It's the hit BBC gameshow where contestants must come up with the most obscure answers to win money. It's so popular there's even a celeb version where the Chuckle Brothers, soap stars and various other semi-famous people battle to win cash for charity. But what goes on behind the scenes? What Pointless secrets is the show hiding?
1. Richard Osman’s laptop doesn’t work!
It is in fact, just a prop! He is fed all the info he needs through his earpiece. But he is very, very clever and comes up with a lot of his obscure facts all by himself! (So he says!)
2. Richard doesn’t wear any trousers!
Just kidding! Well, sort of! While Richard looks ever the suited and booted BBC host on top, he doesn’t bother with the suit trousers and actually wears jeans. Unlike his co-host, his legs are hidden under his desk, so you never see his bottom half.
3. Contestants can’t keep their Pointless name badge!
Nope. Instead they’re re-used. You can’t take it home as a souvenir even if your name is a rather rare spelling unlikely to be needed again. Trust me, I asked! Can’t be wasting our licence fees now, can they!
4. But finalists do get a trophy EACH
If you win, the first thing everyone asks is, ‘who got to keep the trophy?’! But, if you do make it through to the final, you don’t have to work out some sort of timeshare over the coveted glass pointless trophy – you get one each! It comes in a lovely blue box and is really rather heavy!
5. They let you sit at Richard’s desk!
You feel smarter and all-powerful just sitting there. I think it suits me! Richard, I’m coming for your job…
6. Contestants practice backstage…playing Pointless
They film several episodes a day, but you never know when you’re up next. It can mean a lot of nervous waiting around. But to keep you entertained – and to help you swat up – there are some sets of Pointless playing cards in the Green Room. It also helps you suss out the competition! But don’t worry – there’s no cheating involved – the cards are all made up of questions used in previous episodes!
7. You’ll make friends
Every one is lovely, and you’ll actually become friends with your fellow contestants as you endure the nail-biting wait backstage. They’ll all seem a lot cleverer than you, but you’ll love them and want them to win…the next game, after yours, obviously. Yay Fiona and Brian!
8. There are game show pros!
During the audition process you’ll find out about game show professionals! They go on everything. Sometimes two in one day if there’s a new programme being trialled. In fact, some game show stars are actually former quizzing pros. Egg Head Judith was the first to bag a million on Who Wants to be a Millionaire?, and Chaser Shaun Wallace once won Mastermind.
9. Richard is really is very, very tall.
At 6ft 7in, he has to duck under doorways and dwarfs co-host Alexander Armstrong – who is only just shy of 6ft himself! Good job he sits down!
10. What Not to Wear!
They’re very fashion conscious at the BBC! Contestants must bring five different outfits with them to filming – and are provided with strict guidelines, including no logos or slogans, and certain colours and patterns are banned, as they ‘strobe’ on camera. Producers will then check which ones work on screen and pick for you. It can be very disappointing when they pick an old work frock over the lovely new summer dress you’ve bought!
11. Spot the emergency denim shirt!
If a male contestant hasn’t brought a shirt that works on screen, they’re made to wear an emergency faded denim shirt! You can spot it cropping up throughout the series! We hope they wash it between wearers!
12. Mystery prize fund!
Contestants are not allowed to know what the prize fund is until they’re stood behind their podiums!
13. The Green Room rules
They’re pretty strict! Contestants who’ve been knocked out, and will be returning for the next game are under no circumstances allowed to let slip the prize fund, or what questions they got. Winners may come in and show off their trophy, but aren’t allowed to say if they’ve won.
14. All contestants must practise the ‘podium shuffle’!
And switching spots isn’t as easy as it looks! Step back, slide to the right, shuffle forwards – and don’t bump into your teammate. Or trip over the hidden wires!
15. You’ll be famous for the day!
For 24-hours after your episode airs, your mates will call you their ‘celeb friend’. And you might even get some Twitter fans! Even if you did manage to make twits of yourself in the final by answering James Nesbitt for everything…