chapter  7
13 Pages

WINNER TAKES ALL: COMPETITION

ByGarry Whannel

Television has always offered a wide range of competition, from cricket to Come Dancing, from Match of the Day to Mastermind, from tennis to Treasure Hunt, from boxing to Blankety Blank. Fiske and Hartley1 argue that, despite the obvious differences between these diverse forms of competition, they also have notable similarities. They all involve the ritualization and evaluation of social behaviour and all draw on the appeal of exploiting and resolving uncertainty. Characteristically, we are placed in the position of an evaluator or judge, able to sit back and assess performance.