Hamma + Glamma Productions for ITV Play, 6 October to 17 December 2006
ITV Play aimed to give new meaning to participation television when they launched the UK's first interactive dating TV show (haven't they heard of Dial-a-Date?). Playdate involved 2-3 hours of speed-dating where various singletons of the male and female human variety (or datees as they were referred to) took calls and texts from the five viewers that actually bothered to do so, let alone tune in.
But there was one complete drawback. The datees were not members of the public. It turned out that the datees were selected from various casting and extras agencies. Many of them were part time models and had media connections and would appear on the programme so many times. The biggest give away to this involved the appearance of Leanne Dance, who previously appeared on ITV Play as an in-vision production runner in The School Run, a short-lived phone-in quiz show.
ITV backed down Playdate after just two months on air. Meanwhile, in millions of homes across the country, life went on.
Hamma + Glamma Productions went to achieve great success with that long-running series, The Debbie King Show. They now produce a nice little array of feature programmes for ITV3.