Move On Up (Channel 5, 1997)
When Channel 5 launched, among their earliest shows that I enjoyed watching were the game shows that they had to offer including Whittle and 100% that were usually shown around 6pm. But of course, these couldn’t go on endlessly, and when the first series of these finally came to an end, they had to be replaced with something else. So one of the second wave of game shows was Move On Up, which was hosted by Richard Morton.
Every day five contestants took part in various fast-moving general knowledge rounds. They stood on what resembled a flight of stairs, and if they buzzed in and got the answer right to the first question they would “move on up” to the top step, and the aim was to remain there. This clearly isn’t a show where you can discuss the tactics of how to win in great detail.
They would then be asked three questions, before the next chance to move on up for the others came along, with each correct answer being accompanied by a Fifteen-To-One-style “ding”. There was then a round which featured a list of five items, and the contestant would have to name as many as they could in ten seconds, and the more they get, the points they score, with all five contestants doing this. For some reason I remember that when a contestant got an answer wrong Richard would say “hard lines” every single time.
After the break, contestants are asked three questions again, but this time they are all on various categories, and again there was a chance to get into pole position. The final round was the straightforward buzzer round, with points for correct answers, and points deducted for wrong ones. The winner goes through to the final, also it doesn’t seem to matter what position on the stairs they are by this point, just as long as they have the highest score.
At the end of every show tomorrow’s contestants were announced. This rather than making people want to watch again tomorrow simply gave away that they were making the whole week’s worth of shows all in one day. Also, there was a weekly final on Friday where the four daily winners plus the highest-scoring runner-up take part, with the prize for the overall weekly winner being a nice night out in London, and the runners-up win a notebook. Big budget stuff this wasn’t.
Move On Up wasn’t that great a show really, it definitely wasn’t as good as Whittle, so why write about it at all? It is simply because I do remember watching it, and I felt it deserved a review two decades on. Thankfully, Richard would go on to host the much better Channel 5 game show Win Beadle’s Money a couple of years later. Move On Up did have a brief revival though a few years later when there was a repeat run on Challenge, but it doesn’t even have a Wikipedia entry, although there is one full edition on YouTube.