The Noel Edmonds Show (ABC, 1986)
Noel Edmonds is someone whose TV career I have followed for a long time, from Telly Addicts to Deal Or No Deal, and much else besides. But I recently discovered that Noel, who has always come across as ambitious, also had an attempt at hosting a TV show in America. Would he be able to have success in the most difficult of markets? I managed to find a couple of editions on YouTube, so this is what happened.
In the summer of 1986, shortly before what turned out to be the final series of The Late Late Breakfast Show, Noel hosted five hour-long late-night shows on ABC, in what would essentially be a variation on what he was doing in the UK. The aim was to present Noel’s style to American viewers, and he would be helped in this by the typically overexcited studio audience who were clearly looking forward to what he had to offer.
Noel also had a big stage with a sofa on it, can you believe it, he was living the dream that’s for sure. Among the various features were interviews with celebrity guests including pop stars and comedians (some of them live via satellite), along with music performances. There was also something that Noel has always seemed to be rather fond of, which was to get some people on stage and make them do some mildly silly stunts while everyone laughs.
There were also some attempts to try and set some unusual world records, all fitting in with Noel’s desire to try out things that are a little different. But was any of this a success though? Well the fact that The Noel Edmonds Show only ran for one week is something of a clue. Noel seemed to have a good time, and hoped that he would be invited back for more, but this didn’t happen, and there were only five editions.
From what I can find, the response from the viewers and critics of the time was exactly what I excepted it to be really, mostly consisting of “who is this guy? Is this what passes for funny in England?”. Not long after, following this disappointment, Noel was back in the more familiar surroundings of the UK, and he went on to further success in the late-80s with The Saturday Roadshow.
However, Noel did eventually return to America, as about a decade on from this show, two editions of Noel’s House Party were made there. These didn’t really go down that well with viewers though, and Noel later felt that doing these specials was a little too gimmicky and expensive, meaning his dream of being a star on both sides of the Atlantic was never really fulfilled.