Skull (CITV, 1990-1991)
I’ve already written about why I was a fan of the rather spooky CITV Saturday Morning show Ghost Train, and one of the reasons was because of the game show segment that deserves a separate piece looking back at it. I don’t think that Skull featured in all three series, but it was definitely in the last two. Skull was a somewhat chaotic game that featured a lot of mess and it was played in three parts.
In the first part a contestant alongside one of the hosts of the show had to jump in a pool and find the skull, because this contained some questions. Whilst they tried to find it, the main villain Barry and his band of baddies would squirt them with gunge and everyone would cheer them on. When they did finally find it, the host, who was already exhausted after having to search, would ask three questions.
While the questions were asked, Barry and the baddies would be watching on, because if they got any of the questions wrong they would throw even more gunge over them, and the contestant would have a disadvantage in the second stage of the game. In case they got all three right, Barry would ask another question himself which was usually impossible with the hope that there would be at least one wrong answer resulting in a squirting.
The second part of the game wasn’t as messy, but was just as unpredictable. The contestant would enter a room with a chequered floor which contained blindfolded baddies holding maces (how many they faced depended on how many questions they got right in the first round), and they could only step on the white squares. If they got hit they would lose the game, much to the delight of Barry.
If they got past them without being hit though, they would enter another room to play the final game where they would have to face the man himself Barry. This time, both the contestant and Barry would be blindfolded, and if they managed to beat him in the main duel by successfully banging him on the head with their mace, they would win a prize that money can’t buy… that’s right, a jacket!
It was also rather amusing when in the final edition of the series the game reached its rather inevitable conclusion when all three hosts took part and pushed Barry in the pool at the end. Also, one of Barry’s baddies was played by Mark Heap who in more recent years went on to have a lot of success as a comic actor. I always thought that Skull was great fun and livened up Saturday Mornings just really because it was so ridiculous.