NHP/NESR vote – The Top Ten

Among people like me, who developed their WAM fetishes in 1990s Britain, a debate has raged as to whether GYOB or NHP (and from hereon “NHP” will be taken to include NESR) was the greater gunge show. While I credit both shows in moulding me as a wammer, I have always been a gunged-in-the-wool NHP man, and always will be. In the years approaching my teenage, I even imagined myself as the presenter of a similar show, except in my show I had a female co-presenter, and well, you can imagine the sort of thing that went on…

NHP should be recognised for its many achievements – not least bringing gunge out of the realm of children’s TV and game shows and promoting it to a primetime slot. Suddenly the whole nation and its granny knew what gunge was, and there were actually some fairly big names signing up to go in the tank. And the great thing about doing mess on a Saturday evening was that the victims were dressed for a Saturday evening. I doubt any other show can claim as many gungings in skirt-suits and party frocks.

Noel and his team were extremely inventive when it came to the gunge and the means of delivering it. If you watch the Roadshow clips you’ll notice that the gunge varies a lot between gungings as the team were experimenting with different recipes. By the time the House Party came along they had more or less cracked the natrosol brew, and from then on the innovation came in the form of new gunging mechanisms. I know that purists see the classic tank as the epitome of gunging, and everything that came after as distracting and detracting from the WAM value, but personally the Trip Around the House is my fave – I love how the trip progressed with each turn adding new mess. And with the constant introduction of new gunging methods, came the sense that nobody was safe. Audience members could be plucked out and sent for a gunging, and when that became too predictable, the gunge started coming to the audience!

There’s also a longstanding debate as to what exactly Noel “the gungings are my least-favourite part of the show, honest” Edmonds got out of it all, but we’ve already had that discussion.

Of course, the real stars of the show are the ladies that featured in the poll. While my WAM interest may sometimes come across as mean-spirited, I do admire women who are good sports and can laugh at their own expense. It’s fair to say that everyone who put themselves forward were good sports, especially those not-so-popular celebs who got gunged as means of public penance. And for those who were put forward by someone else, well they had to learn to be good sports with very short notice. I hope all of them can look back with a wry smile.

One thing I noticed while compiling the list is that many of the clips are of very poor quality, and that’s a sad shame for such good scenes. YouTube offers some hope however; recently a channel called Brendon Tyler has been uploading some better quality scenes (from Wamtec?) and there are also some telly aficionados uploading full episodes every now and then. I’m sure that one or two people reading this (there are still people reading?) are sitting on gems, and if so, you know what you ought to do. Alternatively, the BBC could stop denying the public access to what they’ve paid for and open the archives. Just a thought.

Anyway, that’s enough of me wittering, let’s bring on the gunge!

At number 10, Samantha Janus’s Comic Relief curry house cameo is a surprise (for me at least) high-flyer.

At number 9, Anneka Rice faces her biggest challenge yet, embarking on a 50 minute trip around the house. (I did contemplate including the newly-unearthed extended footage, but we can’t be sure that the “double” is a woman. Quite likely they put a wig on a male crew member).

At number 8, Ulrika Jonsson, then a weather girl, experiences some unusual precipitation after losing the vote to a fellow meteorologist.

Déjà Goo at number 7! Anneka enjoys her trip around the house so much she travels back in time to ride the car wash.

At number 6, Annabel who? No, I don’t know either, but it’s a great gunging.

At number 5, how do they dupe a TV presenter into getting gunged twice? Thanks to the magic of not-quite-live TV, it’s a double w(h)ammy for suit-clad squealer Jenny Hull.

At number 4, it’s Vorders with her messiest product endorsement to date. What she should have done is consolidate her gunging into manageable monthly messings.

At number 3, the attire may be dated but the WAM appeal endures. Anthea Turner earns her Goo Peter badge.

At number 2, feels so wrong yet it feels so right! Hair-obsessed Charlotte gets a shampoo and set-up in Noel’s salon. I do hope no-one at work’s watching.

And so we’ve arrived at the unveiling of the TellyGunge community’s favourite clip. Sadly the clip quality makes it look a bit anticlimatic, especially the build-up, which someone decided to engrave onto stone tablets rather than use a VCR. But the technological limits don’t spoil the appeal of Nicola Stapleton’s tender 18-year-old body squirming under the yellow and black – THE NATION HAS SPOKEN! If you stare long enough at the yellow pixel at the end you might even catch some aftershot.


About TG

Hunter of WAM media, author of WAM fiction, founder and administrator of the independent and community-led blog https://tellygunge.wordpress.com/
This entry was posted in Discussions, Entertainment/variety shows, Gunge. Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to NHP/NESR vote – The Top Ten

  1. yuck53 says:

    Charlotte plus 9 celebrities, sounds about right. Charlotte’s place in second as the first NHP gunging and only none celebrity in the list speaks volumes for the quality, pedigree and general brilliance of the set up.

    A lot of the nine celebrities (especially Samantha Janus who surprised TG) are more famous now then they were then and since, of course, they were younger the gungings we have look like massive coups.

    Now I don’t agree with the concept of pitting NHP against GYOB when they provide difference services and more is better especially now when we don’t really have either what with what GYOB Live provides being so dubious.

    Never the less that is a very good summary of all this shows very best aspects when it came to gunge (ITV’s history of Saturday night show didn’t focus of the gunge element but may well have provided some missing clips.

    I agree with pretty much everything TG said although I will say that when used properly the Trip Round The Great House was unsurpassed it could also produce some disappointing anti-climaxes at times.

    The BBC should indeed open up the archive but last time they tried that they dropped it claiming it was too expensive. I can’t see them trying again any time soon not with the government breathing down their neck about their charter.

    Liked by 1 person

    • terroristpie says:

      I haven’t heard about them dropping the plan, I’ve read the whole thing is being tested and we can expect an autumn release


      • yuck53 says:

        When did you read that? It’s possible I’ve confused one project for another. It’s also possible they’re doing it to coincide with when they start charging for the iPlayer (so we can access what we’ve already paid for) which they now feel the need to do because of the government onslaught on their budget.

        But like all government assaults of yet they’re based on the idea that the electorate don’t understand the concepts behind the things they’re attacking so the can make incredibly bogus arguments with virtual immunity.


          • yuck53 says:

            Thanks very much…

            “As more and more people consumer TV…”

            😆 We all make typos but that’s not the most auspicious introduction.

            This idea sounds wicked though two or three things bug me:

            1. 10 000 hours will be available in the first year I don’t think that, that’s really that much given how much the BBC must have got. I don’t expect to see GYOB appearing anytime soon although I’d hope several classic childrens’ dramas appeared.

            2. The store will be geo locked, why? I can see why they would want to do this for the iPlayer to stop anyone coming and watching BBC content they haven’t paid the license fee for but they said this might appear in other stores. What’s the point of geo locking something you are selling to try and make money from, you just make less money. Any can’t I just buy something download it and then e-mail it to someone across the pond? I’m not sure that they’ve thought this through.

            3. “These have never been included in the license fee.” Except that our license fee has paid for the creation of all of them. Really when should be able to get access to all the anyway but the license fee is such good value for money I’m happy to pay for the BBC to keep going if they need our help.

            Thanks very much, again.


    • TG says:

      Yeah, I think the celebrity factor might have been behind Samantha Janus and Ulrika Jonsson. Personally I think they’re weak gungings and didn’t expect to see them do so well.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. henrylee1 says:

    Stapleton’s will always have a place in my heart as the first clip I ever downloaded online. It was 3mb, took half an hour and was rubbish quality but my god did it suddenly make me change the way I looked at the internet!


  3. BucketOfGoop says:

    Great write-up TG.

    As for the final 10 you won’t be surprised that I don’t agree with it. I could never fully appreciate the Nichola Stapleton gunging myself; it looked brutal but I really need to see aftermath, and there was too much foam. Still the Wammers have spoken 🙂


    • TG says:

      I voted for Stapleton but I share your frustration. She would have got to number zero if they hadn’t whisked her away so quick. It’s almost like there’s some law of nature that forbids flawless gungings.

      Liked by 1 person

      • yuck53 says:


        Yeah, but sometimes I think there also a law of nature that gets us better gungings than we might expect each time.

        I mind what are the chances the victim will position themselves correctly each time without leaning out of the way by chance?


  4. supersarahm says:

    Thanks so much for pulling this list together. I am also someone for whom NHP always had the edge over GYOB. Very surprised that Nicola Stapleton came top – the clip didn’t even make my top 10 due the the foam and aforementioned lack of aftershot.
    After previous polls I can’t say I’m surprised that the top 10 was so celeb dominated, although I am disappointed. This trend suggests that either a) people feel more attachment to celeb gungings as they know more about the individual’s personality and / or b) people just voted for the the names they recognised on the list and didn’t bother checking the much better non-celeb gungings that have missed out!
    On that note, how would everyone feel about running the exact same poll again but restricted to non-celeb NHP clips? Obviously we know what would be no. 1, but I’d be interested to see what else comes high on the list. (Before anyone suggests it, it wouldn’t be the same just to look at the non-celeb placings lower than the top 10 in this original poll.)


    • BucketOfGoop says:

      I think that would be a good idea, it would be very interesting.

      Just another note on this vote, the thing is it was just “pick out 9” and you can kind of see how Stapleton’s would be in the nine above others; but I’m not sure how many would have it as their absolute favourite, which is where preferential voting or a ’round two’ might have come in handy.

      I’m not THAT fussed though, I thought TG did a great job with this and I had fun with it; was just a thought that could be used when considering future votes.


      • TG says:

        And after the results come the recriminations over the voting system! Personally, I don’t fancy doing any kind of re-run; kind of smacks of the Irish EU referendum – keep voting til you give the “right” answer. But if someone else wants to run it go ahead.

        Overall, as far my subjective opinion goes, I’m in agreement with the voters’ verdict. There are a couple that surprised me with how well they did – Samantha Janus and Ulrika Jonsson – and there a few that I feel ought to have done better – Liz and Hazel, for instance. I’m disappointed that the Elsa de Vassoigne panel beaters failed to place in the top 30. But apart from that I’m in agreement – gungings like Jenny Hull, Vorders and Charlotte are all top notch and deserve to be where they are.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. supersarahm says:

    Bucket’s point about the Stapleton gunging is a very fair one, but I don’t think anyone’s arguing that we should take life so seriously as to actually re-run the vote. My suggestion was that we do a separate non-celeb vote; but I appreciate if no one can be bothered with the admin!
    I’d be interested to hear more about TG’s surprise regarding the Sam Janus gunging. It’s a top 3 pick for me. Undoubtedly one of the best looking woman ever to get gunged on tv. Good coverage. Great aftershot. The only thing I can see going against it is that it wasn’t actually on NHP but rather Comic Relief.
    (As a side note, I vividly recall the first time I saw the Janus gunging. It was on the Big Breakfast on the morning of Comic Relief. They were showing short clips of the pre-recorded elements of Comic Relief either side of the ad-breaks. There I was eating my cornflakes… only to see one of the best looking woman on tv appear in an NHP skit… starting to dream of a gunging but fearing that Michael Winner would be the recipient… and then delighted with the outcome. The very best thing about it was, in a pre pause / rewind tv era, I knew it was guaranteed that the scene would be repeated during the main evening Comic Relief broadcast. So I had no worry that this would become some holy grail lost forever, I was able to record the scene and watch over again.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • TG says:

      So why don’t I rate that gunging? Well firstly, I must be the only heterosexual British man who never caught the Samantha Janus craze. She’s attractive, of course, but not really my type, and never one of my pin-ups. Secondly, the amount of gunge used isn’t that much. Thirdly, it doesn’t have the same build up, anticipation and context as a gunging; it’s a scripted sketch, basically. And fourthly, I guess, I never saw it or knew of its existence at the time. I paid careful attention to Comic Relief for possible mess, but somehow missed this one. So for me there isn’t any nostalgia factor.

      Don’t get me wrong, it’s an ok scene, but NHP has a higher standard than ok. Plenty of people evidently disagree me with though, so fair enough.

      Liked by 1 person

      • yuck53 says:

        Both good points from the personal experience of both participants.

        I can’t actually remember if I saw this at the top but I agree with Super that Samantha is a wonderful candidate.

        But I can also easily see TG having problems because it’s a scripted skit, that makes it a lot harder to read the participants actually reactions because they’re acting and thus you feel like you may have been robbed of some truth.

        Since TG admits he frequently goes for the humiliation factor I can see how that might be a problem for the skit as narratively, despite the mess she gets in, Sam still ‘wins’.


  6. I never got around to watching and voting, but the nine-celebs-plus-Charlotte result comes as no surprise to me. I genuinely thought Charlotte would be number one though, since the context of the gunging is not only present, but I also suspect an influence on some of the writers here, consciously or otherwise.

    One I’m surprised didn’t crack the top 10, however, was the “Village Girl”. Maybe I just like the idea of putting two unsuspecting schmucks up for the vote and gunging the cute one though!


    • yuck53 says:

      Yeah, but people may not have been voting purely on the basis of what was present in the clip but what they knew of the context from other sources and the Nicola Stapleton gunging is one of the worthiest WAM story set up going.

      Nicola Stapleton was voted for by the audience of NHP over Lucinda Cowden, not because she herself had done anything wrong but because she played a soap character in EastEnders that the audience judged to have done a lot wrong. We love that WAM story set up and the fact the Nicola presents really well, is charming and quite nervous just makes for a hilarious and fun gunging.

      On top of that is the foaming tank which seems to have been rarely used on women but always looks beautiful somehow.

      All this results in one of the most brilliant gungings ever shown on television. It also probably adds to the disappointment that there’s no aftermath shots, you kind of don’t want it to end and certainly want to hear or see more from Nicola, great sport that is clearly is.



  7. y1232123y says:

    Does anyone remember crackerjack I. The 80s??Sent from Yahoo Ma


  8. Lordship says:

    It was mentioned in the countdown that there is extended footage of the second Anneka Rice gunging. Does anyone have a link to this clip (fake or not)?


↓ This is where you write something ↓

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s