Checked content

Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway

Related subjects: Television

Did you know...

This selection is made for schools by a children's charity read more. Child sponsorship helps children one by one

Ant & Dec's
Saturday Night Takeaway
Current Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway Titles
Format Live entertainment
Created by Denise Harrop
Starring Ant & Dec
Country of origin  United Kingdom
No. of series 7 (including 1 Christmas special)
No. of episodes 52
Producer(s) LWT
(now branded ITV Productions)
and Gallowgate
Running time 75 minutes
(including adverts)
Original channel ITV
Picture format 16:9
Original run 8 June 2002 – present
Preceded by Slap Bang with Ant & Dec

Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway is a variety show shown in the UK on Saturday evenings on the ITV (and repeated on Sunday mornings on ITV2), presented and executively produced by Ant & Dec.

Each show ends with the main event in which a contestant from the audience attempts to win 20 items advertised during a randomly-chosen programme from the preceding week.

On 10 September 2005, ITV had a programme listing the best 50 shows in ITV's 50 years being on air. Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway came 2nd, being beaten by Coronation Street. Launched in 2002, the series was unbeaten in its timeslot for three years until scheduled against Doctor Who on BBC One in March 2005.

Saturday Night Takeaway will return on February 16, 2008.

Current features

Pre-titles clip

Before the titles a comedy clip is shown.

  • Series 1 & 2: Backstage
  • Series 3 & 4: Dressing Room
  • Series 5 & 6: Outside Dressing Rooms
  • Series 7: London Studios Canteen

The beginning games

All series. After a funny scene and what's coming up on the show Ant goes to the right hand side of the audience and picks one person at a time to comment on (usually something embarrassing) and would start up a game. Recent games include: Court in the Act, Where's your Shed at?, STOP! That's Mine, Stars in their Lives, Shame That Tune and This Is Your Diary.

Win The Ads

All series. The climax of the show, inviting a lucky member of the audience to "Don't just watch the adverts, win 'em". An ITV show is selected at random and 20 prizes are taken from the adverts shown within it. The contestant has 60 seconds (90 in the first series, recently sometimes 45 if the show was running short on time) to answer as many questions correctly.

After that, they have to decide to take the prizes and run or gamble it all on one final question. Get it right, and they win the lot. Get it wrong though and they lose everything and leave with just a roll of toilet paper.

In series 1, three contestants were chosen and whittled down to one in a short quiz. This was discontinued from series 2 and one was just selected at random.

In series 5, a new feature was added, which was to show them one of the prizes they picked to help the contestants whether to gamble or not.

Grab The Ads

All series. A similar advert contest for viewers at home. This has followed two formats.

Format 1 was calling one member of the public and asking them to pick a number between 1 to 9. Whatever prize is behind that number is theirs. This was only used in Series 1.

The current format, used since series 2, has seen a different celebrity each week playing a different game which is used to generate a number between 1 to 9 and the prize behind it goes to the viewer chosen before that turn.

Games include:

  • Human Roulette
  • Human Bingo
  • Box-to-Box
  • Human Archery
  • Cupid
  • Celebrity Baby Bounce
  • Musical Toadstools

Ant v Dec

Introduced in Series 5. The duo are given a certain task and they are given a week to learn a certain task and perform it live the next week. Kirsty Gallagher presents for this part of the show while David Goldstrom commentates on proceedings on certain weeks.

Series 5

Show Date Challenge Winner Ant's Score Dec's Score
1 12 February 2005 Gladiators Ant 1 0
2 19 February 2005 The Tightrope Ant 2 0
3 26 February 2005 Dog Training Dec 2 1
4 5 March 2005 Escapology Dec 2 2
5 12 March 2005 Ring Of Fire Draw 3 3
6 19 March 2005 Memory Test Ant 4 3
7 26 March 2005 Royal Wedding Song with G4 Dec 4 4
8 2 April 2005 Darts Ant 5 4
9 9 April 2005 Ventriloquism Dec 5 5
10 16 April 2005 Penalty Shoot-out Dec 5 6
  • The best remembered challenge is the motorbike stunt jump, which was called off after Dec had a bad accident during his jump, which resulted in a broken right thumb and his left arm in a sling for a few weeks afterwards, which became a source of much mirth on the show in subsequent weeks. Indeed, Ant's puppet of Dec in the ventriloquism challenge came with its own sling.
  • The winner of the challenge earned 1 point on the scoreboard (except for the week the accident occurred, where both Ant & Dec got a point since it was called off that week). In the end, Dec triumphed over Ant 6-5, winning the last challenge, the penalty shoot-out competition, to become overall winner. As a forfeit, Ant had to perform a bush tucker trial from I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, and sing a specially written 'loser's song', "I Am A Loser", to the tune of " We Are the Champions".

Series 6: The Rematch

Show Date Challenge Winner Ant's Score Dec's Score
1 16 September 2006 Abseiling Dec 0 1
2 23 September 2006 Sumo Wrestling Ant 1 1
3 30 September 2006 Wood Chopping Dec 1 2
4 7 October 2006 Rowing Ant 2 2
5 14 October 2006 Cake Baking Dec 2 3
6 21 October 2006 Forming A Boyband Ant 3 3
  • On the last show of this series, the contest was tied at three wins each. It came down to a Mini-golf putt-off, which Dec won. After Dec putted the winning ball, Ant's forfeit was to be locked in the stocks and have paint thrown at him by all the show's celebrity guests. Dec celebrated his second successful win by singing the Tina Turner song " The Best", and wearing a mock king's outfit.

Series 7: This Time It's Personal

Show Date Challenge Winner Ant's Score Dec's Score
1 8 September 2007 Speed Skating Dec 0 1
2 15 September 2007 Spelling Bee Dec 0 2
3 22 September 2007 60m Sprint Hurdles Dec 0 3
4 29 September 2007 Weather Forecasting Ant 1 3
5 6 October 2007 Breathing Underwater Dec 1 4
6 13 October 2007 Queen Tribute Act Dec 1 5
  • Dec won the competition for the third year running, leading Ant 5-1. Ant's forfeit was to play the "Celebrity Baby Bounce" game but instead of numbers he popped balloons filled with gunge. After the song had finished the remaining balloons were revealed to count as a score, for each balloon he popped one pair of his trainers would be saved from being let off into the sky by helium balloons.

Jiggy Bank

Introduced in Series 6. A member of the public is surprised live on television then have ride a moving robotic pig like a rodeo. The harder they ride the more cash they will get. The maximum win is £5,000. The remaining money not won is added as a bonus prize in Grab The Ads. As a joke the announcer in the commentary box or in series 7, a child voicemailing in from a mobile phone will say "Oink Oink, You Lucky Pig!" when the prize with the money remaining is revealed.

Beat The Boys

Introduced in Series 6. Two celebrities try to beat Ant and Dec's time around an assault course, using different vehicles every week. The vehicles have been specially modified to ensure that teamwork is vital in the game. Stuart Hall is the commentator.

Series 6 Leaderboard

Show Date Couple Ant & Dec's Car & Time Challenger's Car & Time Winner
1 16 September 2006 Phillip Schofield & Fern Britton Stretched Limo (3:25) Caravan (3:23) Ant & Dec
3 30 September 2006 Trinny Woodall & Susannah Constantine Girly Jeep (3:16) Boy Racer (3:15) Trinny & Susannah
4 7 October 2006 Ben Shephard & Penny Smith Camp-A-Van (3:59) Ice-Cream Van (4:01) Ben & Penny
5 14 October 2006 Harry Hill & Al Murray Wedding Car (6:18) Police Car (3:29) Harry & Al
6 21 October 2006 Wendi Peters & Jennie McAlpine Hippy Car (3:21) London Taxi Cab (4:25) Ant & Dec

The obstacles used in Series 6:

  • Eammon Holmes Cones:
  • Grab The Lads:
  • Celebrity Skittles:
  • The Brad Pitt Stop:
  • Shooting Stars:
  • G4 See-Saw:
  • Beckham's Golden Balls:

Most noteworthy race

  • Show 5: Ant & Dec lost the race to Harry & Al by 2 minutes and 51 seconds when it was looking like a victory for the duo. The reason being that their car broke down towards the end of the race and had to complete the rest of the course by foot.

Series 7 Leaderboard

Show Date Couple Ant & Dec's Car & Time Challenger's Car & Time Winner
1 8 September 2007 Tina O'Brien & Ryan Thomas Starsky & Hutch Stunt Car (3:52) Cagney & Lacey Police Cruiser (3:57) Ant & Dec
2 15 September 2007 Max Beesley & Jonathan Wilkes Safari Jeep (4:02) Ambulance (4:00) Max & Jonathan
3 22 September 2007 Alan Carr & Justin-Lee Collins Old People's Car (4:31) Catering Van (4:52) Ant & Dec
4 29 September 2007 Fearne Cotton & Holly Willoughby Army Jeep (6:38) Beach Buggy (6:18) Fearne & Holly
5 6 October 2007 Eamonn Holmes & Ruth Langsford Beach Car (7:14) New York Taxi Cab (9:14) Ant & Dec

The obstacles used in Series 7 so far are:

  • All Star Splat: Each team is given three custard pies and must hit and knock down at maximum three of the six celebrity faces.
  • Hook A Duck: The passenger must hook a duck from the pond using a long rod.
  • Drawbridge: The team must get out of the car and lower a door on a small castle whilst being attacked by numerous weapons by the other team.
  • See-saw: The team must balance over the giant seesaw.
  • Domino Rally Alley: The team must reverse and park in between the dominos, without knocking them over.
  • Car vs. Beast: A drag race with a remote controlled robot displaying a famous face or animal.
  • Tony Blackburn's Wheel of Steel: The team must continue to sing the song that stops playing in tune whilst they rotate on a giant turntable.

Failure to complete any of the obstacles correctly (bar the Drawbridge) will incur a ten second penalty.

Most noteworthy race

  • Show 4: Ant & Dec completed the track in 6:38, after falling off the turntable at Tony Blackburn's Wheel of Steel and losing 2 minutes, allowing Fearne & Holly to win by 20 seconds despite receiving ten second penalties at every obstacle with the exception of Hook A Duck and the Drawbridge (which carries no penalty). Had Ant & Dec not received a 2 minute delay, they would have won easily.

Celebrity guest announcers

The only new feature for Series 7. The continuity voice-overs have been done by a celebrity, mostly announcing Ant & Dec's arrival and what's next after the break.

The celebrities have been, in chronological order:

  • September 8: Simon Pegg
  • September 15: Daniel Radcliffe
  • September 22: Quentin Tarantino
  • September 29: Christian Slater
  • October 6: Harry Hill
  • October 13: Jordan (Katie Price) & Peter André

Previous content (alphabetical order)

Ant & Dec Undercover

Series 2-5. Ant & Dec, wearing heavy disguises, ambush fellow celebrities ( Simon Cowell being a famous, and popular, victim). When this item first began, they also fooled members of the public. This presumably started the failed series, Celebrity Stitch-Up.

Banged Up With Beadle

Series 1. This game only lasted one series.

Jim Didn't Fix It For Me

Series 1-3. A spoof of Jim'll Fix It, in which audience members who had written to Jimmy Saville in their youth, but never been lucky enough to fulfil their dreams, and having those dreams realised at last, 20+ years later.

Little Ant & Dec

Series 2-6. A pair of child "lookalikes" , Little Ant ( James Pallister) and Little Dec ( Dylan McKenna-Redshaw), to whom Ant & Dec delegate various interviews on the flimsy pretext of "we couldn't be bothered" and the pint-sized interviewers ask all sorts of blunt questions and bamboozle some surprisingly straight answers out of their victims. Victoria Beckham was asked what conceived meant and she told them it meant where her son got in her tummy. Such victims include Kevin Costner and Sarah Michelle Gellar. They had even interviewed Ant and Dec. At one time, there was a "Little Little Ant & Dec" where two even younger Ant & Dec lookalikes were on the show because Little Ant and Dec 'couldn't be bothered'. Following the axing of this segment, the pair hosted Jiggy Bank for Series 6 but have since now been dropped altogether.

Make Ant Laugh

Series 1. Ant is a bit of a miserable git so they've scoured the country to find some funny acts who must try to make Ant laugh within sixty seconds to win a trophy.

Opportunity Knocks: Again

Series 2-4. Based on the Saturday night television programme " Opportunity Knocks", enables members of the audience who previously starred on the expired programme, to act their performances again.

Home Run

Series 1-3. Each week Ant & Dec would be annoyed that some people on Saturday Nights would turn off the TV, put their coats on and...GO OUT!

Every week they would, through some sort of technology work, would surprise members of the public in a location in the UK (e.g. a cinema or a bingo hall) and reward someone £5,000 if they ran back home. The person who gets to their door to find the five grand would then be forced to read an oath, on their television screen, promising they will never go out on Saturday Nights again.

Saturday Cash Takeaway

Series 3. Nine popular takeaways are taken at random and one is selected by a member of the studio audience. The takeaway, which is being delivered to someone at home, has £1,000 stuffed in it.

The person who receives the takeaway then answers a question from their front door and if they get it right, they win the money, along with their food.

Saturday Night Pub Olympics

Series 4. One pub is chosen each week to compete in the "Saturday Night Pub Olympics", they are split into two teams and have to face each other three different events to decide to winning team, simple. Dickie Davies was on hand to commentate on proceedings.

What's Next?

Series 2-4. An item where Ant & Dec are presented with a challenge, of which they have no prior knowledge, and which is often embarrassing.


Series Start date End date
Series 1 8 June, 2002 20 July, 2002
Series 2 11 January, 2003 22 March, 2003
Series 3 13 March, 2004 17 April, 2004
Series 4 2 October, 2004 6 November, 2004
Series 5 12 February, 2005 16 April, 2005
Xmas Special
24 December, 2005
Series 6 16 September, 2006 21 October, 2006
Series 7 8 September, 2007 13 October, 2007
Series 8 16 February, 2008 TBA
Retrieved from ""