Eggheads (TV series)

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Eggheads titles.jpg
GenreGame show
Presented by
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series15 (Regular)
6 (Celebrity Specials)
No. of episodes1333 (Regular)
(as of 7 November 2014)
56 (Celebrity Specials)
(as of 20 December 2013)
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)
DistributorITV Studios
Original channel
Picture format16:9
Original run10 November 2003 (2003-11-10) – present
Related shows
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Eggheads titles.jpg
GenreGame show
Presented by
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series15 (Regular)
6 (Celebrity Specials)
No. of episodes1333 (Regular)
(as of 7 November 2014)
56 (Celebrity Specials)
(as of 20 December 2013)
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)
DistributorITV Studios
Original channel
Picture format16:9
Original run10 November 2003 (2003-11-10) – present
Related shows

Eggheads is a BBC quiz show which pits a team of five "Eggheads" (made up from eight highly regarded quiz and game show champions, rotating each episode) against a series of teams of five "challengers" who in each episode attempt to beat the Eggheads through a series of rounds.

The program was first broadcast in 2003, and co-presented by Dermot Murnaghan and Jeremy Vine. For the 2008 series, Vine was brought in to present on the nights when Murnaghan was hosting the spinoff series Are You an Egghead?. This happened again from October 2009 while Murnaghan presented the second series of the spinoff show.[1] Since the spin-off show finished, Vine has continued to host the series. Episodes generally air on weekdays. In 2014, Vine also presented another Egghead spinoff series Revenge of the Egghead.



The show is played in five rounds: the first four are each on a specific category whilst the final round is a general knowledge round. In each of these first four rounds, the Challengers are given a category and must choose a member of their own team to play and an Egghead against whom they wish to compete. The players for that round then leave the studio to go into the "question room" outside (which in 2009, was reported by the Daily Telegraph actually to be a pair of wooden benches behind a curtain). The challenger is given the choice of going first or second, and both players are then asked in turn three questions each, which have multiple choice answers. If after these three questions there is no winner, the round then goes into sudden death with each question now having no possible answers given.

The player who wins each round is then eligible to play in the final round whilst the losing players have to sit in their respective "question rooms" and are not allowed to participate in the final general knowledge round.

The general knowledge round is then played in exactly the same format as the head-to-head rounds, and now gives the challengers the opportunity to win the prize money. If the Eggheads win the final round, the prize money increases by a "rollover" system with another £1,000 added to the prize each day.


There are nine possible subjects in the head-to-head rounds: Arts & Books, Film & Television, Food & Drink, Geography, History, Music, Politics, Science, and Sport. Music and Film & Television were introduced in Autumn 2008 through a split of the Entertainment category. Subjects can appear in any order.


The quiz champions who compete on the show as the eponymous "Eggheads" are:

Eggheads team[edit]

In the first eight series, the team consisted of only five Eggheads - Chris Hughes, Daphne Fowler, CJ De Mooi, Kevin Ashman and Judith Keppel - who appeared in every episode and did not rotate. In May 2008, auditions began for a sixth person to join the Eggheads team.[1][3][4] These auditions were developed into a spin-off show, Are You an Egghead?, presented by Dermot Murnaghan. This began airing on BBC2 on 20 October 2008.[5] On 2 December 2008, Barry Simmons, who had once been a contestant on the regular show, won the Are You an Egghead? final and became the sixth Egghead. He made his first appearance on the team on the regular show the same day. Since the addition of Simmons as an Egghead, the Eggheads team has operated on a rotating basis, still featuring five Eggheads (out of the six, seven or eight) per show.

Pat Gibson won the second series of Are You an Egghead? and became the seventh Egghead to join the team, as of 25 November 2009. His first appearance as an Egghead was on the Celebrity Eggheads show on 7 December 2009.

Dave Rainford made his debut on 27 September 2012, replacing CJ De Mooi. He was previously seen on Are You an Egghead? in both series. In Series 1 he was beaten in the semi-finals by Barry and, in Series 2, he was beaten in the quarter-finals by David Edwards.

Daphne Fowler retired from the show in 2014, and at the start of Series 15, CJ De Mooi returned, after having been absent from the show for two years. The ninth Egghead, Lisa Thiel, joined the show for her first broadcast on 3 October 2014. Lisa had appeared as a contestant on Revenge of the Egghead earlier in 2014.

Teams who have defeated the Eggheads[edit]

On 6 November 2014, for the 120th time in 1332 episodes, the Eggheads were defeated by Cave Aged who won the prize fund of £7,000.[6] The BBC have now paid out a total of £1,332,000 in prize money.

The highest amount any team has won to beat the Eggheads is £75,000 in Series 8, Episode 14, by Beer Today, Gone Tomorrow.[7]

Team nameEpisodePrize moneyCumulative (at end of each Series)Notes
Unicorn InnSeries 1, Episode 13£13,000
Folically ChallengedSeries 1, Episode 15£2,000
Unlikely LadsSeries 1, Episode 21£6,000£21,000
Streatham MassiveSeries 2, Episode 10£19,000
SpaghettiSeries 2, Episode 30£19,000£60,000
The Rotor HeadsSeries 3, Episode 21£21,000£81,000
DensaSeries 4, Episode 11£20,000
Wapping Black SheepSeries 4, Episode 14£3,000£104,000
Radio Ga GaSeries 5, Episode 6£17,000£121,000
Second ClassSeries 6, Episode 3£37,000
Mancunian CandidatesSeries 6, Episode 10£7,000
Russell's RaidersSeries 6, Episode 14£4,000£169,000
West YorkiesSeries 7, Episode 18£29,000
Seville ServantsSeries 7, Episode 19£1,000£199,000#1 Eggheads lose twice in a row
Beer today, Gone tomorrowSeries 8, Episode 14£75,000Biggest win on the show so far
Preston QuizmastersSeries 8, Episode 17£3,000
Museum of London/Museum in Docklands teamSeries 8, Episode 50£33,000
TaxidermistsSeries 8, Episode 51£1,000#2 Eggheads lose twice in a row
Blue VibeSeries 8, Episode 63£12,000
Beer and SkittlesSeries 8, Episode 68£5,000£328,000
Weakly PlayersSeries 9, Episode 15£27,000
Sean and the SheepSeries 9, Episode 35£20,000
Tap HeadsSeries 9, Episode 48£13,000
The Rat PackSeries 9, Episode 54£5,000Eggheads lose to a single opponent for the first time
Lads Wot LunchSeries 9, Episode 65£12,000
South Wales WarriorsSeries 9, Episode 70£5,000
Loser's CornerSeries 9, Episode 76£6,000
Meet your WaterlooSeries 9, Episode 83£7,000#2 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
Flexi FunkstersSeries 9, Episode 99£16,000#3 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
Cubbington PlayersSeries 9, Episode 112£13,000
Act OneSeries 9, Episode 120£8,000Final team to play (and defeat) the original set of 5 Eggheads
Bere HeadsSeries 9, Episode 145£25,000
The Abbey RevellersSeries 9, Episode 146£1,000#3 Eggheads lose twice in a row
The Bald & The BeautifulSeries 9, Episode 152£6,000
Eclectic MixSeries 9, Episode 159£7,000£499,000
The Oxford ImpsSeries 10, Episode 2£3,000
Chummie BrummiesSeries 10, Episode 31£29,000
One Sense LessSeries 10, Episode 54£23,000Team made up of profoundly deaf contestants
The Midweek MaraudersSeries 10, Episode 64£10,000
Beached BoysSeries 10, Episode 66£2,000
Sally WarboysSeries 10, Episode 69£3,000
The Hanging GaleSeries 10, Episode 82£13,000
The CartoonistsSeries 10, Episode 91£9,000First team with all five challengers to win the final round against single Egghead (Kevin)
Insight RadioSeries 10, Episode 92£1,000#4 Eggheads lose twice in a row and #4 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
Ocean's FiveSeries 10, Episode 93£1,000#1 Eggheads lose three times in a row
Bognor Regis + 2Series 10, Episode 94£1,000#1 Eggheads lose four times in a row
The EggitorsSeries 10, Episode 98£4,000
Pembroke GlobetrottersSeries 10, Episode 115£17,000
PRS PlusSeries 10, Episode 121£6,000£621,000
The Wise OwlsSeries 11, Episode 3£37,000The team donated their winnings to the Sussex Wildlife Trust[8]
Work I.T. OutSeries 11, Episode 5£2,000
ShabbaSeries 11, Episode 35£30,000#5 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
The Black & White StripesSeries 11, Episode 52£17,000
Loiners by ProxySeries 11, Episode 57£5,000
The Middleton MoonrakersSeries 11, Episode 58£1,000#7 Eggheads lose twice in a row
Scrum 5Series 11, Episode 72£14,000
Comedy of ErrorsSeries 11, Episode 75£3,000#6 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
Glamorgan PoppiesSeries 11, Episode 86£11,000
The Apple TurnoversSeries 11, Episode 93£7,000
Get It With LettersSeries 11, Episode 122£29,000
ChessboxersSeries 11, Episode 124£2,000
The Flying DoctorsSeries 11, Episode 130£6,000#7 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
Lancashire HotpotsSeries 11, Episode 141£11,000#8 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
Bar 5Series 11, Episode 157£16,000£812,000
Living by NumbersSeries 12, Episode 6£9,000
Culture VulturesSeries 12, Episode 24£18,000
Who Cares WinsSeries 12, Episode 38£14,000
The Internal MarketeersSeries 12, Episode 63£25,000
Chad AcadSeries 12, Episode 66£3,000
Cornish MonkeysSeries 12, Episode 72£6,000Team donate money to Wild Futures, primate welfare and conservation charity
Millennium MarvelsSeries 12, Episode 84£12,000
Loose ConnectionSeries 12, Episode 85£1,000#8 Eggheads lose twice in a row
She Who Must Be ObeyedSeries 12, Episode 91£6,000
The TramlinesSeries 12, Episode 96£5,000One team member, Max Thomson, killed himself two days after this episode aired
The Lions' DenSeries 12, Episode 97£1,000#9 Eggheads lose twice in a row
5 A DaySeries 12, Episode 124£27,000
Blackpool RockersSeries 12, Episode 141£17,000
The Five MarketeersSeries 12, Episode 145£4,000#9 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
The BrocketeersSeries 12, Episode 149£4,000£964,000
The Royal HarmonicsSeries 13, Episode 12£23,000
DobbinSeries 13, Episode 19£7,000
Shelford 5Series 13, Episode 22£3,000
The WonderyearsSeries 13, Episode 30£8,000Over £1,000,000 has now been paid out in prize money since show first started
Phoenix NightsSeries 13, Episode 37£7,000
The Bell BoysSeries 13, Episode 38£1,000#10 Eggheads lose twice in a row
A Tale of Two FamiliesSeries 13, Episode 41£3,000
Bucks QuizSeries 13, Episode 44£3,000
The Melting PotSeries 13, Episode 47£3,000
Lightning Can Strike TwiceSeries 13, Episode 53£6,000#10 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
The Family ConnectionSeries 13, Episode 65£12,000
Dad's ArmySeries 13, Episode 83£18,000#11 Eggheads lose to a single opponent
The Hole in the Wall GangSeries 13, Episode 85£2,000
UNOSSeries 13, Episode 89£4,000
The Quad RunnersSeries 13, Episode 118£29,000#12 Eggheads lose to a single opponent.
Handel with CareSeries 13, Episode 120£2,000Team donated winnings to Southampton Choral Society.
Team ScotiaSeries 13, Episode 136£16,000£1,111,000
Two and a Half TandemsSeries 14, Episode 22£26,000Team donated winnings to Life Cycle UK.
Bright SparksSeries 14, Episode 33£11,000
StreetwiseSeries 14, Episode 49£16,000
The Business MenSeries 14, Episode 90£41,0002nd highest amount won by a challenging team. #13 Eggheads lose to a single opponent. 100th team to defeat the Eggheads.
The Crooked SpiresSeries 14, Episode 95£5,000
The ClevelandersSeries 14, Episode 106£11,000
Beer Run QuizzersSeries 14, Episode 108£2,000
Doctors' NotesSeries 14, Episode 113£5,000
Business BellesSeries 14, Episode 119£6,000
No DirectionSeries 14, Episode 130£11,000#14 Eggheads lose to a single opponent.
Neither Big Nor CleverSeries 14, Episode 134£4,000
The Sensational Alex Fairley BandSeries 14, Episode 136£2,000#1 Eggheads get first 2 questions wrong in the final round.
Rambling BadgersSeries 14, Episode 139£3,000£1,254,000
Green GiantsSeries 15, Episode 12£13,000#2 All five challengers win the final round against a single Egghead (Judith)
The AmnesiacsSeries 15, Episode 17£5,000
The Hound DogsSeries 15, Episode 20£3,000
Cardigan CarnageSeries 15, Episode 22£2,000
The SoroptimistsSeries 15, Episode 31£9,000Winnings donated to various local, national & international charities.
Collegiate QuizzersSeries 15, Episode 44£13,000
StumpedSeries 15, Episode 53£9,000
Burns Baby BurnsSeries 15, Episode 55£2,000
Meat BingoSeries 15, Episode 69£14,000
Team 42Series 15, Episode 70£1,000#11 Eggheads lose twice in a row
Cave AgedSeries 15, Episode 77£7,000£1,332,000

Revenge of the Egghead[edit]

On 24 February 2014, a new spin-off series of Eggheads was launched called Revenge of the Egghead. It was presented by Jeremy Vine and saw the return of CJ de Mooi, who left Eggheads in 2012. In each episode, de Mooi faced a team of five contestants hoping to win thousands of pounds. The series ran for a 6-week period, between 24 February and 4 April 2014.

Main game[edit]

Each contestant, in turn, is asked a general knowledge question. If their answer is right, £200 is added to the prize fund but if their answer is wrong and de Mooi knows their answer is wrong, he presses a red button in front of him to answer the same question. If he gets it wrong and the contestant gets it right, an additional £100 is added to the prize fund. If he gets it right, the contestant is asked a multiple-choice question by de Mooi. If they get it right, gameplay continues as normal but if they get it wrong, they lose one of their two lives. If a contestant loses both of their lives, they are out of the game. When time runs out, the surviving players move on to the final round, along with the total number of lives remaining for all players, for a chance to win an equal share of the prize fund.

Final round[edit]

The final round starts out with de Mooi answering ten general knowledge questions. The number of questions he gets right becomes the target that the team has to beat. The team can confer on every question. Every wrong answer means that the team loses one of their lives and if they lose all of their lives, they leave with nothing but if they beat the target, they win an equal share of the prize fund.

Celebrity Eggheads[edit]

On 15 December 2008, a special edition of Eggheads began, airing five shows of Celebrity Eggheads, ending on 19 December 2008 and presented by Dermot Murnaghan.

On 7 December 2009, 10 more editions of Celebrity Eggheads began. These were also the first shows to feature Pat Gibson, the seventh Egghead. The first nine episodes aired on consecutive weekdays, with the tenth episode airing in March 2010.

From 13 December 2010, 10 Celebrity Eggheads episodes were aired for a third series.

Then, from 12 to 23 December 2011, including a Sunday show on 18 December, the format returned for a fourth series.

From 10 to 21 December 2012, a further ten episodes aired.[9]

From 9 December 2013, a further 10 episodes were scheduled.


SeriesStart dateEnd dateEpisodesHostEggheadsLandmark
110 Nov 200319 Dec 20033030DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith
26 Sept 200416 Nov 20043060DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith
323 May 20057 Nov 20053090DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith
48 Nov 200512 Dec 200525115DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith100th episode on 22 Nov 2005
510 April 20066 June 200640155DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith
625 Sept 20065 March 200725180DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith
76 March 200710 Sept 200780260DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith250th episode on 27 August 2007
811 Sept 200728 February 200880340DermotChris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin and Judith
929 Feb 200823 March 2009160500Dermot Episodes 1–80
Jeremy (Ep's 81–160)
Chris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin, Judith and BarryBarry's debut on 2 December 2008
500th episode on 23 March 2009
1024 March 200926 Feb 2010155655Dermot Episodes 1–75
Jeremy (Ep's 76–155)
Chris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin, Judith and Barry600th episode on 11 Nov 2009
111 March 20106 April 2011160815Dermot Episodes 1–80
Jeremy (Ep's 81–160)
Chris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin, Judith, Barry and PatPat's debut on 1 March 2010
750th episode on 26 October 2010
127 April 201113 April 2012160975Dermot Episodes 1–80
Jeremy (Ep's 81–160)
Chris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin, Judith, Barry and Pat
1316 April 201214 March 20131401115Dermot Episodes 1–60
(Episodes 61–140)
Chris, Daphne, CJ, Kevin, Judith, Barry, Pat and Dave1,000th episode on 18 May 2012
CJ's final episode on 31 Aug 2012
Dave's debut on 27 Sept 2012
149 April 201327 May 20141401255Dermot Episodes 1–60
Jeremy (Ep's 61–140)
Chris, Daphne, Kevin, Judith, Barry, Pat and Dave1,250th episode on 20 May 2014
Daphne's final episode on 27 May 2014
1528 May 2014TBA1001355Dermot Episodes 1–50
Jeremy (Ep's 51–100)
Chris, CJ, Kevin, Judith, Barry, Pat, Dave and LisaCJ's return on 28 May 2014
Lisa's debut on 3 Oct 2014


External links[edit]