Come Fly with Me


Tania Strecker and Joe Mace (alternate episodes)


BBC Choice, 2 October 2000 to 24 February 2002 (20 episodes in 2 series)


Frankly, we're getting more pleasantly surprised by the Beeb by the minute. With The Weakest Link they've got a ratings hit which aims to give away £10,000 a day. Then came a show on BBC Choice which gave a holiday of a lifetime away to one lucky couple, daily. On BBC Choice, the channel that could hardly get picked up very well.

And by looking at it, you'd think that it was a modern cheapo version of Passport crossed with Ultra Quiz with random excerpts of modern contemporary music liberally sprinkled on top. The reason that you'd think that is because that's kind of what it was.

Five couples were flown somewhere nice in the world (Where d'ya want to go? NEW YORK! Where don't you want to go? Newquay, etc.) and they competed in various challenges. There were four in total and if you came last in any of the challenges then you got the next plane home so in the space of 24 hours four of the five couples would not only have flown to the place in question but would have flown back home too. Cruel indeed, given that trips to America are about 7 hours long and you'd be eliminated as soon as you get there.

Round One was The Plane Game where each of our five couples used the plane trip to read up on the travel guides they'd been given on the place of destiny. Then they got a written questionnaire. The couple who performed the worst got to stay on the plane because once it landed it went straight back home.

The next three challenges all seemed as if they were concocted about five minutes before they decided to film it.

Round 2 in New York, which is the place and episode we're basing this synopsis on, had the remaining four couples shooting one at a time from the free throw line of a basketball court with the first three to get shots in going on and the fourth couple going home.

Round 3 got the three remaining couples to get residents of New York to feed them hot dogs which would also have to be photographed. The team who ate the least hot dogs, with the photos to prove it were sent home.

The losers cabs back to the airport rather hilariously had hidden cameras in them so we found out what they really thought of the experience, the other contestants and so on. Sneaky but fun.

The final round then and our couples tried and found the correct key that opened the Penthouse suite they would be staying in. What followed was a bit like the Locked in the Limo game from Whatever You Want but instead of answering questions on their favourite stars, one of the couple filled in a questionnaire and the questions were multiple choice based on their responses. Whoever did best in Round 3 went first. Get a question right, pick a key, if it fits you won if it didn't your opponent tried. Keep going until someone won a holiday for two.

Shockingly, for a travel game show there were surprisingly little actual travelly bits in it apart from random facts about the city read out by the locals between rounds. The music played over the top was of varying relevance. It was very difficult to feel tension when faced with eating hot dogs. That about sums up the show really.


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