Australian Countdown!

All discussion relevant to Countdown that is not too spoilerific. New members: come here first to introduce yourself. We don't bite, or at least rarely.
Aaron
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Australian Countdown!

Post by Aaron » Sat Apr 03, 2010 5:48 pm

I've only posted on here a few times, but I'm surprised nobody has found this yet...

SBS is launching our favorite letters and numbers game in Australia!

They're looking for contestants right now -http://www.sbs.com.au/article/117212/Co ... -quiz-show

As far as I can tell from looking at other articles about this show, it will premiere in June. Let the countdown (ahem) begin!

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by James Robinson » Sat Apr 03, 2010 6:01 pm

Kids will probably miffed when they find out that you have to be 16 years old to apply.
CO:WY 2020 CANCELLED :cry: :cry: :cry:

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Kirk Bevins
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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Kirk Bevins » Sat Apr 03, 2010 6:38 pm

Do they pay travel expenses from England? What's the prize? If it's big bucks then it's almost worth paying for a flight out there.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by David Roe » Sat Apr 03, 2010 10:20 pm

Hard luck, Kirk. Rumour has it they're in close contact with Mr. Eadie to ensure that no-one gets on a second time. (Or in some cases, third. ;) )

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Aaron » Sun Apr 04, 2010 2:34 am

Alas, SBS is a government-run channel, and I think that means no cash prizes.

On a related note, if you can come up with a viable way to make Countdown a big-money game, I'd love to know it. That's probably the only way it will ever get on TV in America!

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Kirk Bevins » Sun Apr 04, 2010 11:32 am

Aaron wrote:

On a related note, if you can come up with a viable way to make Countdown a big-money game, I'd love to know it. That's probably the only way it will ever get on TV in America!
Ask Barry Hearn. Darts took off in the 80s and 90s and now they play for massive money. There should be tournaments around the country week in week out like on the PDC circuit...£100 entry fee and if you win 2 games, you've already won £200. £6000 for the winner on the day. That would be ace.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Kai Laddiman » Sun Apr 04, 2010 11:35 am

James Robinson wrote:Kids will probably miffed when they find out that you have to be 16 years old to apply.
:cry:
16/10/2007 - Episode 4460
Dinos Sfyris 76 - 78 Dorian Lidell
Proof that even idiots can get well and truly mainwheeled.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Jeff Clayton » Sun Apr 04, 2010 7:30 pm

James Robinson wrote:
Kids will probably miffed when they find out that you have to be 16 years old to apply.

:cry:

No way!! As if Kai??!

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Aaron » Wed Apr 07, 2010 3:23 am

In response to what Kirk Bevins said...Thank you Kirk, but I didn't mean a big money tournament game...I meant a big money TV game show. I can't speak for every country, but in America right now, it seems that every new game show has to follow the Who Wants To Be A Millionaire\Deal Or No Deal huge jackpot model.

This may simply be urban legend, but it's rumored that Have I Got News For You offered big bucks in its US pilot.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Aaron » Mon Jul 12, 2010 2:29 pm

Well, I was only off by two months. "Letters And Numbers" will premiere on Monday, August 2 on Australia's SBS1.

The host is Richard Morecroft (an Australian newscaster, as far as I can tell), Lily Serna is filling the Rachel role, and Dictionary Corner is David Astle.

Assuming I can track down an episode, I'll post my impressions here.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Marc Meakin » Mon Jul 12, 2010 5:13 pm

Aaron wrote:Well, I was only off by two months. "Letters And Numbers" will premiere on Monday, August 2 on Australia's SBS1.

The host is Richard Morecroft (an Australian newscaster, as far as I can tell), Lily Serna is filling the Rachel role, and Dictionary Corner is David Astle.

Assuming I can track down an episode, I'll post my impressions here.
I bet Kirk is saving up his airfare. :)
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Marc Meakin » Mon Jul 12, 2010 5:14 pm

Maybe in the future we could have a countdown version of 'The Ashes'
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Jeff Clayton » Thu Jul 15, 2010 8:08 pm

^^ (Y)

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Lucy Gowers » Mon Aug 02, 2010 5:39 pm

I've just watched the first episode:

http://www.sbs.com.au/shows/lettersandn ... ch-Online/

The Australian ran a preview piece which churned out the usual Countdown cliches (sample: "..this new local version is no living coma of a TV show, seemingly aimed at the clinically unwell, long-term unemployed or ancient folk with afternoons to fill, like the British version"). Drongos.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/ar ... 5897516911

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Michael Wallace » Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:19 pm

Lucy Gowers wrote:I've just watched the first episode:

http://www.sbs.com.au/shows/lettersandn ... ch-Online/
Thanks very much for posting this, have just watched it, and it was...pretty bad. It's remarkable how much they've copied the UK Countdown set though, right down to the numbers/letters board that spins around (unless we in turn stole that from the French, or something).

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Eoin Monaghan » Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:36 pm

Thanks Lucy.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Karen Pearson » Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:48 pm

I love the way the board bangs when Lily writes on it!

It is pretty bad considering how it was hyped up in the article Lucy posted the link to.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Eoin Monaghan » Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:56 pm

SPOILERS.

BEAUTS was there as an equaller. Quick off the mark! Took about 6 seconds, he should meet Kirk.


Quite enjoyable, very short though and the clock music wasn't loud enough really, still an alright show.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Gavin Chipper » Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:15 pm

FAIRDINKUM as a beater in round 3.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Chris Philpot » Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:23 pm

Have Elaine and Mel Giedroyc ever been seen in the same room at the same time?

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by JackHurst » Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:35 pm

I thought that it was pretty good considering that it was the first ever show. It did appear quite different to the our countdown, as it seemed like they were openly using solvers for the rounds, and it looked as though the contestants were either actors or had had quite a bit of screen training before they went on the show. It also ran a bit too smoothly, which suggests they might have done many takes, or that the episode was generally more heavily scripted than our version, which is recorded almost continuously in one take if possible.

It was clear from round one that the dicionaries used were different, as TOILINGS was allowed, when its not valid in OED, and then in the next round, MATIER was disallowed, when its actually good in OED.

I also quite liked the bloke in dictionary corner, he must have had a bit of telly experience already also.

One thing that pissed me off a bit was the speed at which the conundrum was revealed. I don't think they realise that it needs to be revealed almost instantly as opposed to over a 1 second gap, in which those with better eyesight will get a major advantage.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Aaron » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:12 pm

My thoughts:

Gameplay: Letters, Letters, Numbers, Break (complete with Teaser), Letters, Letters, Numbers, Break, Letters, Numbers, Conundrum. Feels a little short, but the order of the rounds is the least of my worries.

Hosts: Richard Morecroft annoyed me a little, but that could just be because he's explaining all the rules I already know. David Astle's attempt at the origin of words segment feels very thrown in.

Set: A carbon copy of the British version...what more is there to say?

Music: No where near that of Countdown. The clock music sounds...tinny.

All in all, I like it and I hope the Australians do. Look at it this way - it beats what I'd likely get in America.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Chris Corby » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:22 pm

I loved the way contestant Elaine chose four large numbers and two small suggesting she was good at the numbers game. The total was 750 and she had a 7, 100 and a 50 but declared nothing saying "I lost it..." :D :D :D

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Kirk Bevins » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:27 am

Chris Corby wrote:I loved the way contestant Elaine chose four large numbers and two small suggesting she was good at the numbers game. The total was 750 and she had a 7, 100 and a 50 but declared nothing saying "I lost it..." :D :D :D
Yeah, this was incredible. If the producers of the show are watching, then I'd quite happily make a guest appearance in the audience one day (or even as a contestant) - as long as they pay my flights :)

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Chris Corby » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:28 am

Kirk Bevins wrote: If the producers of the show are watching, then I'd quite happily make a guest appearance in the audience one day (or even as a contestant) - as long as they pay my flights :)
Brave to risk your reputation. Different dictionary. You may not be that impressive down under..

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by John Gillies » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:26 am

Lucy Gowers wrote: The Australian ran a preview piece which churned out the usual Countdown cliches (sample: "..this new local version is no living coma of a TV show, seemingly aimed at the clinically unwell, long-term unemployed or ancient folk with afternoons to fill, like the British version"). Drongos.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/ar ... 5897516911
Also from this article,

"The British quiz was originally hosted by the avuncular Richard Whiteley, perhaps a little too fond of mildly lascivious jokes"

How dare they!!

"He's pulled off a remarkable transformation with Letters and Numbers. Apart from a much cooler bunch of presenters, the local show is faster and much smarter-looking than the British version."

Bollocks

Having watched the first episode, it was fairly pedestrian; there was no banter or rapport between the presenters. Hopefully it will improve over time, as I really would like it to succeed.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Andrew Feist » Wed Aug 04, 2010 5:56 pm

Chris Corby wrote:I loved the way contestant Elaine chose four large numbers and two small suggesting she was good at the numbers game. The total was 750 and she had a 7, 100 and a 50 but declared nothing saying "I lost it..." :D :D :D
I wonder, from the first couple episodes, whether the producers are saying "you know, two large is the easiest numbers game...."

I also think it's great that the last light on the clock lights up at about :28, well ahead of the hand getting there (but not consistently -- are the lights not hooked up to the clock?).

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Michael Wallace » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:06 pm

Andrew Feist wrote:I wonder, from the first couple episodes, whether the producers are saying "you know, two large is the easiest numbers game...."
I've noticed (both on apterous and on the show fairly recently) that 2 large seems to be a weirdly popular pick. One theory I've heard is that it's perceived as easier because it's slightly more of a mix (people know that 4 large is hard and 6 small is hard, so 2 large is halfway between?). Charlie hopefully has some stats on this when he's not too busy with this 'job' phase.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Ryan Taylor » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:28 pm

Michael Wallace wrote:
Andrew Feist wrote:I wonder, from the first couple episodes, whether the producers are saying "you know, two large is the easiest numbers game...."
I've noticed (both on apterous and on the show fairly recently) that 2 large seems to be a weirdly popular pick. One theory I've heard is that it's perceived as easier because it's slightly more of a mix (people know that 4 large is hard and 6 small is hard, so 2 large is halfway between?). Charlie hopefully has some stats on this when he's not too busy with this 'job' phase.
2 large numbers games are solvable more of the time than any other but not neccessarily easier because of the many ways to go about it.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Michael Wallace » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:33 pm

Ryan Taylor wrote:
Michael Wallace wrote:
Andrew Feist wrote:I wonder, from the first couple episodes, whether the producers are saying "you know, two large is the easiest numbers game...."
I've noticed (both on apterous and on the show fairly recently) that 2 large seems to be a weirdly popular pick. One theory I've heard is that it's perceived as easier because it's slightly more of a mix (people know that 4 large is hard and 6 small is hard, so 2 large is halfway between?). Charlie hopefully has some stats on this when he's not too busy with this 'job' phase.
2 large numbers games are solvable more of the time than any other but not neccessarily easier because of the many ways to go about it.
Thanks for that, captain obvious. :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Gavin Chipper » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:43 pm

Michael Wallace wrote:
Andrew Feist wrote:I wonder, from the first couple episodes, whether the producers are saying "you know, two large is the easiest numbers game...."
I've noticed (both on apterous and on the show fairly recently) that 2 large seems to be a weirdly popular pick. One theory I've heard is that it's perceived as easier because it's slightly more of a mix (people know that 4 large is hard and 6 small is hard, so 2 large is halfway between?). Charlie hopefully has some stats on this when he's not too busy with this 'job' phase.
It's weird because years ago, I seem to remember no-one ever going for two large and I kept wanting them to, so I could see what it was like.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Ryan Taylor » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:25 pm

Michael Wallace wrote:
Ryan Taylor wrote:
Michael Wallace wrote: I've noticed (both on apterous and on the show fairly recently) that 2 large seems to be a weirdly popular pick. One theory I've heard is that it's perceived as easier because it's slightly more of a mix (people know that 4 large is hard and 6 small is hard, so 2 large is halfway between?). Charlie hopefully has some stats on this when he's not too busy with this 'job' phase.
2 large numbers games are solvable more of the time than any other but not neccessarily easier because of the many ways to go about it.
Thanks for that, captain obvious. :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:
Since this was obvious, what was the point of your first response? 2 large shouldn't be "weirdly" popular.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Michael Wallace » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:46 pm

Ryan Taylor wrote:Since this was obvious, what was the point of your first response? 2 large shouldn't be "weirdly" popular.
It's only obvious to the freaks like me who populate c4c, I used lots of emoticons to indicate I wasn't being entirely serious ;) :) :D :lol: ;) :roll: :geek: :ugeek:

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Ryan Taylor » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:48 pm

Michael Wallace wrote:
Ryan Taylor wrote:Since this was obvious, what was the point of your first response? 2 large shouldn't be "weirdly" popular.
It's only obvious to the freaks like me who populate c4c, I used lots of emoticons to indicate I wasn't being entirely serious ;) :) :D :lol: ;) :roll: :geek: :ugeek:
But now it looks like you're filling in for James while he is holidaying.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Charlie Reams » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:57 pm

I think the relevant stat is "cluelessness vs probability of picking 2 large", which is quite hard to generate.

Jason Larsen always picks 4 large.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Matt Morrison » Wed Aug 04, 2010 10:04 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:It's weird because years ago, I seem to remember no-one ever going for two large and I kept wanting them to, so I could see what it was like.
I remember when I wanted to know "what it was like". So I joined apterous.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Charlie Reams » Thu Aug 05, 2010 12:24 am

Matt Morrison wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:It's weird because years ago, I seem to remember no-one ever going for two large and I kept wanting them to, so I could see what it was like.
I remember when I wanted to know "what it was like". So I joined apterous.
This is such a nicely layered joke that I have Liked it, so you win this Like battle, but I will win the war.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Michael Wallace » Thu Aug 05, 2010 12:27 am

It is twenty to 2 in the morning and I have the fucking Australian Countdown theme tune stuck in my head.

I hate you all.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Ben Hunter » Thu Aug 05, 2010 12:44 am

Hi I'll start with a consonant thanks.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Craig Beevers » Fri Aug 20, 2010 11:48 am

As mentioned on uk-scrabble this episode has Andrew Fisher on it, he's a top notch Scrabbler who moved to Australia ages ago and was previously on Series 8 of Countdown here.

http://www.sbs.com.au/shows/lettersandn ... andnumbers

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Matt Morrison » Fri Aug 20, 2010 12:28 pm

My first time watching. Thoughts:
  • There's nothing wrong with more electronicated scoreboards.
  • I like the funky ass clock, and although the clock music feels very un-Countdown it actually works nicely, I imagine it's easier to do rounds with that music in the background than it is with Countdown clock music, although it does lack a more powerful crescendo to indicate that the end time is approaching.
  • Lily looks like that slightly backwards girl from various films about suburban dystopia, the sort you'd definitely like to have a go on but not have kids with. You know what I mean, like a slightly-more-incesty-looking Mena Suvari. I like her small neat writing though, even if the way she puts maths on paper just makes simple sums look totally confusing.
  • Rob is a well nice guy. In general they're all very polite on the show, it's quality.
  • The bloke in dictionary corner also seemed pretty cool, the host dude felt a bit too Americanized though.
  • Scrabble players are pretty shit at numbers.
  • The theme music wasn't as memorable as MW suggested, I'd completely forgotten it thirty seconds after it finished. It started so well, like some kind of murder mystery theme (not that that is necessarily appropriate to letters and numbers games, but I still loved it) and then when the rest of the percussion kicked in it sounded cheap.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Charlie Reams » Fri Aug 20, 2010 3:35 pm

Incidentally they contacted me about licensing apterous for an Australian Countdown version, but after I said "sure", they never got back to me.

Good story huh?

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Michael Wallace » Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:50 pm

Charlie Reams wrote:Incidentally they contacted me about licensing apterous for an Australian Countdown version, but after I said "sure", they never got back to me.

Good story huh?
Wrong thread.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Matt Morrison » Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:57 pm

Michael Wallace wrote:
Charlie Reams wrote:Incidentally they contacted me about licensing apterous for an Australian Countdown version, but after I said "sure", they never got back to me.

Good story huh?
Wrong thread.
Haha. Thought that was going to be a link to Questions You've Never Wanted Answered.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Eoin Monaghan » Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:22 pm

Andrew is now a member.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Andrew Fisher » Mon Aug 23, 2010 7:28 am

Oh, so I am. Hello.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Andrew Fisher » Mon Aug 23, 2010 7:32 am

I can also confirm that I am crap at the numbers, but adequate on the words, except where the odd Scrabble combination rears its head (e.g. HIDEOUTS was deemed invalid in one show). The presenters are still pretty new at this stage (about three days into the filming), but definitely settled into their roles by the end of the series, which is already in the can. Anyway, must go as I need to switch on the TV to watch myself in half an hour.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by David O'Donnell » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:12 am

Anyone else think that Australian Countdown's David Astle

Image

looks like US comedian Andy Dick?

Image

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Lucy Gowers » Fri Jun 22, 2012 8:13 pm

I hear Aussie Countdown is no more after only two years. SBS are replacing it with Pommie Countdown apparently. Wonder how it will be received down there.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Josh Hurst » Thu Jun 28, 2012 10:03 am

Hmm, this could explain why they continually ignored my contestant applications...

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Jason Larsen » Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:13 am

I heard that the first series of Countdown they are showing is Jeff Stelling's first series, Series 60. I hope that makes most of you happy. I wonder if most Australians like UK Countdown.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Ciaran Thompson » Tue Jul 31, 2012 3:39 pm

They will hopefully see how much better our version of Countdown is. Funny how the Austrailan Version has the same amount of numbers rounds as us (three), yet only nine rounds in total, unlike our 15 rounds. That's the one thing I prefer about the Australian version (and all foreign versions) of Countdown - a greater mathematical content.

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Jason Larsen » Tue Jul 31, 2012 4:18 pm

The Aussies are protesting UK Countdown because Letters and Numbers is homegrown

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Grant Waters » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:35 pm

They missed a trick with the name.

Should be ....

Countdownunder!

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Ben Wilson » Sat Jul 20, 2013 10:47 pm

Even though the Australian version's been cancelled, I was surprised to see this- www.ebay.co.uk/itm/390616701412 - on sale, and hugely disappointed a similar thing hasn't been done for the 30th birthday championship. :-(

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Jason Larsen » Sun Jul 21, 2013 4:07 pm

I remember there was an outpouring of disappointment when their version got canceled. I noticed it on their Facebook page. They thought their version was unlike any other. I was not as surprised to see that. Letters and Numbers had a cult following.

Now, the Aussies have Jeff Stelling to watch!

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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Dave Preece » Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:02 am

Ben Wilson wrote:Even though the Australian version's been cancelled, I was surprised to see this- http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/390616701412 - on sale, and hugely disappointed a similar thing hasn't been done for the 30th birthday championship. :-(
Probably this sort of non-promotion is the reason Countdown is beginning to not only have very low playing standards, but is unfortunately dwindling in the viewing stakes too.

:-(

Tom S
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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Tom S » Thu Aug 12, 2021 10:53 pm

Reviving a very old thread, but Letters and Numbers is set to make a return. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/a ... axing.html
I had a few of the old ep's pop up in my YT recommendations and would say that it's definitely watchable. It does feel a bit conservative, but friendly nonetheless- though you wouldn't catch Susie Dent telling a player to learn their 75x tables or to pay full attention to their monitor, which I saw occur in a particular ep.

Intrigued to see its success. If I don't end up getting on to Countdown anytime soon, then perhaps I'll conveniently book a holiday to Oz for a few months and send an application in there ;)

Philip A
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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Philip A » Wed Sep 22, 2021 11:22 am

The new series of Letters and Numbers will have celebrity contestants only.

Tom S
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Re: Australian Countdown!

Post by Tom S » Wed Oct 06, 2021 6:26 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiLcL8yKGmY Watched the new version on YT- not bad, but a bit like a sedate Catsdown...

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