, but as long as people are enjoying it, we will stick with it. If Channel 4 wanted to offer three times as much money, we wouldn't take it. We would stay with the BBC. We love the BBC. Pointless is not for sale. We owe the BBC an enormous debt, because they've looked after us."[7]

After Series 27, Osman resigned from the regular series (remaining as co-presenter on Pointless Celebrities) and for series 28 was replaced by six presenters in rotation: Sally Lindsay, Alex Brooker, Lauren Laverne, Stephen Mangan, Konnie Huq and Ed Gamble.[8] Series 29 added Vick Hope, Gyles Brandreth, Ria Lina, Andi Oliver, Nish Kumar, Lucy Porter, Rose Matafeo and Sally Phillips to the rotation.[9]

Gameplay[edit]

Teams of two contestants attempt to provide answers that are not only correct, but also as obscure as possible. The programme initially featured five teams per episode, but the field was later reduced to four. On each episode, contestants answer a series of questions that were put to 100 members of the general public in a previously conducted online survey, which had a time limit of 100 seconds. Once a question is asked at the start of a round, the contestants are given details as to what constitutes a valid answer. If a team's answer is correct, they score one point for each participant who gave it during the survey; an answer given by none of the participants is termed "pointless" and adds nothing to the team's score. Incorrect answers add a penalty of 100 points. Once a question or pass is complete, depending on the specific format of the round, any remaining pointless answers are stated along with the high-scoring answers given in the survey, usually the top three.

The game begins with two Elimination Rounds, in which teams must achieve as low a score as possible. The rounds are scored independently of one another, and the team with the highest score in each round is eliminated from the game. If two or more teams are tied for the highest score in either of these rounds, a "lockdown" tiebreaker is played among them, using the last question from the round and the same scoring rules. If the score remains tied, an "emergency question" is asked to break it. In the "Head-to-Head", the two surviving teams compete against each other to find low-scoring answers; the first team to win two questions moves on to the Final.

Teams may return to the programme until they have either reached the Final once or been eliminated in three consecutive episodes, whichever occurs first. The team that reaches the Final is awarded a pair of trophies to keep. They must then supply three answers to a question with many correct answers (e.g. name films directed by a specified director, name a song by a specified singer). If any of the answers is pointless, they win the jackpot as it stands for that game; otherwise, the money rolls over to the next episode. Starting in Series 29, teams can win a £500 bonus in addition to the jackpot by giving three pointless answers in the Final.

The jackpot increases by £250 for every pointless answer given in any round other than the Final. If a team reaches the Final but fails to win the jackpot, the whole amount is rolled over to the next episode and increased by £1,000. As of May 2022 the highest recorded jackpot won on the show was £24,750 on 8 March 2013.[10][11] Once the jackpot is won, the amount is reset to £1,000. For the Celebrity version, the jackpot is set at £2,500 and increases by £250 for each pointless answer found, while special editions have the jackpot set at £5,000 and increased by £500 for each pointless answer found; in neither version does the jackpot roll over to another episode. Instead for Pointless Celebrities, £500 is awarded to each of the four pairings.

Prior to Series 25, teams became ineligible to return after appearing on two consecutive episodes or reaching the final once, whichever occurred first. This rule was relaxed for the programme's 1,000th episode, in which four past jackpot-winning teams were invited to compete again.

Elimination Rounds[edit]

During an Elimination Round, teams aim to score as few points as possible. Each round consists of a question derived from a subject with each member of a team required to give an answer during a pass; each round consists of two passes and teams must decide who will play which pass before the question is asked. Teammates may not confer on answers during the round. Order of play for the first pass is determined by random draw in Round 1 and by ascending order of first-round scores in Round 2. For the second pass in each round, the order of play is reversed.

After both passes are complete, the team with the highest score for the round is eliminated from the game. In the event of a tie for high score, the affected teams are allowed to confer and offer one more answer to the question as a tiebreaker. If the scores remain tied after this pass, the question is thrown out and a new one is played. All scores are reset to zero at the beginning of Round 2.

Six different formats for the questions have been used during the programme's run for the elimination rounds in each game:

  • Open-Ended – Contestants are given the question and have free choice of what answer to give. In Series 1, this format was used three times in this round, before subsequent episodes used it no more than once. A modified version of this format is sometimes used in which the contestants must name items that belong to any of several sub-categories (e.g. given a list of acronyms, choose one and state the word represented by any one of its letters).
  • Possible Answers – Introduced in Series 2, contestants are given a board of potential answers to a question and must each pick one, attempting to find the obscure ones on the board and avoid picking out a wrong answer. Each pass consists of two boards, each possessing at least one pointless answer and one incorrect answer, the latter usually having some indirect link (often humorous) with the question. This format allowed categories to be used in which no commonly agreed definitive list of correct answers might exist. It was discontinued following the end of Series 5, but revived as a bonus round midway through Series 23.
  • Clues and Answers – Introduced in Series 3, contestants are given a list of clues related to the topic of the question, whereupon they must select a clue and provide the correct answer connected to it. An example of this format is that a list could contain the names of different battles and the question requires a contestant to name the country in which it occurred (e.g., "the Battle of Hastings" – "England"). Although the round follows a similar style to that of the "Possible Answers" format, there is no guarantee that contestants may find a pointless answer from within the list. If a team answers incorrectly, that clue remains in play and can be chosen again. The number of clue/answer pairs is always three more than the number of teams playing a round, and a new board is used on each pass.
  • Linked Categories – Introduced in Series 5, each pass consists of two closely related categories; one team member provides an answer related to the first category while the other provides an answer to the second category. The format follows the same principles as that of the "Open-ended" format, but was rarely used and was later discontinued after the series.
  • Picture Board – Introduced in Series 7, contestants are shown a grid of pictures or items and must identify one at a time. In some cases, the pictures have some of the letters in their correct answers filled in and/or serve as clues to items that must be named.
  • Part Identification – Introduced in Series 24, contestants are shown seven items and four groups into which they must be sorted (e.g. given a list of seven parts of the human head, decide whether each is found in the brain, ear, eye, or mouth). Each contestant selects one item and must identify the group to which it belongs. As in "Clues and Answers," a new board is played on each pass, and an incorrect guess leaves that item available to opponents.

As of Series 25, the most common format for the elimination rounds involves "Clues and Answers" for one and either "Open-Ended" or "Picture Board" for the other. For all formats except "Open-Ended" and "Picture Board", the last contestant or team to play on a particular board is invited to answer as many remaining items as they wish before selecting one to use on that turn.

Head-to-head[edit]

The two remaining teams compete against each other, answering questions with the intention of finding the lowest scores possible. Both teams can now confer and the winning team of this round moves on to the Final. The format of this round has differed, as listed below:

  • Series 1 – The teams take turns providing one answer to a question at a time and attempting to score as few points as possible. The lower-scoring team from the elimination rounds chooses one of two categories to be played. Each team is given an equal number of turns; if at least one team has exceeded 100 at the end of a pass, the round ends and the lower-scoring team wins.
  • Series 2 to 5 – Both teams compete in a multi-question best-of contest; best-of-five for the Series 2 and best-of-three from the Series 3. Each team must give an answer to a question and once both have done so, the lower score of the two wins the question and earns that team a point. Each question will usually have a minimum of four answers to choose from and the order of play is that the team who acquired the fewest points in the elimination rounds gets to answer first on the first question.
  • As of Series 6 – Both teams compete in a multi-question best-of-three contest; while the format is the same since Series 3, all questions have five answers with each team choosing one. Questions follow one of three formats: Picture Board (occasionally using sound cues or with some letters of the correct answer filled in); Clues and Answers; or answers that have been scrambled/anagrammed or had some of their letters removed. Both teams may choose the same item if the second team to play believes that the first has answered incorrectly. The second team is invited to fill in as many missing answers as they can before choosing one.

Midway through Series 23, a new round was added to give the contestants more opportunities to increase the jackpot. It is played between the second elimination round and the head-to-head and is similar to the previously retired "Possible Answers" format. Both pairs of contestants are shown a question and six possible answers. Two of the answers are pointless, two are also correct but score some points and the other two are incorrect (often with a tangential and humorous link to the question). Each pair may offer one answer with no risk of elimination and all four contestants may confer with one another if desired. Any chosen pointless answers add £250 to the jackpot.

Final[edit]

The last remaining team receives a pair of trophies to keep regardless of what happens in the Final and now attempts to win the game's jackpot. The team chooses one category from a list, whereupon the host reads a series of questions associated with it that have multiple correct answers (e.g. characters in the play King Lear or films starring Emily Watson). The contestants have 60 seconds to discuss the questions (they do not have to spend the full amount of time though), after which they must jointly give three answers. If any individual answer is pointless, the team wins the jackpot; otherwise, the jackpot is rolled over to the next episode.

Originally, contestants could choose from one of three categories with unused ones remaining in the list for five days or until they were selected and had to provide answers to a single question within the chosen category. This format was used between Series 1 and Series 5. The number of available categories was increased to five at the start of Series 6 then reduced to four in Series 9. By the start of the second half of Series 9, the round was modified to require the contestants to provide answers to any or all of three questions connected to their chosen category. They must specify which question they are attempting with each of their three answers and can only win the jackpot if any answer is pointless for its nominated question. As of Series 29, the contestants are presented with two questions in their chosen category and can win an additional £500 by giving three pointless answers.

Pointless Celebrities[edit]

Following the success of Pointless and its transfer to BBC One, the BBC commissioned a celebrity edition of the programme, entitled Pointless Celebrities. Much like the main show, Pointless Celebrities has teams of two celebrities competing against each other to win the jackpot for their chosen charities and has the same gameplay as the regular show.

Unlike the Regular version, the jackpot does not roll over and always starts at £2,500 with every Pointless answer adding £250 to the jackpot, but this may be doubled on some occasions. £500 is always donated to every team who fails to either reach the Final or win the jackpot and any money won by a team is split equally between the two charities represented by its members.

Pointless Celebrities is broadcast within a prime-time slot on Saturday nights and features some differences in how the game works. Celebrities are allowed to return in more than one episode with the same partner or a different partner and episodes tend to have a theme in regards to the celebrity contestants that took part – for example, a celebrity edition aired in December 2015 consisted of celebrities who were made famous on reality television shows like Big Brother and Made in Chelsea.[12] Some editions of the show end with a guest performance.

Transmissions[edit]

Regular[edit]

Series Start Date End Date Episodes Notes
1 24 August 2009 6 October 2009 30 Series 1 took breaks on: 31 August and 10 September 2009.
2 8 March 2010 16 April 2010 30 Series 2 did not take any breaks.
3 30 August 2010 22 December 2010 50 Episode 50 was a celebrity special. Series 3 took breaks on: 4–14 October and 22 November–21 December 2010.
4 14 March 2011 26 August 2011 60 Series 4 took breaks on: 18 April–8 July 2011. This was also the first series to be broadcast on BBC One.
5 29 August 2011 6 February 2012 60 Series 5 took breaks on: 17 October 2011–2 January 2012.
6 13 February 2012 24 August 2012 70 Series 6 took breaks on: 23 March, 2–27 April, 3 May and 4 June–10 August 2012.
7 29 August 2012 5 December 2012 70 Series 7 took breaks on: 16 November 2012.
8 2 January 2013 2 April 2013 65 Series 8 did not take any breaks.
9 3 April 2013 25 September 2013 55 Series 9 took breaks on: 29 April–24 May and 24 June–30 August 2013.
10 26 September 2013 19 March 2014 70 Series 10 took breaks on: 7–25 October, 2 December 2013–3 January and 3–21 February 2014.
11 20 March 2014 29 September 2014 55 Series 11 took breaks on: 21 April–23 May and 19 June–5 September 2014.
12 28 October 2014 25 February 2015 55 Series 12 took breaks on: 20 November 2014 – 2 January 2015.
13 23 March 2015 28 July 2015 51 Series 13 took breaks on: 13 April–3 May, 25 May–11 June and 25 June–10 July 2015.
14 29 July 2015 29 February 2016 55 Series 14 took breaks on: 3 August–4 September, 30 September–23 October, 17 November 2015–1 January and 27 January–26 February 2016.
15 1 March 2016 20 September 2016 55 Series 15 took breaks on: 21 March–19 April and 24 May–26 August 2016.
16 24 October 2016 15 March 2017 55 Series 16 took breaks on: 21 November–9 December, 15–28 December 2016 and 24 January–23 February 2017. Episode 36 marked the 1000th episode of Pointless. For this occasion, Alexander and Richard swapped roles.
17 19 April 2017 29 September 2017 55 Series 17 took breaks on: 7 June–1 September 2017.
18 2 October 2017 12 February 2018 55 Series 18 took breaks on: 6 November 2017 – 1 January 2018.
19 2 April 2018 15 June 2018 55 Series 19 did not take any breaks.
20 19 June 2018 25 January 2019 55 Series 20 took breaks on: 20 June–31 August, 19 October–27 December 2018 and 1 January 2019.
21 28 January 2019 29 May 2019 55 Series 21 took breaks on: 13 February–29 March 2019.
22 2 September 2019 6 April 2020 55 Series 22 took breaks on: 16 October 2019–1 January and 27 January–27 March 2020.
23 7 April 2020 6 October 2020 55 Series 23 took breaks on: 20 April–25 June and 30 July–4 September 2020.
24 7 October 2020 22 February 2021 55 Series 24 took breaks on: 3 November 2020 – 1 January 2021.
25 6 April 2021 20 July 2021 55 Series 25 took breaks on: 14 June–9 July 2021.
26 21 July 2021 14 March 2022 55 Series 26 took breaks on: 26 July–3 September, 28 October 2021–3 January and 20 January–11 March 2022.
27 15 March 2022 20 July 2022 55 This is the final series with Richard Osman. Series 27 took breaks on: 18 April–20 May and 27 June–11 July 2022.
28 20 September 2022 21 February 2023 55 This series started later than originally planned due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II. This was the first series without Richard Osman and instead featured guest co-hosts, starting with Sally Lindsay (eps 1-11) Other co-hosts: Stephen Mangan (12-22), Lauren Laverne (23-33), Konnie Huq (34-44), Alex Brooker (45-55).
Series 28 took breaks on: 4 November 2022–23 January 2023.
29 3 April 2023 30 August 2023 54 Series 29 took breaks on: 8–26 May and 7 June–31 July 2023. There should have been 55 episodes, but one show with Ed Gamble wasn't aired (for unknown reasons). Co-hosts: Ed Gamble (1-10), Rose Matafeo (11-21), Ria Lina (22-32), Lucy Porter (33-43), Gyles Brandreth (44-54).
30 31 August 2023 2 April 2024 55 Co-hosts: Stephen Mangan (1-4), Konnie Huq (5-8), Ria Lina (9-12), Nish Kumar (13-23), Andi Oliver (24-34), Sally Phillips (34-45), Vick Hope (46-55).
Series 30 took breaks on: 15 September–27 October, 27 November 2023–5 January 2024 and 7 February-29 March.
31 3 April 2024 TBA 48 Co-hosts include Hugh Dennis (1-11), Anita Rani (12-22) and Gabby Logan (from episode 23 onwards).

Celebrity[edit]

Series Start Date End Date Episodes Notes
1 4 July 2011 8 July 2011 5 Daily at 5:15 pm. series 1 did not take any breaks.
2 25 February 2012 16 June 2012 8 On selected dates across four months.
3 20 October 2012 27 December 2012 9 Weekly on Saturday evenings at 5:40. Episode 9 was first broadcast on a Thursday due to Christmas schedules.
4 16 February 2013 7 September 2013 6 On selected dates.
5 14 September 2013 21 December 2013 12 On Saturdays at selected times.
6 28 December 2013 3 January 2015 31 On Saturdays at selected times. The series took a break midway through.
7 11 April 2015 26 September 2015 7 On Saturdays at selected times.
8 29 August 2015 30 January 2016 17 On Saturdays at selected times.
9 9 January 2016 3 September 2016 8 On Saturdays at selected times.
10 14 May 2016 31 March 2018 45 On Saturdays at selected times.
11 23 December 2017 1 June 2019 39 On Saturdays at selected times.
12 31 August 2019 14 March 2020 23 On Saturdays at selected times.
13 25 April 2020 24 April 2021 30 On Saturdays at selected times.
14 23 December 2020 16 April 2022 52 On Saturdays at selected times.
15 2 April 2022 5 August 2023 31 On Saturdays at selected times.
16 26 November 2022 20 April 2024 20 On Saturdays at selected times. First series recorded without the dividers between celebrities after COVID restrictions. Apart from the 26 November episode (BBC Centenary Special) and the 2022 Christmas special, all other episodes aired in 2023 and 2024.
17 11 March 2023 TBA TBA On Saturdays at selected times. The only episodes to have aired in 2023 are 'Comedy' (11 March) and "Eurovision 2023" (13 May, before the Eurovision final). The first episode of series 17 to air in 2024 is scheduled for 27 April 2024.

Pointless Celebrities: Daytime[edit]

Series Start Date End Date Episodes Notes
1 10 December 2012 21 December 2012 10 Ten episodes with celebrities shown at the time of regular Pointless (weekdays at 5:15 pm). Made for the Christmas season of 2012.

Specials[edit]

Title First Broadcast
500th Episode 6 June 2013
1,000th Episode 16 January 2017
"The Good, the Bad and the Bloopers" 23 March 2019

Broadcast and ratings[edit]

Series 1 aired on BBC Two between August and October 2009 with the corporation announcing on the day of the final episode's broadcast that it had commissioned Series 2. The series' audience had peaked at 1.69 million viewers; 17.2% of audience share for the timeslot,[13] while averaging around 1 million viewers per episode.[5] Series 2 saw audiences grow modestly; the format was tweaked prior to the start of Series 3, reducing the number of rounds and giving more time for banter between the hosts which had previously been edited out.[5] The change saw strong viewer growth and the show was moved to the BBC's main channel BBC One in 2011.[5][14] By 2013, the programme was recording four episodes in one day[15] and averaged 3.6 million viewers daily, gaining more viewers than ITV game show The Chase, which airs in roughly the same time slot.[14]

In February 2014, Pointless was extended for another 204 episodes, giving three more series, taking the total commissioned to 13 in February 2014. A further 24 Celebrity Specials were also ordered.[16] For the 1,000th episode, Alexander Armstrong and Richard Osman traded host and assistant duties and four previous couples who had distinguished themselves in various ways were invited to compete again. The jackpot for this episode began at £2,500 (the usual starting value for Pointless Celebrities) and every pointless answer during the main game added £1,000 to it. On 23 February 2016, it was announced that the show had been recommissioned by the BBC to make 165 more Regular daytime editions along with 45 prime-time Celebrity Specials taking Pointless to the end of 2017.[17][18] On 4 September 2017, it was announced that the BBC had commissioned a further 204 episodes including 165 Regular and 39 Celebrity Specials.[19]

With the start of Series 11 of Pointless Celebrities, the show's set design was changed with some new graphics and an updated intro replaced the one used since the show's debut; this extended to Series 19 of Regular Pointless.

International broadcast[edit]

In Australia, Pointless has aired on both BBC UKTV (series 10 and 11) and ABC (series 9–11).[20][21] As of 18 March 2024, it is aired on the Nine Network at 2pm Weekdays

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Result
2012 National Television Awards Comedy Panel Show Longlisted
TV Choice Awards Best Daytime Show Nominated[22]
2013 National Television Awards Most Popular Daytime Programme[citation needed] Longlisted
2014 Nominated
2015 Nominated
The Television and Radio Industries Club Awards Daytime Programme Won[23]
2016 National Television Awards Most Popular Daytime Programme Nominated[24]

Kelvin MacKenzie controversy[edit]

Following a news-themed edition of Pointless Celebrities which aired on 27 October 2014, several fans criticised the presence of former The Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie, who was responsible for the newspaper's infamous front-page report concerning the 1989 Hillsborough disaster. Osman responded to this criticism with at least twenty comments on Twitter, stating that he had not known MacKenzie would appear until "about an hour before" recording, and that he had "strongly argued against it".[25][26][27]

International versions[edit]

Legend:   Currently airing as of February 2021[28]     No longer airing  

Country Local title Channel Presenter Assistant Premiere date End date
 Australia Pointless[29] Network Ten Mark Humphries Andrew Rochford 23 July 2018 10 May 2019
 Czech Republic Míň je víc!
(Less Is More!)
ČT1 Jan Smetana 5 January 2015 17 December 2015
 Croatia Tog se nitko nije sjetio
(No one thought of that)
RTL Antonija Blaće Krešimir Sučević-Međeral 29 April 2013 7 June 2013
 Denmark Jo færre, jo bedre
(The fewer, the better)
TV2 Steen Langeberg Marie Tangaa 6 January 2019 present
 France Personne n'y avait pensé !
(No one had thought of it!)
France 3 Cyril Féraud 16 July 2011 22 January 2021
 Germany Null gewinnt[30]
(Zero wins)
Das Erste Dieter Nuhr Ralph Caspers 20 July 2012 1 March 2013
 Italy Zero e lode![31]
(Zero cum laude!)
Rai 1 Alessandro Greco Francesco Lancia 11 September 2017 1 June 2018
 North Macedonia Без Поени!
Bez Poeni![32]
(No Points!)
Sitel Snezana Velkov 1 November 2014 7 March 2015
 Netherlands Pointless[33] NPO 1 Lucille Werner Owen Schumacher 27 July 2015 28 August 2015
 Poland Tylko Ty![34][35]
(Only you)
TVP2 Tomasz Kammel Radosław Kotarski 27 February 2014 30 May 2014
 Serbia Toga se niko nije setio[36]
(No one thought of that)
Prva Tamara Grujić Dragan Ilić 5 April 2014 11 May 2014
  Switzerland Weniger ist mehr[37]
(Less is more)
SRF1 Patrick Hässig 20 August 2012 12 September 2014

An American version was set to be developed by GSN in 2017.[38] A pilot episode presented by Alison Sweeney as her assistant was Doug Mirabello was produced by Endemol Shine America and never aired.[39]

Merchandise[edit]

App games[edit]

On 26 February 2014, Endemol's in-house app-publishing division released the official Pointless app, Pointless Quiz, was released for iOS,[40] with an iPad, Android and an Amazon version released a few months later. The Pointless app features animated versions of Alexander Armstrong and Richard Osman, and allows the player to tackle questions in a similar format to the TV show.

In October 2018, Vocala released an Amazon Alexa Skill based on the show.[41]

Books[edit]

Five books have been released of the show: The 100 Most Pointless Things in the World, The 100 Most Pointless Arguments in the World, The Very Pointless Quiz Book (not to be mistaken for The Pointless Book), The A-Z of Pointless: A brain-teasing bumper book of questions and trivia and "A Pointless History of the World". All five were released by Coronet. In the books, Armstrong and Osman give their insight into pointless matters.

Board games[edit]

Three editions of the official board game have been published by University Games, as well as two mini-sized versions, each of which contains updated questions.[42]

In popular culture[edit]

Pointless appeared in the BBC sitcom Not Going Out (Series 7, Episode 5); Armstrong and Osman both played themselves.[43] Pointless was also parodied in several sketches of the satirical show Newzoids, in which a caricature of Osman interrupts people in regular situations with phrases used in the game show.[44]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Osman retired from co-presenting the main series in 2022, but he still co-presents Pointless Celebrities.
  2. ^ Regular series only, the role of co-presenter currently alternates between Sally Lindsay, Alex Brooker, Lauren Laverne, Stephen Mangan, Konnie Huq, Vick Hope, Gyles Brandreth, Ria Lina, Andi Oliver, Nish Kumar, Ed Gamble, Lucy Porter, Rose Matafeo, Sally Phillips, Hugh Dennis and Anita Rani.
  3. ^ Known as Remarkable Television prior to 2023.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "BBC One – Pointless – Episode guide". BBC. Archived from the original on 14 January 2018. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  2. ^ Daisy Wyatt (17 November 2014). "Pointless Celebrities attracts more viewers than England's Euro qualifier against Slovenia". The Independent. Archived from the original on 16 September 2017. Retrieved 8 September 2017.
  3. ^ "BBC One – Pointless Celebrities – Episode guide". BBC. Archived from the original on 8 April 2022. Retrieved 8 April 2022.
  4. ^ Richard Osman [@richardosman] (8 April 2022). "SOME NEWS! After 13 wonderful years I'm leaving daytime Pointless, to concentrate on writing. Will still be doing the celebrity shows and 'HouseOfGames'. It has been the GREATEST pleasure and I can't wait to start watching as a viewer. Thank you to everyone! ❤️" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Tom Meltzer (4 June 2013). "Pointless: Alexander Armstrong and Richard Osman on TV's favourite quiz". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 18 August 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
  6. ^ Mark Sweney (30 October 2008). "Alexander Armstrong backs out of Countdown job". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 30 October 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
  7. ^ "'We started Pointless thinking it would be a bit of fun... 1,200 shows later, we're still here'". Belfast Telegraph. 10 December 2016. Archived from the original on 26 June 2022. Retrieved 9 March 2021.
  8. ^ "Richard Osman replaced on Pointless by SIX guest stars for new episodes". 2 September 2022. Archived from the original on 2 September 2022. Retrieved 2 September 2022.
  9. ^ Mellor, Louisa (23 February 2023). "Pointless: Meet 2023's New Hosts Replacing Richard Osman". Den of Geek. Archived from the original on 10 March 2023. Retrieved 10 March 2023.
  10. ^ Russell, Sam (25 May 2020). "Less than zero: how Pointless's tweaked finale made fools of us all". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 22 September 2020. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  11. ^ "Richard Osman reveals the secrets of Pointless". Radio Times. 16 January 2017. Archived from the original on 21 October 2020. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
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