Watch: Gogglebox: 10 Year Anniversary Special

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Gogglebox: 10 Year Anniversary Special (Channel 4, 9pm)

The formats that look awful on paper sometimes work out to be among the best and most original TV shows out there.

Take Gogglebox, for example – 10 years ago, when we learned that Channel 4 was launching a show in which viewers could watch people watching TV on TV, we never would have guessed we would be marking its anniversary a decade later.

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Its popularity has even seen it win a veritable sofaload of trophies – including two BAFTAs and six National Television Awards.

It’s also launched no end of celebrity or semi-celeb careers, and will forever be the programme that gifted the world Scarlett Moffatt.

Moffat, along with various other Gogglebox cast members who have made the leap into solo stardom, no longer takes part in the show lest she ends up seeing herself on telly and causing a sort of reality-threatening feedback loop (at least we assume that’s why), however there has also been, thanks to Channel 4’s fundraising Stand Up To Cancer programming, a celebrity spin-off of the show, with the likes of Shaun Ryder and Bez tucking in to a takeaway and some top telly.

Not only that but there has even been a kids’ version – Gogglesprogs – as well as countless international versions of the franchise.

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Even if it had not been so well received, it might have still lasted – after all, it is cheap to produce (rumours around the early series suggested that households were paid no more than a free takeaway, although more recently Channel 4 did confirm that households received £1,500 per month – and a takeaway – for the last series). However to have retained a prime-time slot for so long is admirable.

This look back at archive episodes features some old faces, such as Steph and Dom, Leon, June, and Sandra and Sandi, as well as current armchair critics Pete and Sophie, Mary and Giles, Jenny and Lee, and the Siddiquis, who have been part of the programme since it all started.

Part of the appeal of the show is the slice-of-life it affords us as we eavesdrop on living rooms around the country, and so this special highlights show also serves as a kind of retrospective of the events of the past 10 years as we watch people’s reactions to news and popular culture events as they unfold.

Whenever it is airing, Gogglebox has seen its armchair critics comment on everything from reality shows and movies on TV to the latest streaming blockbusters – and, of course, current affairs.

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Among the more memorable moments have of course been during the pandemic, and we see real people going through the varying stages of the lockdowns – something which will bring back memories for us all.

The Siddiquis, who have been part of the programme since it all startedThe Siddiquis, who have been part of the programme since it all started
The Siddiquis, who have been part of the programme since it all started

Then there has been the carousel of Prime Ministers coming and going, while Ed Balls proves that political types aren’t always delivering bad news by doing his memorable Gangnam Style routine on Strictly.

Talk about epoch-defining moments…