Tuesday, February 22, 2005



He was the bookies favourite, but that didn't stop Marcus Holt (22) from becoming the eighth contestant of Channel 4's smash hit show;

Death Row Big Brother

from being executed live last night, during the shows nail biting semi-final week.

Holts nomination, and subsequent execution helped DRBB break all known viewing records, finally allowing the show to see off its closest TV rivals, the BBC 2 archaeology show presented by former Pop Idol, Jennifer Khan (16);

Princess Diana, England's Rose: Exhumed.

And the previous ratings record holder, the Christmas 2004 edition of;


subtitled as a one-off for this festive show;

Eastenders: Apocalypse,

in which, controversially, the entire cast (save for chippie owner Ian Beale as played by veteran Eastenders actor Kate Thornton), are brutally killed in an Al Queda 'style' terror attack.

The thrilling climax to the show featured each cast member being summarily executed through beheading.

The episode aired as a Christmas lunchtime special, both proceeding and following the Queens address to the nation.

In fact, Thursday evenings gripping conclusion to ITV's very own reality gameshow;

Celebrity Jungle Hunt,

could only manage to pull in half the viewers that yesterdays DRBB execution achieved.

The finale to the ITV show, gave us both the triumphant victory of ex-golfer Duncan McGregor (44), as he successfully tracked, caught and killed, children's TV game show host, Will Mould (12) in a spike trap of his own making, and the tragic death of the shows co-presenter, Pokey (real name Martin Jenkins), during a live link to camera.

Jenkins (27) was segueing into a commercial break when he was fatally bitten on the right big toe by a female funnel-web spider, a deadly arachnid, native to the Australian outback where the show is filmed.

His on screen/off screen partner Baby Pete (15), (real name Lil' Jimmy Peters) said it'd been a terrible blow, but he would continue to present the bulk of ITV's output regardless;

"It's what Pokey would have wanted", Baby Pete told the amassed reporters, before breaking down in tears during the season finale press conference, held in the Hyatt Hotel, Sydney.

It was Death Row Big Brother however, that again set new standards for extreme reality TV, when the 'music teacher bludgeoner' from Shoreham on Sea, Marcus Holt, was executed live on yesterday evenings remarkable show.

'Abortion Tickles', the production company behind DRBB, even managed to throw in an additional surprise to proceedings when they used the diary room chair as the executioner's tool.

Interviewed directly after the show via an Internet web chat, the brains behind DRBB, Mark Canttrell, generously gave credit for this unique twist to widow and mother of two, Margaret Locke (47) from Kingston upon Thames, Surrey.

It was Margaret's suggestion, phoned in to the weekly competition run by DRBB's sister show;

DRBB: Victims Revenge,

that was chosen and subsequently used to such a dramatic effect yesterday evening.


"We were particularly impressed that Margaret's idea incorporated such an iconic symbol of the show", Canttrell explained, "and that this tied so neatly into the termination of Holt", Canttrell went on to say, "we believe that Holt would have approved, we knew he was a huge fan of the previous big brother formats".”

As is well documented, Marcus Holt had the lowest IQ in the DRBB house, Fifty-two.

There have been some widely reported debates in the media today regarding the execution, with particular focus on the question of whether it was right or not that Marcus Holt never actually knew what hit him.

It is certainly the case that in all previous executions, the contestant were informed well in advance of their impending fate.

This allows for the, 'soon-to-be-snuffed' as the The Mirror puts it in their daily DRBB column, to show repentance to God, to apologise to victims families, and more importantly for the ratings, to give the viewers an opportunity to see the contestants abject horror of facing their imminent, and typically very painful demise.

"It was a calculated risk, for sure...", Canttrell reflected honestly, during the informal web-chat.

The execution itself was a beautifully stage-managed piece of theatre. Prompting Helen Markwell, the New York Times DRBB overseas correspondent to gushingly declare;

"Even the legendary filmmaker, Alfred Hitchcock, would have been proud to have come up with this distinctive twist."

Interestingly, DRBB had already staged an homage to thriller film maker, Hitchcock, when Lee Arthur Pendrick (29), the fourth contestant to be executed, was terminated during week 5 with a ferocious knife attack in the shower room.


The DRBB viewers were informed at the very start of yesterday evenings show by presenter and former 'crack-whore' Donna MacLaine, that the dairy room chair had been wired up to deliver an electrifying 10,000 volts.

The contestants on the other hand, were oblivious to this, and at 8pm they started their daily routine of entering the diary room, one by one to be asked if they would like to confess to any further crimes they had yet to own up to.

Through a breathtaking piece of miss direction the viewing public were lead to believe that it would Masterson, not Holt, that would receive the killing blow.

However, it was during Holt's emotional confession to a further crime, which he claimed he had committed in his early teens during a stay in a Brighton hostel, that the switch was thrown and Holt literally fried to death before our eyes.

Unfortunately, Holt was in the process of explaining who the alleged murder victim was when he received the deadly charge.

Sussex police are now looking into the partially received information provided by Holt.

As critic for the Guardian, Jeremy Hunter, put it in his review of the show late last night;

"Never, have so many people jumped at precisely the same moment in the history of the world".

Naturally, several cases of heart failure, potentially caused by the shock execution have been reported around the country.

The shows production company again point to the disclaimer that precedes each show, thus giving them, they declare, an exemption from any harm caused through exposure to DRBB.

"As we get closer to the finale we really do need to crank the amps up to 11", Canttrell said online last night, referencing the 'mockumentary' motion picture, 'Spinal Tap', wherein 11 represents 1 better than 10.

And Canttrell is not wrong.

As we move into the final week of Death Row Big Brother and the final two contestants, Donald Masterson and Glenn Jones duke it out for sympathy in the public affections, Cantrell and his production team know that they will really have to create something quite unique to top the action we have seen so far from this remarkable series.

We look forward to Fridays DRBB finale with baited breath.

DRBB: Because you deserve it.

bb 3 eye

Previous DRBB articles;

DRBB: A reality game show for an insane world

1 comment:

Ship Creak said...

so, when does drbb make it onto our screens here in the 21st century?

will we see a DRBB - LB?

i for one might actually become a BB convert if this makes it onto the no-so-big screen.