Splash! takes a plunge in the UK

By David Knox on January 8, 2013 / Filed Under News 11

2013-01-07_1958ITV reality show Splash!, which will have a local series on Seven, has made something of a belly-flop on its first outing in the UK.

The good news was in the initial ratings as 6.35 million tuned in, the night’s highest rating entertainment show. But it may be short-lived if Twitter and UK press are anything to go by.

It was aptly savaged according to The Mirror and The Sun, which have headlined stories as “Tom Daley’s Belly Flop” and “Water Bomb! Not Even Jade Ewan’s Sexy Gold Bikini Can Save Tom Daley’s New Diving Show Splash!” respectively.

The show features Olympic diver Tom Daley train 15 celebrities to dive in front of judges – diving coach Andy Banks, Olympic silver medal winning diver Leon Taylor and, rather bizarrely, comedienne Jo Brand.

Celebrities includ Eurovision entrant Jade Ewan, comedian Omid Djalili, Benidorm’s Jake Canuso, Absolutely Fabulous actress Helen Lederer, and presenter Jenni Falconer. Others appearing in week two include reality star Joey Essex and former ski jumper Eddie ‘The Eagle’ Edwards.

But on Twitter reaction was harsh:

“What’s going on? Is the joke on me? Am I being filmed on my sofa? #splash. Did they ever explain why Jo Brand is a judge?”

“This could be the worst/most embarrassing thing I’ve ever seen on my television.”

“TV really hit rock bottom with Splash last night #purerubbish.”

“What’s this prog on ITV Splash wow terrible”

“#splash literally the worst tv show I’ve ever seen but I guarantee everyone is watching it for its terrible set up and idea”

“Splash is terrible, but the worst thing about it is that Harry Hill’s TV Burp isn”t around to take it apart next Saturday.”

ITV was even panned for its camerawork, but that’s unlikely to be a criticism of Seven’s upcoming Celebrity Splash given it has plenty of experience in the live variety field.

A bigger question will be whether viewers come back after the initial car-crash value of stars belly-flopping into the water.

11 Comments »

  1. Brekkie January 9, 2013 at 9:01 am -

    pm1989 – it was quite funny that the standard voting recap for such shows was in fact the entire action from the show in 60 seconds.

    The Games on C4 used to manage two dives from five celebs plus a separate swimming event in one-hour.

  2. mc January 8, 2013 at 11:42 pm -

    @Brekkie, the Seven Network was almost literally ITV Australia for a while around the turn of the millenium, with the “Red Heart” joint venture producing most of Seven’s Australian drama.

  3. mariusj January 8, 2013 at 11:29 pm -

    i lasted for 10 minutes. it is truly dire. ITV “splashed out” on this one i m afraid and seven will do the same

  4. SquareEyes00 January 8, 2013 at 9:49 pm -

    I think you will see the exact same thing happening in Australia, that happened in Holland & Germany before and will also happen in the UK.

    The show, ratings and reception are completely 1 on 1 with the Dutch version. A lot of negativity before the premiere, a sloppy, not well rehearsed first show, but decent ratings and winning the evening.

    Show 2 got much better in NL, and the final show was the best scoring program for SBS6 of last year, beating Strictly Come Dancing and Beat The Best.

    People are just willing to see the potential bellyflops; it is like sudden death in extra time with a sport event, or the last number of the lottery, or the fifth set in tennis. It has the same kind of tension.

    It’s a guilty pleasure, the more people complain, the more will watch. A part of the audience doesn’t return, a new part of the audience has to see what everyone was talking about and most of the people just keep on watching.

  5. TasTVcameraman January 8, 2013 at 9:13 pm -

    Methinks it should go onto 7Mate straight up, if the local show will be the same but I suspect that 7 will have crazy camera angles to add spice to the show, in my opinion it just makes me turn off, my TV sits straight on the floor so why should they have crazy angles. Anyway 7 should take a look at the BBC and the lot who do “eurovision” true class and not a crazy angle in sight.

  6. jonasboi January 8, 2013 at 1:50 pm -

    on my blog most people were only going to watch to see the handsome Tom Daley.

  7. gavin January 8, 2013 at 12:09 pm -

    Nice satire on the whole thing here: thedailymash.co.uk/news/arts-entertainment/splash-drowns-12-2013010755097

  8. Brekkie January 8, 2013 at 9:58 am -

    “ITV was even panned for its camerawork, but that’s unlikely to be a criticism of Seven’s upcoming Celebrity Splash given it has plenty of experience in the live variety field.” – strange comment considering ITV’s 50+ years in light entertainment – Seven is pretty much seen as the Aussie ITV by us Brits. Any camera problems more likely down to the presense of a pool and the lack of experience of the team in covering diving – something I suspect will also be a problem for Seven.

    Anyhow, people expected it to be rubbish – it was, but as people were proven right they were willing to stick with it. And unlike ITV who show it live I suspect like many other shows Seven will pre-record it earlier in the week then play it out as live, so have the benefit of post production.

  9. HardcorePrawn January 8, 2013 at 9:42 am -

    I don’t think Australia can stake any claim on Jade Ewen, she was born and bred in London, but did appear in an Australian TV show (Out There) about 10 years ago.

  10. pm1989 January 8, 2013 at 9:08 am -

    While it is never going to be critically acclaimed… Seven can learn some good lessons.

    The most important is to have more then 5 dices in 90 minutes. When I read that I though ITV had lost the plot. Only 5 dives is ridiculous. Should be able to get all 15 done easily!!!

  11. Jason Jones January 8, 2013 at 7:59 am -

    I watch the episode… It Bombed!!!. I think Channel Seven has got a awful show. It reminds be of a Celebrity Man O’ Man however jumping off the 10m platform.

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