You Bet!: Wikis


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You Bet!
Format Game Show
Created by Frank Elstner
Starring Bruce Forsyth
(1988 - 1990)
Matthew Kelly
(1991 - 1995)
Darren Day
(1996 - 1997)
Country of origin  United Kingdom
No. of series 10
No. of episodes 101 (inc. 3 specials)
Producer(s) LWT
Location(s) Pinewood Studios, Iver, Heath, Buckinghamshire, England, UK
Running time 60mins (inc. adverts)
Original channel ITV
Picture format 4:3
Original run 20 February 1988 – 12 April 1997
Related shows Wetten, dass..?
Wanna Bet?

You Bet! was a British game show based around the format of the German show Wetten, dass..? developed by Frank Elstner. You Bet! ran from 20 February 1988 to 12 April 1997, initially hosted by Bruce Forsyth from 1988 to 1990, then by Matthew Kelly from 1991 to 1995 and finally by Darren Day from 1996 to 1997.



A panel of celebrities would bet on the ability of members of the public to achieve unlikely challenges and stunts, which they had usually planned and rehearsed many times, within a limited amount of time. The panellists would receive points for each outcome they predicted correctly, and the studio audience would also bet on the outcomes. The accumulated total of points achieved by the celebrities would be added to the points totalled by the studio audience, increased several times over, converted into pounds and donated to a charity chosen by the celebrity panellist who had achieved the highest score.

Changes in the Show



Each week there would be four challenges, some in the studio and some on location presented by Ellis Ward. The panellists would each "sponsor" a challenge, and Bruce Forsyth would also sponsor one. If the challenge sponsored by the panellist or Bruce Forsyth was not achieved, one of them would have to do a forfeit. (e.g., being a golf caddy or air steward for the day). It was either broadcast in the studio on the same show or broadcast on location on the following week's show. The show dropped the talk show aspects of Wetten, dass...? and concentrated on the challenges, thus reducing the running time from 2 to 3 hours to 1 hour. The original theme tune was composed by Alan Lisk, better known for penning the theme tune to Men Behaving Badly. The show's airing slot was originally on Saturday nights.

1989 - 1990

A new theme tune was introduced, composed by Jonathan Sorrell.

Spring 1991

The show made some massive changes due to the depature of Bruce Forsyth. A new logo was introduced, Matthew Kelly stepped up as host to replace Bruce Forsyth. Also, the challenges went up from four to five, which meant that Ellis Ward got involved, with her sponsoring challenges as well. Matthew Kelly also got involved in doing the work on location challenges, as well as Ellis Ward.

Autumn 1991

The show's airing slot was moved from Saturday nights to Friday nights.

1992 - 1993

The departure of Ellis Ward as co-host led to the number of celebrity guests being increased from three to four per show and Matthew Kelly doing all the work on location challenges.


The show's airing slot was moved back to Saturday nights.


The show decided there would be no more forfeits for the celebrities and Matthew Kelly when sponsoring their challenges. Instead, they introduced the celebrity challenge, where the lowest celebrity scorer would do the challenge, which would be broadcast the following week's show. The public then got to vote in at home to donate £1,000 to a charity of their choice if the celebrity succeeded or failed the challenge. The set, was replaced by a new "arena" that allowed much more floor space for the challenges. Matthew Kelly announced his intention to leave the show and concentrate on hosting Stars in Their Eyes after transmission of Series 8. The viewers' phone vote was dropped after Series 8 was shown.


Actor Darren Day took over as host, and the co-host was reinstated for all the work on the location challenges. For this penultimate series, it was Diane Youdale, better known as Jet from the UK series of Gladiators. The forfeits also returned to the show, but they were not chosen by the celebrity guests. They were automatically chosen by the crew at the end of each show for the celebrity who got the lowest score in the show.


The show introduced a new item for the celebrities, they could play their YOU BET! BONUS CARD, which meant their points would be doubled if they successfully guessed the outcome of a challenge (which can only be played once in the entire show). The celebrity challenge returned to the show, and the audience got to choose which challenge they would choose for the lowest scoring celebrity at the end of the show from two choices with cryptic clue titles (e.g., "Ooh! That's better!" or "Dangling Down"). Sarah Matravers, well known as a gong girl from Take Your Pick, replaced Diane Youdale as co-host for this final series. A new theme tune was introduced, composed by Simon Webb.

Celebrity Guests

Series 1 (1988)

Series 2 (1989)

Series 3 (1990)

Series 4 (Spring 1991)

Series 5 (Autumn 1991)

Telethon Special

?, ?, ?, ?

Series 6 (1992)

Christmas Special

Kriss Akabusi, Judi Spiers, Annabel Giles, Andrew O'Connor

Series 7a (1993)

Celebrity Special

John Regis, Bruno Brookes, Emma Forbes, Linda Lusardi

Series 7b (1994)

Series 8 (1995)

Series 9 (1996)

Series 10 (1997)



Series Start date End date Episodes
20 February 1988
26 March 1988
28 January 1989
1 April 1989
17 February 1990
21 April 1990
16 February 1991
20 April 1991
6 September 1991
15 November 1991
4 September 1992
6 November 1992
10 September 1993
15 October 1993
5 March 1994
30 April 1994
25 February 1995
29 April 1995
1 June 1996
17 August 1996
8 February 1997
12 April 1997


Date Entitle
18 July 1992
Telethon Special
26 December 1992
Christmas Special
22 October 1993
Celebrity Special

External links


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