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Come Dine With Me

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Channel: Channel 4 / Genre: Cooking

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    167 Reviews
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      13.11.2012 14:31
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      Good interesting funny tv programme.

      The aim of this programme is to win £1000, you have to create a 3 course dinner for 3 or 4 other guests in your home, provide alcohol to drink, the entertainment, and canapes if you wish. I have seen some people on this show who have had basic entertainment such as a jacuzzi, scottish dancing or some just get the good old karaoke machine out.

      The show follows the contestants throughout their whole day, whether they are getting last minute haircuts, last minute ingredient shopping, their cooking throughout the whole day including their food preparing and their baking. Some people that I have seen on the show do indeed cheat and get a private caterer or a chef in to prepare some of the meals, the producers of the show do not seem to care about this however as it is the persons own personal choice.

      The people who are coming to the dinner party all live around the same area in a town or city, they arrive to their destinations by taxi and leave by taxi. You see the contestants walking towards the houses and then entering via the front door, once all the guests have arrived they are then allowed a quick snoop around the hosts house. Find alsorts of dirty secrets within their personal posessions, one show I watched, one woman owned a whip in her bedroom.

      Once the night is over and the guests leave they have to rate the evening based on the food, the entertainment and the hosting skills, they mark the host out of 10. They hold up white bits of card with black large lettering on. The lowest I have personally seen awarded was a 4. Once they have done this everynight, the points are totalled up and the person with the most points at the end of the week wins, it is then up to the last host of the week to present the standings, they walk into the room with the money laid on a silver platter and scroll in the middle, they read the scroll with the standings on out to the room. The winner is then announced and this round of come dine with me meetings is finished.

      The contestants on the show are normally a very varied bunch and some are very fiery and are up for confrontation and trust me you do see a lot of that. Some people go on there and are very genuine and some do not hold back and are quite two faced.

      I know that the show is now aired on C4, More 4 and E4, giving you lots of choice of which channel you wish to watch it on. They all show different episodes so the choice is even better. The commentator adds the best bit of the show, he is hilarious and always has snidey comments towards the contestants, he has a cheeky answer to their comments when they are talking to the camera, he is very sarcastic and this makes the programme as good as it is, I think the commentator is called Dave Lamb.

      I would recommend watching this programme if you want a good laugh and are stuck for something to watch, it is unbelievably funny.

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      29.11.2010 13:09
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      Dave Lamb is a legend!

      I personally tend to find there is very little that can entice me to watch TV at the weekend these days. Even as a Bond fan, seeing the same film shown for two consecutive weekends can get a little bit tedious! However on a Sunday afternoon More 4 tend to show a weeks worth of Come Dine With Me in one go, usually the show is on every weekday for 30 minutes on Channel 4 and concentrates on a single contestant out of the five participants. However here you get the full picture and get to see all five shows from the week rolled into an omnibus edition in one hit.

      So the show is basically a competition between five people to dine, entertain and serve a dinner party. Everyone gets to visit each others house and get to know the people they are competing against. The catch is the five people are strangers and have no idea who they are up against. The prize at stake is £1000 cash.

      As you can imagine the lengths that people will go to and ensure the dinner party goes smoothly is somewhat extreme, the more extravert the person the more the wacky ideas they have for a menu. The food itself can range from the dire to the impressively superb and the way in which the program has been edited serves this purpose well. It is a strange, if not piece if car crash TV, to watch as you tend to see some players making notes of what the others like and how they prefer to eat food from the mannerisms and the comments said. For me this just adds to it as they playing the game in its entirety.

      Everyone is nice to each other to start with, but the flipside of a situation can occur quite easily, if two people don't like each other, for example if one person has said a comment to which the other has taken offence then the point given after the meal has finished can be interesting to say the least as there is some definite ploys being played out. The most obvious one is always the use of alcohol to simply get everyone juiced up, this does genuinely work on the basis that people just let themselves go and relax more than what they would normally do. However on occasions this has backfired and the host was last seen sleeping off her hangover, while the guests had to cook the meal! Other occasion some guests haven't bothered to turn up at the next house due to illness, this just makes great entertainment to watch as the remaining people usually ask what the problem actually was when they are perfectly fine. Not to mention the person who fell asleep at the table. Usually it is just a clash of personalities and views and when they fire off over the dinner table, it can be a case of tin hats on!

      In an effort for the people to get to know who they are competing against they are allowed to go around the house to get a closer look. This involves going down wardrobes and usually ends up bouncing on the bed. I like these bits as the audience gets to understand who they actually are and is allowed to make up there own opinion. As you can imagine the scope is open to everyone to apply for the show as a contestant, so every now and then you get a character that kind of breaks the mould in who they are, whether they are gay, transvestite or even the occasional person who has had a sex change. Not only does this stoke the fire, but makes you know for sure that something is going to happen with the reactions of the other guests that as part of the audience will make you either cringe because of the fact that they have shown who exactly they are or laugh because the situation is so stupid that the seriousness just makes it become a comedy.

      Some of the people who take part are nothing but know-it-alls and they become totally oblivious to the feelings they provoke, in some shows this culminates in a rather awkward or heated conversation around the table. Others try too much to impress, the women who had her food bought in from the restaurant next door via the back door because she didn't want to cook or the contestant that bought a small cut of perrsonalised carpet as a dinner gift with a bottle of wine, he actually owned a carpet shop. Next time you watch it, keep an eye on how people dress, for me there is some cases where it is over the top. However it is again the reaction from others that provides the entertainment, especially if asked to wear slippers when visiting a house.

      Overseeing the proceedings is narrator and storyteller Dave Lamb, an actor by trade who isn't afraid of giving his point of view throughout the show. In fact he is quite harsh in places, especially when a contestant is trying to cover up a botched attempt with their cooking, what he does is adds another dimension to it and keeps the whole thing going at quite a good pace. Lamb never meets any of the contestants and is only heard in voice over. This is undoubtedly his show and from watching this you know straight away that he has a power that allows him to comment and basically take the mickey out of the people in the show, some deserve it fully for being either wine snobs or crossing the line. Combined with the quite clever editing of the show it makes it look as if he stirs things up from the sideline, for example he will come out and say something along the lines of "I hope so and so doesn't do that as so and so wont like that addition to the table!" The next thing you know is the incident that was trying to be avoided has happened and vegan is totally unhappy with the food served and a scene has been caused. From the audience point of view it's hilarious but from the point of view of the dinner table it's far from funny. Taking this to the full life-cycle, various little snippets of the "victim" and the instigator are used with them explaining really what their point of view and why they have been upset is shown, however this is where Dave Lamb comes into the forefront as he just comments away and adds what can only be described as a commentary track to what is happening on screen.

      The winner is always decided after the last meal and although the scores are given at the end of each night, it is the final evening that the winner is unveiled and the money given out. It usually goes to the person who deserved it the most and I usually agree with that, but there are times that the winner really does come from nowhere.

      For a 30 minute program it does entertain, yes there is a re-cap at the beginning of each show of what has been shown in previous programs, but this is expected when a Come Dine With Me omnibus is broadcast, they have also done the obligatory celebrity version and the one with Christopher Biggins and Edwina Curry was a hoot. Biggins got his housemaid to cook while he watched TV!

      Overall I enjoy this as a bit of fun to kill a couple of hours or even just 30 minutes. At the end of the day it's a simple format that can bring a lot more than people think. I find it fun, and look forward to the parts that flare up which in turn heats up the rivalry and lifts the show a bit more which makes it interesting and very entertaining.

      As they say in the show, all recipes are available at the Channel 4 website.

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      • More +
        16.10.2010 18:34

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        can watch it mainly because the commentator

        Come dine with me...the name says it all- a group of unknown people visit each others house. The host makes food to the best of abilities and the guests rate them and the one who gets the most points wins. the winner gets £1000 cash. It is aired on Channel 4 but can also be seen on E4.
        But the most interesting part is the commentary by Comedian Dave Lamb. He is the one who makes me watch this programme. He is hilarious.
        Other the commentator, some recipes on this show are good too. it shows some amazing twists to the usual recipes- people owns additions to make the recipe special.
        Some people can cook and host the dinner parties really well and some are just useless. From entertaining their guests to arranging tables to making great food and making their guests laugh- all these makes the guests rate them on a scale of 1-10. But i don't think i can tolerate some guests coming to my house, checking my rooms, wardrobes and then comment badly about my food. So i just like to watch but wont like taking part in it.
        If you think the food is good, then the recipes can also be seen online in channel4 website.

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        11.08.2010 20:21
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        Great for a light hearted programme.

        This show is mad! I do love it though, it's a reality tv show where 4 or sometimes I've seen 5 contestents have to cook a 3 course meal for the other contestants, each contestent has a go on 4 or 5 consecutive nights - they must be so full or starving depending on whose cooking!!

        Sometimes I think they do stuff on purpose just to make it totally mad. On the evening the guests all arrive, there can be a theme if they choose, the score is supposed to be on the whole evening plus entertainment not just the cooking which if you like cooking like me can be a bit of a put off! So the contestant can if they wish get someone else to do the cooking put on a fabulous evening and win!

        I've seen shows where the guests just end up fighting or messing up the house, and shows where the guests argue or are totally rude, it makes me laugh because the comentator always says something sarky which I presume the people will hear when they watch themselves at home on the tele for years to come with repeats!

        In some shows the guests are allowed to look round the house of the host and make comments!

        The funniest shows are the celebrity one's they are usually totally mad and end up in fights or just plain stupid I guess cause they're not taking it all that serious although of course the winners money goes to their chosen charity.

        At the end of the evening each of the guest scores out of 10 how the host has done and after everyone's had a go the winner is announced they win £1000.

        I guess it's a mix of comedy, cooking and entertainment I don't think master chef would be too impressed!!!

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        28.06.2010 23:23
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        A great show to watch if you are free.

        Come Dine With Me is a reality tv show, aired on channel 4 at around 6-7pm.

        In a nutshell, it is about 5 ordinary people who take it in turns to host a dinner in their own home, using their culinary skills to impress each other. After the meal each person will give the host a score out of 10 which is based on the events of the evening, ie food presentation, taste, general atmosphere at the dinner table etc. The winner gets a cash prize of £1000.

        It may sound a little ordinary, however it makes pretty good tv. I find that these days there are too many cooking shows, but mix it up with a bit of reality and this makes for a pretty good watch. Not that I would stay at home especially to watch it, but when it's on, it makes an entertaining watch.

        So why is it interesting? I find that no two episodes are ever the same. The people are different, the personalities are different the food, houses, way food is served is very rarely the same. I find it very interesting to see how 5 complete strangers interact, and get on at the dinner table. It gets especially good if there is conflict between the people, (it makes better tv) especially when 2 personalities are so different to each other.

        There isn't really much more to it. Some people can get unfair with the marking, especially if they come to not like the other person but that is all part of the show. As I said before, it's an entertaining show but something that isn't really worth staying in for. You can also grab some pretty nifty cooking ideas from it and the recipes are put on the channel 4 website. It's also amusing to see the lengths that some people will go to to try and win that cash prize. With the hiring of musicians, dancers and entertainers.

        Overall a good show.

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        20.06.2010 19:45
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        Brilliant reality tv

        I am a complete reality tv addict, and this has to be one of my favourite shows. Although i'm not normally a fan of cooking shows, this is a definate exception.

        The concept of the show is basically four (or sometimes five) strangers take it in turns to host a dinner party, cooking three courses and attempt to WOW their guests. Some hosts attempt to lay on some entertainment in order to impress more - there's been magicians, singers, even can can dancers!!!

        After each meal, the guests will mark their host out of ten, taking into account both the cooking and hosting skills. At the end of the week, the winner will win £1000 so its definately worth them pulling out all the stops to try and win!!

        Dave Lamb does the voice over for the show, and his witty sometimes biting comments are one of the things that really makes this show for me. He even has a fan page on Facebook!!

        There are also celebrity versions of the show, and there has been a whole host of them on there, from comedians to footballers. These shows are even funnier than the normal ones and we get a different insight into what some of the celebrities are like - even vulnerable at times. All the celebrity winnings go to their chosen charity.

        Come Dine With Me is getting increasingly popular and was recently nominated a TV Award. I love this show and hope it long carries on!!

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          06.06.2010 19:53
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          Stick 4/5 people together for a week to host dinner parties for a week and you get this!

          Come Dine With Me is one of the very few reality shows that I actually enjoy watching. There is something about watching people rate each others dinner parties in the taxi on the way home. This is at least part of the reason that I enjoy this show and its growing success would suggest that I am not the only one who really enjoys this show.

          Come Dine With Me features four or five people who, throughout four or five days, each put on a dinner party for the other members. This occurs within the same city and generally there are a couple of people who don't really get along. In the taxi ride home they then rate each others food/evening. At the end of the week the results are added up and the person with the most points receives £1000.

          Each guest is featured on a half hour programme in which we follow them cooking the meal, the reaction of the menu to the other guests and the actual dinner party at the end. After this we see each member rating the night. Each episode is shown on a different night and also showing on Saturday afternoons all in one go. The newer format see's all guests holding their dinner party in the same one hour slot. I like the older version because you get a more in-depth look into the evening and the process leading up to it. However the one hour programme requires less commitment to watch and you don't have to concern yourself with ensuring that you watch every episode so you can be sure of what is happening.

          Not everything goes smoothly, with mistakes in recipes and some people being generally unappreciative of others. Of course with it being reality tv and bringing strangers together to spend a week together you will get some personality clashes. Most people remain civil about their differences and you won't see any Big Brother style arguments.

          There is no doubt that what makes the show is the sarcastic narrator Dave Lamb who is always on hand to make witty comments. I doubt the show would be as popular or as entertaining if it wasn't for him.

          I personally couldn't go on the show, I am far too fussy an eater (plus I'm vegetarian) but I can imagine it to be a fun week for the contestants. I will remain a watcher though for its entertaining purposes.

          Amongst the regular episodes they will have celebrity specials. Personally I prefer the episodes with 'regular' people in them, but each to their own.

          I would recommend this show, even if you don't particularly enjoy reality tv as it is different from the rest. It feels less forced, though its obvious at times that people have been picked because they won't get along with others or will rub others up the wrong way. Some contestants may be considered pretentious as well which can be irritating though Lamb makes good use of his wit in these conditions. Definitely worth a watch!

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            06.06.2010 18:00
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            Watch it.

            This is one of the few reality shows that I will watch and that my husband will watch with me, an even rarer account.

            The basic idea behind the show is this: four strangers, or five in the later series, who live in the same are invited to each others houses for four, or five, evenings in a row. Each has a turn at preparing and hosting their own dinner party and their guests, the other contestants, get to mark their efforts out of 10. No tactical voting is allowed and if the production team suspect that someone is giving all low scores they give them the choice of rescoring everyone or being disqualified from the competition. Whichever host scores the most wins £1000, if more than one draw then they share the prize between them.

            The show is either an hour long or several half hour shows are shown together from the same round of dinner parties. It can take up a whole afternoon some weekends, the children hate it but we love it.

            What normally happens is there is at least two people that the production team are sure will be at logger heads with each other. The food can be interesting but it is only half of the show. The personal relationships are the real focus of the show. As they show the meal they slot in sections of the interviews carried out with the host and all the guests throughout, this highlights how people are either too polite to be honest about the food or that they are completely two faced and everyone is asked for their opinions on everyone else.

            The best bit is the narrator without him the show wouldn't be worth watching. His dry witty comments about the contestants are just brilliant and make the show what it is: thoroughly entertaining!

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            23.05.2010 20:00
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            I LOVE IT!

            Come Dine With Me has become part of my weekend ritual - I love nothing more than relaxing in front of the cooking reality show.

            The Come Dine With Me format works like this - four or five strangers and thrown together and they take it in turns to host a dinner party, serving up a three course meal. After each party the guests marks the host out of ten, and at the end of week (after everybody has hosted a party) the winner is announced - that person receives a £1,000 prize.

            This cult cooking show started in 2005 and it has become a major success - millions of people up and down the country tune in, and the programme makers have also broadcasted a number of celebrity Come Dine With Me specials.

            The show used to be broadcasted on weekday afternoons (Monday - Friday) and each host would have a 30 minute programme dedicated to their party - these episodes can now be seen on More 4 during the weekend. However the new format, currently running on Chanel 4 in one hour slots, features all four / fivezdinner parties. Personally I like both formats and I find the show really easy viewing.

            It's interesting seeing what each host makes and ho they occasionally struggle to get their dishes out. We have all had kitchen disasters and the contestants on Come Dine With Me are ordinary people, so this is bound to happen!

            It's good seeing the meals that the hosts produce and if you fancy trying a recipe yourself you can get it on the Channel 4 website.

            Personally I prefer it when the contestants all get on well together, because I have watched shows that are just about bitching and arguing and this bores me a little. It's much nicer watching people have fun - although I suppose part of the beauty of the show is that you never know which way it's going to go!

            Without doubt the star of Come Dine With Me, the person that makes the show come together, is the narrator Dave Lamb - the man is hilarious - his wit really does make the show and it brings the whole programme together!

            If you like cooking or you're nosy and like watching people, then you should make sure you tune in to Come Dine With Me. I love this show and my weekends wouldn't be complete without it. A big fat five star rating from me!!

            Come Dine With Me has become part of my weekend ritual - I love nothing more than relaxing in front of the cooking reality show.

            The Come Dine With Me format works like this - four or five strangers and thrown together and they take it in turns to host a dinner party, serving up a three course meal. After each party the guests marks the host out of ten, and at the end of week (after everybody has hosted a party) the winner is announced - that person receives a £1,000 prize.

            This cult cooking show started in 2005 and it has become a major success - millions of people up and down the country tune in, and the programme makers have also broadcasted a number of celebrity Come Dine With Me specials.

            The show used to be broadcasted on weekday afternoons (Monday - Friday) and each host would have a 30 minute programme dedicated to their party - these episodes can now be seen on More 4 during the weekend. However the new format, currently running on Chanel 4 in one hour slots, features all four / five dinner parties. Personally I like both formats and I find the show really easy viewing.

            It's interesting seeing what each host makes and if you fancy trying a recipe yourself you can get it on the Channel 4 website. Call me evil, but I also like watching how the contestants occasionally struggle to get their dishes out. We have all had kitchen disasters and the contestants on Come Dine With Me are ordinary people - watching them makes a refreshing change from viewing polished professional chefs!

            Sometimes the contestants get on like a house on fire, but other times, they fight tooth and nail. Personally I prefer it when the contestants all get on well together, because I have watched shows that are just about bitching and arguing and this bores me a little. It's much nicer watching people have fun - although I suppose part of the beauty of the show is that you never know which way it's going to go!

            Without doubt the star of Come Dine With Me, the person that makes the show come together, is the narrator Dave Lamb - the man is hilarious - his wit really does make the show and it brings the whole programme together!

            Come Dine with me can be seen on Saturdays and Sundays on More 4 - it's broadcasted during the day, but if you still haven't had your fill (excuse the pun) by the time Sunday night arrives, then you can catch a new episode of Come Dine With Me on Channel 4 between 8 and 9pm.

            If you like cooking or you're nosy and like watching people, then you should make sure you tune in to Come Dine With Me. I love this show and my weekends wouldn't be complete without it.

            A big fat five star rating from me!!

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              19.05.2010 10:12
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              Quality TV suitable for kids which even your gran would love.

              I love cooking-and any cookery show that shows the 'home chefs' at their best (and worst) gets a thumbs up from me.

              A very long time ago Come dine with me had five contestants-one per day of the week and channel four broadcast them in the afternoons (making great viewing for students). Nowadays you get four contestants, however still get good viewing time slots (including Saturday afternoons) still making it 'student friendly'-there isn't many shows around that I watched as a student which I still watch without cringing-this is one of them.

              So what do the contestants do? They cook a three course meal for the contestants and get open up their homes to complete strangers! Some will push the boat out and create extra courses e.g. palette cleansers inbetween courses. Some will take it even further to win the grand prize by cooking various dishes as part of one course. However they decide to do it, they get judged on everything-the atmosphere, how they handle being a host/hostess, the menu etc etc.

              Each contestant marks the others out of ten-the one with the highest score gets the prize at the end of the week-which is £1,000 (so the grand prize is a grand).

              Why do I watch a programme that is clearly reality TV when I am against the general idea of watching a bunch of strangers make an idiot of themselves (I never watched BB-the concept was a tad bit confusing for me-watching people sleep-what's that all about). The reason is Come dine with me shows the average Brit in their own home cooking what they think is a worthy dish whilst opening up their homes to total strangers-I find these people brave. I don't think I'd have the 'bottle' to do that, and anyone who does deserves to be watched and admired, even if only for their disasterous attempt at a dish they've never tried before.

              If you watch the show and fancy trying out one of their dishes you can log onto the channel 4 website and get the recipes. Reality TV how in my opinion it should be.

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                12.05.2010 11:00
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                Don't do it!!

                'Come Dine With Me' Channel 4 weekdays around 7.30pm or an omnibus of all 4 shows from the week on saturdays from 4pm.

                **Basic concept of the show**
                Channel 4 take four complete stangers living in the same are of the country and they each take turns in playing host for the evening and preparing a so called "perfect dinner party", each night at the end of the evening that rate the host by giving them a mark out of ten. At the end of the week the host with given highest score by the other contestants is the winner. All the voting is done in secret so no one knows who's scored them what or who the winner is until the final evening. After the final meal the host for that evening reveals the overall scores and who has won and then presents the winner with the £1,000 prize money.

                **The Flaws**
                The four contestants they put together all come from different backgrounds and walks of life which makes for interesting viewing however it can be quite uncomfortable to watch people arguing over the same thing every night. Quite often theres one person who shouts the others down or rams thier oppinions down their throats and watching the other three contestants dread each night their clearly not having fun, which isn't fun to watch.
                As for the "perfect dinner party" i use this term very loosely some of the contestants on the show have barely boiled an egg before in fact in a show recently one woman actually neven cooked a thing she ordered it all in fromthe restaurant fromover the road brought in via the kitchen window and she went on to win the £1,000. Others take it very seriously and make their quest wear formal clothes and hiring in a butler, i don't think i've seen one yet that i would like to go to.

                **What does work**
                It's not all arguing and awkward conversation some shows are very funny and the contests make the most of the four nights. Some of the food and recipes look lovely and as with most shows the disasters are just as entertaining as the sucesses. The contestants definatly put in alot of effort considering all they get out of it is three meals out and £1,000, some contestants actually end up spending more money on the food, setting and entertainment for the evening than the prize money, which defeats the object to me.
                It is also always very amusing to watch the secret scoring, contestant one really slates contestant 2 and gives them a low score while contestant 2 thinks they've made a new best friend in contestant 1. It is very funny when someone is convinced they've hosted the perfect evening and then they come last, they can't believe it.

                **Conclusion**
                You have to take each set of four episodes on their own merit, you can't generalise the show, some are very funny and entertaining others are simpling watching four boring people eat dinner four nights in a row. The main conclusion has to be really that wether you enjoy watching this programme or not don't be a contestant.

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                  27.04.2010 16:35
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                  Enjoyable and fun to watch.

                  I personally find Come Dine With Me to be one of the best reality programmes on television, though I do think you would have to be mad to be a contestant!

                  The basic gist behind the programme is that an individual (usually a general member of the public, though there have been some celebrity editions) hosts a dinner party for four other people who will mark the party at the end of the night out of 10. The score is usually based upon the hospitality skills displayed as well as the food that is presented. At the end of all 5 dinner parties, the winner is announced and they walk away with £1000.

                  I have been watching Come Dine With Me ever since it started in 2005 and have been hooked into watching it whenever it comes on the television, even going as far as to watch old episodes on Channel 4 On Demand when I'm bored.

                  I find the people that take part in the show are usually pretentious idiots that have nothing better to do with their time than brag and put everyone else down. The amount of times I have seen a contestant who says that they are the best dinner party host, only for it to all go wrong and them to be brought down a peg or two...completely hilarious!
                  I like the occasional few that say they are taking part to see if they are able to cook well under pressure, those are usually the ones that triumph in the end as they aren't looking to just win the money.

                  For me, the best parts are seeing what the people are going to cook and the narrator of the show, Dave Lamb. The menus that are presented by the contestants are usually well over their abilities and it is the funniest thing watching them trying to cook something that they have never attempted before, only for it to fall apart right at the last minute.

                  When you add to this the commentary, with the bitter wit and sarcasm after everything a host says, you have one genius programme to watch. The narrator literally says everything you are thinking (well maybe only everything I am thinking...I am a bit of a sarcastic so and so) and makes some quite hilarious quips that you know would get on the participant's nerves if they could hear him.

                  I do also like when a deserving individual wins the money at the end of the week, as it shows that the scoring has been fair and if their menu has been the best then they are the one who should get the money. Only occasionally does this not happen, with me not in agreement with who won on the show, like I'm part of it (...you have to score them yourself, even though you aren't eating the food!).

                  In most episodes you can almost be guaranteed that two or more of the hosts won't get along, as one will deem themselves better than the others or there will be a clash of personalities. The drama just adds to the genius of the programme as you can see who really takes himself too seriously and is in it to win it.

                  I also find it very cringe-worthy to watch some of the after dinner entertainment that has featured on the episodes, such as belly dancing, magicians, the Chuckle Brothers and various half naked Lycra clad muscled men giving out cocktails to the other participants...I always wonder why they thought it was a good idea in the first place!?

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                  27.04.2010 15:52

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                  Not one of Channel Four's best, but still popular

                  This is a Channel Four programme, generally shown in the evening at around 8 pm. Basically, four members of the public host an evening dinner party for the other three people, their 'rivals'. After the dinner party, the three guests give the evening an overall mark out of ten, and the person with the highest number out of thirty wins the competition.

                  As always with these kind of programmes (e.g. 'Wife Swap') the people are generally the complete opposite of each other (typically a devout vegetarian dines at the home of a meat-lover), and this can increase the tension in some cases.

                  I find the narrator's voice incredibly grating - it's very hard to form your own opinions on the people when the narrator keeps chirping in with insensitive (supposedly funny) comments.

                  It's not really my kind of reality TV programme, as the contestants seem to have become more and more bizarre and self-obsessed since the programme began. The only reason I would watch it would be to learn a few cooking tips - in that sense it can be fairly educational, but if you're looking for real cooking tips it's better to watch something like Jamie Oliver or Master Chef.

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                  13.04.2010 12:05
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                  Watch if only for Dave Lamb's commentary.

                  The premise of this programme shown on C4 at 5.30pm Monday to Thursday is amazingly simple yet very effective as an entertainment programme.

                  Usually, four members of the general public (all strangers to each other) visit each other's homes to attend a dinner party and then rate the evening in secret, giving scores out of 10.

                  Now for me, the thought of having 3 strangers come to my house expecting me to entertain and feed them would fill me with absolute horror but for those eager to have their '15 minutes' of fame, there appears to be no shortage of willing participants.

                  The main reason I watch this show is for the brilliant commentary that runs throughout the programme provided by Dave Lamb (a British actor and voice-over specialist best known for this progamme). His amusing, sarcastic and sometimes extremely cutting banter often has me laughing out loud and without him, the show would be pretty boring!

                  It is interesting to view the different personas that make up the people who volunteer to go on this show. The prize is £1,000 in cash although quite often, seeing the luxurious pads in which some of them reside, this would count as loose change to them. Despite this the competitive vibe is usually stronger with these 'successful in life' types - enough for them to pull out all the stops in a bid to win.

                  It is easy to spot those who are strategic players, as in they vote low despite an obviously good evening with exceptional food in the sneaky hope that their fellow contestants are more honest than themselves, and will vote their evening higher, thus ensuring themselves a good chance of winning.

                  Their behaviour is often in stark contrast to the much more honest members of the group who give a nine or ten (therefore ensuring that they themselves probably won't win) despite probably needing the money more!

                  I did see one episode where one person kept given 1s and 2s and therefore her strategic play was so obvious they actually made her redo her votes and she reluctantly gave 4s an 5s instead!

                  Some contestants are so set on winning it has been known for cheating to take place from having an assistant to getting everything in from the local takeaway or having a professional chef cook most of the food! Also there are often some cringeworthy attempts to gain favour in the name of entertaining from getting your 14 year old to sing songs to having half naked girls (and sometimes boys) wait on your guests, or dance for them. This gives Dave Lamb plenty of ammunition to spice up his commentary and all adds to the hilarity of the programme.

                  The programme is edited very well so that all the best bits are there for us to witness - especially when there are accidents in the kitchen, flops coming out of the oven or a good old row brewing or a budding romance blooming amongst the participants.

                  Occasionally the programme is let down by the chosen participants in that they are as boring as watching paint dry but this seldom occurs and even when it does the editing and commentary help to give a much needed injection of humour and appeal.

                  Occasionally a celeb version of this show is done, but I think the performances that 'Joe Public' put on are far more entertaining!

                  Thanks for reading. x
                  also on Ciao under Ryanellaxx

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                    12.04.2010 14:12
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                    See human behaviour in action though the prism of cooking!

                    This show is based upon a simple idea - each participant in a show, usually consisting of 4 or 5 strangers, hosts a dinner party, buys and cooks their own food and secretly rate each other out of 10.

                    It neatly combines the fascination people have with peeking into other people's lives with the other current obsession on our tv screens, food. Watching them cook, lose their cool and pull it out of the bag is entertaining, but it isn't the key part of the programme.

                    One is given the impression (or illusion) that food and the way we relate to it, tell us a lot about a person's character.
                    Perhaps the most interesting programmes are when you have one unsympathetic character that makes you tell yourself inwardly 'look people like that really do exist!'

                    It is referred to as a kind of a reality television, unfairly because that genre in my opinion has been sullied by some awful programmes. Nevertheless it does have the element of reality tv in the sense that it is ordinary people in candour - insomuch as thats possible in front of tv cameras! And there are those awkward situations or character clashes that people enjoy seeing on reality television programmes. In fact Come Dine somehow makes these types of situations that much more interesting than they would be if people were sharing a house or on a tropical island. I can only imagine contenstants are vetted or some individual programmes are scrapped, as quite often the alcohol is flowing. There are few hostile confrontations. Lowbrow television, it is not.

                    The other reality element here is the rating system which gives us a chance to see whether we are watching a bunch of hypocrites, bent on winning at all costs or decent people. Mostly, they are the latter.

                    The great thing is that in this celebrity obsessed world the show with ordinary contestants is usually much more entertaining than the Celebrity Come Dine With Me. A message there?

                    The witty banter of Dave Lamb is, upon occasion, downright hilarious and is a central part of the enjoyment of the show.

                    The unsung heros of this show are the editors, they do a fantastic job in cutting out any chaff and picking up the most interesting situations. It means that even on the few occasions when the participants are as bland as their food, there is still something to keep your attention.

                    Come dine with me is one of the few shows I bother watching on television these days (I prefer to choose what to watch via internet) and I highly recommend it to anybody who wants a laugh or to 'marvel' at how people behave.

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