A Tribute to Blind Date

Though online dating services have become a popular way of finding true love and expanding your dating circle, they were not always an option. In the 1980s, a dating show came on the air that helped both men and women have fun and find potential matches. The show, known as Blind Date, became a major success. Originally a British show, it also has had a successful US version.

UK Blind Date

With host Cilla Black, the original Blind Date aired from 1985 to 2003. The show's format was somewhat similar to the US show The Dating Game, which originated in the 1960s. The show's 60-minute format would start with three contestants of the same sex being introduced to the audience before Cilla would introduce a person of the opposite sex. This individual would ask questions of the three contestants (that he or she is unable to see). Then the contestant would make a final decision about whom he or she would like to go out on a date with and meet their match. The next episode would then interview the daters and get their feedback.

Beyond regular episodes, memorable specials include a wedding episode where past contestants tied the knot and a special tenth anniversary episode. Before becoming well known several celebrities also made an appearance on the show including, actress Amanda Holden. Claudia's humorous barbs where a popular part of the show as was the mysterious voice of Graham. Though he was never seen, Graham would make humorous comments about the contestants.

The UK version of Blind Date ended when its original and only host Cilla Black decided that she did not want to continue in her hosting role. Cilla was extremely popular with the audience and it was deemed that her character was irreplaceable.

US Blind Date

Though they share the same name, America's version of Blind Date is its own unique creation that combines reality TV and a dating service game show. Before getting on the show, contestants first go through a written interview and on air interview and yet more often than not the contestants are not well suited. The odd match ups make for hilarious television when the two strangers are first introduced too each other. The camera catches every moment as they go out to several locations with the date usually ending at a restaurant.

Set in a 30-minute format, the show combines sarcastic subtitles and animations that appear on the screen. Thought bubbles often pop up on the screen and make funny observations about what contestants are thinking. At the end of dates, a look at extended clips from the cutting room might be shown featuring funny date scenes that were cut for continuity or embarrassing moments known as the hall of shame. Some of the most memorable show moments have involved contestants getting naked in the Jacuzzi, visiting a nudist colony and a celebrity episode with Steve-O of Jackass fame.

The show aired from 1999 to 2006 in syndication and was hosted by Roger Lodge. Since it is a family show, the extreme moments have been unable to air on TV. The shows popularity lead to several DVDs being released, featuring nudity and other too hot for TV moments.

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