Shooting Stars



Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer


Team captains: Jonathan Ross & Danny Baker (1993 Aired Pilot), Ulrika Jonsson 1995-2002, Mark Lamarr 1995-1997, Will Self 2002-2003.

Johnny Vegas was a regular panellist (on Ulrika's team) in the last series.

Scorekeeper: George Dawes (played by Matt Lucas)


BBC 2, 1993 (Aired Pilot), 1995-7 BBC Choice & BBC 2, 2002-2003


Vic and Bob are a comedy double act you either like or you don't. That previous sentence probably makes more sense than any episode of Shooting Stars ever did!

Shooting Stars is the "quiz of the business we call show" where stars can win huge amounts of cash and prizes. The celebrity captains, comedian Mark Lamarr and uber-babe Ulrika Jonnson, are all introduced by Graham Skidmore ("Our Graham" from Blind Date) usually to some made up rubbish about their private lives. When everybody has sat down, the resident grown-up baby scorekeeper George Dawes is introduced to the tune of "He's a baby! He's a baby!" Quite.

One of three things will then happen, guaranteed:

(1) Vic will start rubbing his legs at the nearest female contestant. "Vic, don't rub your legs!"

(2) Bob will produce a massive frying pan and whack Vic in the face with it.

(3) They'll get on with the show and play True or False. Actually scratch that, the first two invariably happen every two or three minutes throughout the show anyway.

"Let's see those fingers" - Vic Reeves (left) and Bob Mortimer


When they get around to the first round, each contestant is asked a True or False question of the style: "Jimmy Hill's chin is regularly used by the RNLI to save drowning passengers. Now is that true or is that false? But is it true or is it false? IS it true or false? Ulrika, true or false?" Expect this all show. After everyone has had a question, the eternal question would be asked: "What are the scores George Dawes?"

"BANG!BANG!BANG! Yes, I may be fat, but not quite as fat as your mother. Mark has two and the lovely Ulrika has three!"

Clippety Clip

Hooray indeed. Round Two would be the Clips round where we'd see clips supposedly of real films except it was Vic, Bob, Mark, Ulrika and George messing about. A clip of The A-Team would satirically show them converting a car by putting toilet roll tubes and toothpaste on in order to make their car better. Sometimes the clips were really good and sometimes they were really poor, but there would be a question afterwards. After this, "What are the scores..."


Make an impression

Ulllllllllrika-ka-ka-ka-ka! Round three was the Impression's round where Vic would sing a song "in the club style". This sounds a little bit like the song it was meant to be yet... doesn't. When somebody has got it correct then random people would be picked: "Random Factor, pick someone like a tractor."

Bird on high

Round Four would be The Dove From Above where everybody would coo so that a cardboard Dove (indeed, from above) would come down. Everybody did that then a superb running joke would happen. Vic would tell a dove related joke which would be met with about thirty seconds of silence, the sound of a funeral knell and a hit with the head with Bob's frying pan. That is unless you're Lynn Perrie, in which case, you can't control yourself and laugh unnecessarily. Once per series for one reason or another, Mark would tell the joke instead and this would be met with laughter and applause. It's great!

Anyway, on the dove would be six categories of questions. If they get a question wrong they would hear this: "ERANU" and Vic will also pull a funny face. If they pick the special category they would win a prize and be met with "OOVAVO" and another silly face. These prizes would be extremely stupid, an Eyeball rester, a cream-cake selector or a prize from a home shopping catalogue (in which case the player would pick a number from 1-500 representing the pages, but they couldn't pick anything too expensive).

At least three times in this round, reference will be made to 50's throwback Mark Lamarr's greasy hair. Subjects in this round include Men, and other irrelevant stuff such as Cakes, Curtains, Buckets whatever.

Vic and Bob on the set of one of their comedy series

Fingers on buzzers

The final round is the Quickfire round where we "really wanna see those fingers! We don't know when the time's up but when it is you'll hear this sound: [George] AAAGGGGHH!" These questions would either be about entertainment or of the type:

Q: Name a hairy dog. A: St Bernard? Q: Oh I'm sorry - it was Golden Retriever.

The winning team gets to select someone to go through to the final challenge. They've already won one pound per point but here's a chance to win lots more! These would be different most weeks, but the all-time favourites must be:

  • Vibrosprout: Ulrika Johnson would stand on a vibrating machine holding a book. On that book were ten sprouts, at the end of the twenty seconds of vibration, every sprout still on the book was worth ten pounds. There was also a King Radish, this was worth £50.
  • Judy Finnigan: Jarvis Cocker has to throw Mini Baby-Bel cheeses at a giant picture of monster Judy Finnigan (doyenne of ITV's morning schedule). Each one was worth £5 if it hit the eyes and £10 if they hit the mouth. The only trouble was that "you have to throw them in the style of a girl." Brilliant.

It made absolutely no sense but it was the show that brought Vic and Bob into the mainstream, and hooray for that.

Key moments

The Club singing round, the final Challenge, the Dove from Above (which some weeks became The Crow from Below, The Vest from the West and The Beast from the East).


"Eranu" (tonight's special prize noise)

"Uvavu" (incorrect)

"He's just a big baby!" (re: George Dawes)

"We really wanna see those fingers"

"What's the scores, George Dawes?"

Theme music


Welcome to Shooting Stars,
Welcome whoever you are,
The guest have been greeted,
The stars are now seated,
So come along and let's start Shooting Stars.


Vic and Bob had no idea what George Dawes (real name Matt Lucas) was going to say when giving the scores.

Shooting Stars won a silver rose at the 1996 Montreux festival.


Web links

BBC site

Unofficial Shooting Stars fan page


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