The Bank Job (game show)
|The Bank Job|
|Presented by||George Lamb|
|Theme music composer||Marc Sylvan|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||3 (incl. Celebrity special)|
|No. of episodes||16|
|Running time||60-90mins (inc. adverts)|
|Production company(s)||Remarkable Television|
|Original network||Channel 4|
|Original release||2 January– 17 March 2012|
Four contestants answered questions to open vaults in a giant safe. Whoever earned the most money from the vaults advanced to a grand final at the end of the week, in which their earned money was placed in a jackpot that went to the eventual winner.
In round one there was 90 seconds on the clock, although the clock was stopped after each correct answer to a question. Contestants buzzed-in to answer questions but were frozen out for one question if they gave an incorrect answer. A correct answer enabled the contestant to choose one of 25 vaults in which £150,000 had been randomly distributed. At least four of these vaults contained no money. Any money found was placed in their case, and the contestant could choose whether to remain in the safe or leave. The contestants' goal was to leave the safe before the clock reached zero; however, if all four contestants had left, the one who left with least amount of money was eliminated from the game, and went home with nothing.
The three remaining contestants progressed to round two. Once again, correct answers to questions allowed the contestant to open a vault. This time, each contestant had two cases and could only place one bundle of cash in each case. The contestants' strategy was to decide whether or not to take the amount of cash discovered, or to bin it and hope for larger amounts later in the round. Once more, the contestant who left with the smallest amount was eliminated, and left with no money.
In the final round, involving the remaining two contestants, a total of £200,000 was divided between the vaults. Each contestant had an individual clock of 45 seconds. The first contestant's clock was started and continued to count down until the contestant answered a question correctly. Once a question was answered correctly, the contestant opened a vault. However, as well as cash amounts and zero amounts, there were also at least four Steals. A contestant opening a Steal automatically took the largest bundle in his or her opponent's case, so long as their opponent had at least one cash bundle in their case and had not yet left the vault. After opening a vault, a contestant could choose to leave the safe or remain in the game, and control passed to the other contestant. Play alternated between the contestants until a contestant left the safe with a greater amount than their opponent, or until time ran out for the trailing contestant. The contestant who successfully left the safe with the most money is the winner of the game, and takes all the money they have accumulated into the grand final.
The grand final featured the five previous winners who competed for the jackpot. Rounds one and two were the same as in the regular shows, whilst round three followed the round one format but kept the Steals element of the regular round three.
The final round involved the surviving two contestants, each of whom had half the accumulated money in one case and newspapers in the other case. Each contestant chose which of his cases to give to the other, in the manner of the Prisoner's dilemma, a format also seen at the end of Golden Balls and Shafted. If both contestants gave cash to the other, both received half the winnings. If both gave trash to the other, the winnings were split equally between the contestants who came third, fourth and fifth. If one gave cash and the other trash, then the contestant who gave trash to the other claimed the entire jackpot.
In the grand final of series one, the winners were Darragh, Oonagh, Michael, Katrina and Wayne. The finalists, Darragh and Michael, both tried to win all the money and both gave their opponent the trash case. As a result, they both went home with nothing, and the other three contestants—Wayne Conyers, Katrina and Oonagh—shared the jackpot of £467,500, thereby each winning £155,833.33.
In series 2, instead of a tournament format, the winner of each game received the cash earned from the final round and returned on the next episode to compete in another game.
The format also slightly changed from the first series. In addition to Steal being present in all three rounds, a vault containing the word Bankrupt was present in each round, which caused the contestant who finds it to lose his or her winnings up to that point. The time limit in round one was changed from 90 to 75 seconds. In round two, the contestants could choose to leave with only one bundle of cash, unlike in series one in which they could only leave after finding two bundles. However, once the contestant chose to keep a second bundle, the contestant was required to leave the safe. In the final round, the total amount in the vaults was £150,000 plus the accumulated total of the finalists from their previous rounds.
On the final night, five contestants—Dan, Reiss, Collette, Scott and Stacey—played for a chance to win more money. Dan, Reiss, Collette and Scott were previous winners, and Stacey was the most successful runner-up of the series. The last round boiled down to four-time winner Scott and Stacey, with £100,000 in the jackpot. Scott chose to give the cash case to Stacey, whilst Stacey chose to give the trash case to Scott, meaning that Stacey walked away with the full £100,000 jackpot.
The Celebrity Bank Job
For the last two episodes of series two (16 and 17 March 2012), eight celebrities played The Bank Job for charity. The contestants on the 16 March episode were Amy Childs, Alex James, Donal MacIntyre and Rachel Riley. On the 17 March episode, the contestants were Krishnan Guru-Murthy, Martin Kemp, Shappi Khorsandi and Olivia Lee. The winner took home whatever they found in the final round, and the runner-up earned £5,000 for their charity. Riley won the first special, taking home £36,000 for her charity, and Shappi Khorsandi won the second special, taking home £59,000 for her charity.
The second series aired eight episodes from 17 February to 10 March 2012, with a highest rating of 1.23 million viewers on 3 March. The celebrity specials aired on 16 and 17 March of that same year.
Metro's Christopher Hooton gave The Bank Job a scathing review, commenting that it was "just Deal or No Deal with added George Lamb and questions", and that despite its title, there were no elements evoking the feel of a Hollywood heist at all, "unless Ocean's Fourteen involves George Clooney answering questions about Pirates of the Caribbean in a Next cardigan whilst squealing with delight." Readers of ukgameshows.com named it the sixth best new game show of 2012 in their "Hall of fame" poll but also the worst new game show of 2012 in their "Hall of shame" poll.
- Hooton, Christopher (2 January 2012). "The Bank Job offered more tedious opening of boxes". Metro. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
- "The Bank Job - Facebook". Facebook. Retrieved 14 March 2012.
- Millar, Paul (6 January 2012). "Celebrity Big Brother 2012 premieres with 3.5m". Retrieved 6 January 2012.
- O'Brien, Liam (8 January 2012). "'Take Me Out' returns with 4.9m". Retrieved 8 January 2012.
- Millar, Paul (4 March 2012). "Let's Dance for Sport Relief still most-watched in Saturday primetime". Retrieved 4 March 2012.