Simon Mayo is the new Blockbusters host

The Radio 2 DJ will front a revival of the quiz on Challenge this spring

Place those gonks in prime position and prepare to put yourself on the hot spot because quiz show Blockbusters is back, with Simon Mayo as host.


Two months after the death of former presenter Bob Holness, it has been announced that Mayo will front a revival, set to air on Challenge TV in the spring. And purists will be pleased to know that we won’t be seeing much tinkering to the format.

“No one needs to worry, it will be exactly the same — same set, same board, the same theme tune, although slightly updated,” the Radio 2 DJ told The Sun. “The prizes will probably be the same too, although you don’t win a dictionary, you win an e-reader.”

He added that, most importantly, “the spirit of the show will be exactly the same. That’s why I said yes.

“There are very few tried and tested TV formats where you don’t have to agonise over it. The great thing about it is everyone knows it works. It has a play-along factor.

As with the original series which ran from 1983 to 1993 on ITV, the new series will mainly feature members of the public, although now they will be of all ages rather than solely sixth-form students.

But Mayo also hinted to the newspaper that famous faces will also be given the opportunity to have a go. Could Labour leader Ed Miliband, who accidentally labelled the series “Blackbusters” in a tweet following Holness’s death, be invited?

Mayo said: “I think there is a lot of talk about a celebrity edition. I’ll have a word with the celebrity bookers. But if I were advising Ed I’d tell him to think again. It is a feelgood programme. It would be nice to do Bob proud.

“His legacy is so extraordinary which is why some politicians thought they ought to add to the condolences.”


Mayo also admitted he had already been asked for a P by contestants on several occasions.