Alphabetical is a new quiz show on ITV, being hosted by popular sports presenter Jeff Sterling. This show features three challengers and a returning champion, who take part in several different games revolving around the alphabet. Some of these game include a series of questions where all answers begin with the same letter, questions where they are given a category and set of initials and one where 13 letters are selected at random and the contestants have to answer related questions. The aim of the show is for presenters to try to accrue as much time as possible before the tense final @Alphabetical round, with two
of the challengers falling by the wayside.
In the final round, the contestants must work through the entire alphabet, going through a question for each letter. They have to do so before 100 seconds, plus whatever time they accrued. If neither of them makes it to the end, the jackpot remains unclaimed. This show is based on the format of popular ITV show, The Alphabet Game.
Sterling mentioned that he was extremely happy to be in the quiz show world once again, having previously hosted Countdown. “It’s one for the wordsmiths out there with no shortage of quick-fire questions. It’s high-tempo, exhilarating and I can’t wait for the viewers to see it.” With 200 questions asked per show, Managing Director of Gameface productions Adam Adler adds that this is a great fit for the trivia buffs out there and that Sterling is the perfect fit for the type of show they are looking to put together.
#Alphabetical has some big shoes to fill, being tapped as one of two summer replacements for popular show The Chase alongside Cash Trapped. Since the show has just come out, ratings data and critical reception have not come out yet, but viewers have provided reactions, and overall, they are not pleased. At the moment, #Alphabetical has a 2.5/10 rating on TV Listings. The majority of the negativity surrounds the perception of the show as dull and plodding, as opposed to the tense, high-stakes show that was promised. Sterling’s reading of the questions seems to take too long for many viewers, especially for the speed-fueled Jackpot round.
Regardless of this poor start, it’s not unheard of for game shows to go through bits of retooling based off of feedback. In addition, the combination of Jeff Sterling and the fact that ITV needs some sort of show to recreate The Chase’s success though means that it may be worth keeping around to try and improve. However, on its own merits, things are not looking good for the show and its chances at future seasons.
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