Review: Catchphrase Christmas Celebrity Special
Katie Price, Christopher Biggins and Warwick Davis battle it out for charity.
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Everyone wants to be that know-it-all who guesses the answers before the contestants. ITV’s Catchphrase Christmas Special is the perfect opportunity for you and your family to passionately shout stuff at the television as if those in the studio can actually hear you. Only this time, you can try to outsmart the celebrity guests Warwick Davis, Katie Price and Christopher Biggins.
With the goal to raise money for their chosen charities of ‘Little People UK’ (Davis) which supports those with dwarfism, Vision Charity (Price) which helps those who are visually impaired and a charity aiding those with Bowel Cancer (Biggins), the three celebrities decode short animation clips in order to guess popular phrases. This idea of ‘saying what you see’ does indeed go awry from time to time and leads to some very strange guesses. Warwick Davis is a whizz at the game from the get-go and by the end of the first round, he has £1,100 while Price and Biggins have only managed to win £100. Seeing the lightbulb moment on each person’s face as the answer (or more often than not, another wacky and incorrect guess) finally dawns on them is great fun but the sound effects Warwick Davis makes when he thinks he’s got the answer is downright hilarious.
Biggins is definitely the greatest source of entertainment; his comical comments keep you laughing throughout, such as when he playfully states “what a stupid game this is” when he can’t figure out the answer. At one point, when the phrase ‘Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat’ was proving to be the most challenging, he actually walks offstage and asks one of the live audience members for the answer. The unashamed, nonchalant way in which he does this makes it even more amusing. Katie Price is a bit of a mixture, in some rounds her face remains completely blank (and is rather funny in its cluelessness) but during a bonus round, she guesses the phrase within about ten seconds and instantly wins £1000.
The host and presenter Stephen Mulhern does a fantastic job with keeping the atmosphere lively and the audience engaged. He speaks directly to the viewers at home at one point, jokingly thanking us for our patience while the contestants continue to scratch their heads. It is indeed the interactive nature of this game show that makes it so successful; the audience can feel like a part of it and play alongside the contestants at home.
Things start to become increasingly tense and nerve-racking when Warwick Davis must take on the final “Super Catchphrase” pyramid after beating his fellow contestants: he has only sixty seconds to work his way up the pyramid to win a grand total of £50,000. It’s great to see his enthusiasm particularly when he gets the chance to double the total sum given to the charities chosen by Price and Biggins. Without being too cheesy, it is a nice reminder of the spirit of giving which makes Christmas such a special time. Although he narrowly misses out on the full amount, he does an excellent job and leaves with a total of £30,600 for ‘Little People UK’. ‘Catchphrase’ is perfect for a bit of light-hearted entertainment or for that one annoyingly competitive friend to have their moment to shine…even if this moment is restricted to your living room.