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Premiere August 10, 2013
Finale January 5, 2014
Network BBC
Seasons 1
Episodes 8

That Puppet Game Show is a primetime television show that ran for one season on BBC One. It was produced by BBC In-House Entertainment in association with The Jim Henson Company.

In the series, Dougie Colon (pronounced "cologne") hosts a game show in which celebrity contestants go head-to-head in challenges set up by the show's experts. Whoever gets the most points on the show wins the jackpot of £10,000 for a charity of their choice. Backstage scenes showing producer Mancie O'Neil and others working on the show are interspersed with the onstage action.

The Jim Henson Company's involvement and the show's format drew many press comparisons to The Muppet Show. The series was also filmed in Studio D at Elstree Studios, where The Muppet Show had been taped decades earlier.[1] Brian Henson served as an executive producer (with Martin G. Baker), and was also an occasional director and performer. The show featured an original cast of characters, many being recycled from puppets used in various other Henson productions.

When the series entered development in 2012, it was tentatively titled "No Strings Attached."[2] A pilot was shot under the name "Games Inc."[1]




  • Dougie Colon - Host  (played by Dave Chapman). He has a Northern English accent similar to Vernon Kay and has a slightly similar appearance to young Bruce Forsyth. He chats to the show's contestants in between the challenges.
  • Mancie O’Neil - Producer (played by Colleen Smith). Formerly from America, she is often seen behind the scenes of the show organizing the rest of the characters and (similar to Kermit the Frog) sorting and suffering their many domestic problems.
  • Amber O’Neil - Showbiz Expert (played by Louise Gold). She appears on the game show and sets the contestants to do the “Life’s a Speech” challenge. She is also Mancie the producer’s younger sister (they are apparently twelve mouths apart from each other).
  • Eddie Watts - Music Expert  (played by Dave Chapman). On the game show, Eddie sets the musical challenges like “Sauciesong” where the contestants have to remember the correct order that the Hot Dogs sing sections of a song.
  • Miss Jemima Taptackle - Sports Expert (played by Louise Gold). Outside her work as sports teacher at a girl’s school, Miss Taptackle sets the challenge of “Punch Your Lights Out” where the contestants try punch as many of the lights on their outfits off as they can.
  • Dr. Heimlich Strabismus - Science Expert (played by Brian Henson). This eccentric scientist from Austria also appears on the game show and makes the constants do challenges like “Paddlestar Galactica” where the celebrities play ping pong to knock their opponents floating planets out of orbit and claim the points.
  • Jake Hamilton-Jones - Nature Expert (played by Victor Yerrid). Originally from Australia, he makes the celebrities do challenges like “Bird Droppings” where they have to remember different bird callings and repeat them at the right trees to collect the bird’s eggs.
  • The Amazing Ian - Mental Agility Expert (played by Brian Henson). The American Armadillo is often seen back stage lazing about and grumbling about this, that and the other. The rest of the time, he appears on the game show setting the contestants challenges that involve remembering things quickly for his questions.
  • Fenton the Tortoise - (played by Nigel Plaskitt). He is mainly a runner, going back and forth between the set and office with messages. However, being a tortoise, the messages get received very late indeed.
  • The Hot Dogs - they often appear with Eddie Watts in “Sauciesong” where the contestants have to remember and squeeze them in the correct order that they sing sections of a song. Two of them, Seamus O'Platt from Ireland and Nicky KO from America also appear as the contestants trainers in “Punch Your Lights Out” with Miss Taptackle. One of them, Steve is the show's announcer.
  • Clyde Stravinsky - Scorekeeper (played by Victor Yerrid). He is a grumpy American crab, who is often caught grumbling about his family when ever a challenge is completed on the show.
  • Udders McGhee - Studio Chairman (played by Nigel Plaskitt). He is a money hungry bull, who is always trying to work out what to remove or keep on the game show in order to keep their profit safe.
  • The Stage Hands
  • Monkey and Mouse Janitor - (played by Victor Yerrid and Brian Henson). During the show, we see them down in the basement chatting about the present situation back stage.
  • The Family - At intervals during the show, we see a family, comprising of a Dad, Mum, their son and daughter and a grandmother watching “That Puppet Game Show” in their living room at home. Similar to Statler and Waldorf, they often pass comment to each other about the show.
  • Josh McGhee - Udders McGhee's Son (played by Dave Chapman). In the last episode, Josh was brought in by his father to review the show and see if there is any room for improvement. However after being turned on and overcome by Amber O'Neil the Showbiz Expert, Josh decided to leave the show as it is. Oddly he is not a bull like his father.


  • Sauciesong - Hosted by Eddie Watts, each celebrity has to squeeze the singing Hot Dogs in the correct order so that they sing a line from a famous song correctly. If one contestant gets one wrong, the other gets his try. The first celebrity to get the hot dogs in the correct order wins the points. The basis of this game is rather similar to Marvin Suggs and the Muppaphones.
  • Punch Your Lights Out - Hosted by Jemima Taptackle, the celebrities have to punch out the most lights stuck to their bodies in the available time. The contestants who punches out the most lights before time is up wins the points.
  • Life's a Speech - Hosted by Amber O'Neill, each contestant has to read their own personal speech from an teleprompter, but some of the words have been left out. The player who fills in the most blanks correctly while they are performing their speech wins the points.
  • Nosey Neighbour - Hosted by the Amazing Ian, the celebrities have to jump up and down behind a garden fence to see if they can see what the hot dogs are getting up to on the other side. Ian will ask them a series of questions about what is going on and the nosiest neighbor wins the points.
  • Bird Droppings - Hosted by Jake Hamilton-Jones, the celebrities have to memorize a series of bird calls, repeat them by the correct tree and catch the bird's egg in their buckets. The contestant with the most eggs wins the points.
  • Paddlestar Galactica - Hosted by Dr. Strabismus, the celebrities play against each other in a cross between ping pong and inter-galactic warfare with each player trying to knock their opponents floating planets out of orbit to claim the points.
  • Cheek to Cheek - Hosted by Eddie Watts, the two contestants have to dance to a famous song which is being played at really slow speed. They then have to remember the song and write it down on their dance partner's note pad which is attached to their bottoms. The catch is that they have to write whilst still dancing to the slow song and without seeing what they are writing behind their partner's back. The points go to the player who guesses the most songs correctly.
  • Dart Attack - Hosted by Jake Hamilton-Jones, the contestants take it in turns to fire darts through a blow pipe at targets surrounding the other contestant on a spinning wheel. Whoever fires at the most targets before time is up wins the points.
  • Glow Balls - Hosted by the Amazing Ian, the contestants must memorize where the glow-in-the-dark balls are in their rings when the lights go back on. The contestant who guesses the most glowing balls correctly gets the points.
  • Blow by Blow - Hosted by Dr. Strabismus, the contestants have to see which one of them can blow out all one hundred of their candles first in order to win the points.
  • The Puppet End Game - Hosted by Dougie Colon, the celebrities face quick-fire questions from all six experts in a final push to win £10,000 for charity.


  1. Sacked
  2. Dougie's Birthday
  3. Manschool
  4. Jake's Dark Secret
  5. Flatshare
  6. Staying Alive
  7. Superstition
  8. Boss' Son

Puppet Cast

Celebrity Contestants

Dara O'Briain in "Games Inc." pilot.

  • Pilot (unaired) - Charlotte Church and Dara O'Briain
  • Episode 1 - Katherine Jenkins and Jonathan Ross
  • Episode 2 - Gary Lineker and Freddie Flintoff
  • Episode 3 - Jack Dee and Alex Jones
  • Episode 4 - Shane Richie and Claudia Winkleman
  • Episode 5 - Vernon Kay and Mel Giedroyc
  • Episode 6 - Tess Daly and Ronan Keating
  • Episode 7 - Richard Hammond and Oritse Williams
  • Episode 8 - Gabby Logan and Kevin Bridges


  • Writers: The Dawson Bros., Toby Davies, Tom Leopold, Daniel Peak, George Jeffrie (Lead) and Bert Tyler Moore (Lead)
  • Music Composer: Paul Farrer
  • Graphics: Creative Nuts
  • Computers Lumina
  • Post Production: BBC Studios and Post Production
  • Make-Up: Sarah Burrows (episodes 1, 4 and 6), Katie Annetts (episodes 2, 3, 5, 7 and 8), Liz Beckett (episode 3) and Alison Dunwell (episode 8)
  • Stylist: Rebecca Allen
  • Design Supervisor: Bob Keable
  • Stage Manager: Sarah Whiting
  • Floor Manager: Nick Keene
  • Resources Manager: Craig Dancy
  • Vision Mixer: Simon Sanders
  • Set Designer: Sarah Milton
  • Art Director: Catherine Land
  • Props Buyer: Mandy Cuttill (episodes 3 - 8)
  • Puppet Workshop: Scott Brooker (episodes 1, 2, 4, 5 and 7), Gemma De Vecchi, Maggie Haden, Janet Knechtel and Helly McGrother (episodes 1, 2, 4, 5 and 7)
  • Lighting Director: Will Charles
  • Camera Supervisors: Neil McLintock (episodes 1 and 7) and Chris Miller (episodes 2 - 6 and 8)
  • Sound Supervisor: Tony Revell
  • Script Supervisors: Michelle Arnold, Amanda Church, Elizabeth Hodges and Sandra Palormi
  • EVS Operators: Neil Belcher (episodes 1 - 5 and 8), John Loughman (episode 6) and Mark Gonzales (episode 7)
  • Production Accountant: Kevin McSweeney
  • Editors: Nick Peto, Ian Moffat and Gerry Lindfield (episode 7)
  • Dubbing Mixer: Richard Sillitto
  • Colourists: Vince Narduzzo (episodes 1, 5, 7 and 8) and Maria Chamberlain (episodes 2 - 4 and 6)
  • Production Team: Anika Bratzke, Ben Carey, Sean Noonan, Naomi Stocks and Arabella Younger
  • Researchers: Jamie Riley and Tom Wackett
  • Production Co-ordinator: Caroline Cooke
  • Assistant Producers: Chantal Barnes, Nadia Dyer-Collins and Lisa Mitchell
  • Celebrity Producer: Lauren Fleet
  • Production Executive: Stan Matthews
  • Production Manager: Sarah Mitchell
  • Commissioning Editor: Karl Warner
  • Games Producers: Ant Carr and Keith Cotton
  • Script Producer: Tom Miller
  • Executive Producers: Martin G. Baker, Derek McLean and Brian Henson
  • Series Producer: Jamie Ormerod
  • Director: Richard Valentine


External links