Nostalgic game show: Give Us a Clue



THE TELEVISION show made up of four words and four syllables. The clues on this quiz show would send contestants into a mind boggling mist of confusion & frustration!


A quick recap of the suspects and format


The original suspects were Michael Aspel (host) – the captain of the ladies team, Una Stubbs (Aunt Sally in Worzel Gummidge) and Lionel Blair (tap dancer with that huge smile) the captain of the men’s team. The teams were made complete with the rest of the contestants – guests from television and showbiz. The host would show a card with the title of a song, television programme, a book or a play to the contestant – they would then need to act out the title without saying a word. The outcome: finger waving, head shaking, bum wriggling, jumping, hopping, animal imitating contestants!


The contestants

The show always had interesting people from showbiz – let’s look at the ones that appeared in this 1981 episode:

Beryl Reid: Actress who appeared in the film The Killing of Sister George and won the BAFTA best actress award for Smiley’s People.

Sandra Dickinson: Actress whose early appearance was a television advert for Birds Eye beef burgers in 1970.

Lesley Judd: Dancer and former Blue Peter presenter.

Jon Pertwee: Actor famous for playing Doctor Who and Worzel Gummidge.

Peter Davison: Actor who who played the fifth Doctor Who.

Geoffrey Hayes: Appeared alongside Zippy, George and Bungle in long running children’s programme Rainbow.


And finally …

How would you do acting-out these titles?

The postman always rings twice

She’s a Latin from Manhattan

If I could talk to the animals

I want a girl just like the girl that married dear old dad

The secret life of an American Wife

If you have free time on your hands you know what to do … Give us a Clue whilst keeping your lips firmly sealed – relax and let your body do the talking … and don’t worry about looking like a complete idiot.



Give Us a Clue: 1979 – 1992


A nostalgic collection of stories featuring a fun and factual look back at British advertising, leisure and entertainment from the 70s & 80s are featured in the new hardback book, Section N Underpass. Get the rundown here: Enter the Underpass

The Give Us a Clue blog is based on the 1981 episode screened on ITV produced by Thames Television. Photos from YouTube courtesy of Antony Keetch.

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