Wednesday 14 December 2016

McNeil & Pamphilon's Go 8 Bit gets 2 new series

2009's Sitcom Trials winners, Steve McNeil & Sam Pamphilon's TV show Go 8-Bit has been given two new series. Merry Christmas lads.

Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit is returning for two more series, Chortle can reveal.

Team captains and format creators Steve McNeil and Sam Pamphilon are also back for Dave's gaming panel show, which has extended its run for six to ten episodes per series.

Gaming journalist and comic Ellie Gibson will reprise her role as O Briain's sidekick on the show, which was one of the channel's five highest rated programmes of 2016.

Based on McNeil and Pamphilon's 2013 Edinburgh Fringe show, the first series aired in the autumn, with guest players including Russell Howard, Bob Mortimer, Jason Manford, Susan Calman and Ed Byrne.

The new episodes, due to air sometime in 2017, once again promise battles on classic games and new titles, as well as physical challenges.

O Briain said: 'What bittersweet news. The more time I spend making this fun exciting show about video games, the less time I have to play fun, exciting video games, and I'm already pretty bad at video games.

'In fact, the more I make this show the less qualified I am to be a guest on it. Now there's an irony.'

Go 8 Bit became a regular live comedy night in London and was in television development for two years.

The new episodes, which will be recorded in Elstree Studios from the end of January, are once again directed by Steve Smith, produced by Darren Sole and made by DLT Entertainment. They were ordered by Dave's director of commissioning Richard Watsham and the channel's general manager Steve North.

Iain Coyle, UKTV's senior commissioning editor and executive producer said: 'I’m so made up we’re making more of these. It’s been a real breakout hit for us and I’m so delighted it’s been embraced by the gaming community and Dave viewers alike. I guess that means my kids are gonna carry on pushing for that revolving sofa.'

Executive producer Donald Taffner Jr, added: 'Our team did a fantastic job of adapting a live Edinburgh Fringe show into the first video-game driven TV show that has been embraced by viewers of all ages and critics alike. UKTV took a chance on this format when others did not. They have been a great partner and we all look forward to producing the next two series and beyond.'

Reviews of the first series were generally positive, with Den of Geek describing Go 8 Bit as 'a decent mix of laughs and controller bashing confrontation', while the Guardian said: 'O Briain can host the heck out of a panel show, so it shouldn’t work but somehow it does.' Here is Chortle's review of the first episode.

- by Jay Richardson

Posted: 14 Dec 2016 

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Details of new shows, and our ongoing competition, are to be found here at and on Twitter and Facebook.

See the Best of The Sitcom Trials videos, here.

Monday 5 December 2016

Merry Christmas & thankyou from The Sitcom Trials

Seasons Greetings to everyone who participated in and enjoyed 2016's mammoth Sitcom Trials year, and a very big thankyou to all.

From the one-off Hull Sitcom Trials in March, through the deluge of script entries for the So You Think You Write Funny competition, via the Heats, readings, workshops, and more Heats in Glasgow, Birmingham, Cardiff, Manchester and London, to the Grand Final in Edinburgh, it's been a tremendous year, seeing 30 sitcoms showcased in 6 Heats across the country, and the highest quality of contribution and effort I can remember.

Extra special thanks have to go to the producers and team leaders across the country, without whom we'd have had no shows to begin with. So thanks to Aaron Twitchen in Birmingham, Sean Mason in Manchester, Colin McQuaid in Glasgow, Charlie Smith and Dan Mitchell in Cardiff, myself (Kev) in London (yes, you're allowed to thank yourself), all the teams of actors, writers, directors, and assistants who put every performance together, to our judges, and to the Gilded Balloon in Edinburgh for the final.

Congratulations to the finalists Baby, Rachel, Vanessa & Kate, Paul & Mat, and Sean & Ashleigh, and to Like-A-Looks for the win.

I've made no plans for The Sitcom Trials for 2017, but if anyone wants to discuss it, whether they want to put together an informal Trials event or talk about more ambitious plans, you'll get me on

A Very Happy New Year when it comes

Love from

Kev F Sutherland
Creator and Producer
The Sitcom Trials

To see all 30 sitcoms in contention across the 6 Heats of the Sitcom Trials #SYTYWF 2016, check out the videos below.

Heat 1 London Video
Heat 2 London Video
Heat 3 Birmingham Video
Heat 4 Cardiff Video
Heat 5 Manchester Video
Heat 6 Glasgow Video 
Edinburgh Fringe Grand Final video

For news of forthcoming Sitcom Trials events, and your opportunity to take part or just watch, stay tuned to the Sitcom Trials blog, Twitter and Facebook.

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