Back in the game

Daryl Somers was done with TV … un­til this new game show with a twist came around. By SIOB­HAN DUCK

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - TV Guide - - NEWS -

FUN­NILY enough, it was dur­ing ne­go­ti­a­tions about bring­ing back Hey Hey It’s Satur­day that Daryl Somers found him­self mes­merised by a com­pletely dif­fer­ent show.

You’re Back in the Room, which sees con­tes­tants com­pete for cash while un­der hyp­no­sis, is the first of sev­eral new for­mats Nine will be un­leash­ing this year.

World-renowned hypnotist Keith Barry – who plays the same role in the hugely suc­cess­ful Bri­tish ver­sion of the show – was signed up to take part.

And for Somers, it was the first show that has been able to tempt him out of his self-im­posed re­tire­ment from the small screen since he walked away from Danc­ing with the Stars.

The triple-Gold Lo­gie win­ner hasn’t ap­peared on prime time since the ill-fated Hey Hey re­boot in 2011.

“It was a gut re­ac­tion re­ally,” he tells TV Guide of his de­ci­sion to leap back into a host­ing role.

“It just felt right. I felt like this was a for­mat that would work for me and that au­di­ences would re­ally like.”

Al­though he was ini­tially scep­ti­cal about hyp­no­sis it­self, hav­ing never been put un­der any­one’s spell, Somers says his mind was made up when he watched Barry in ac­tion on the UK se­ries.

“I went away and watched a whole lot of episodes of the UK se­ries on YouTube and was re­ally im­pressed by what I saw,” he says.

“And it’s also a re­ally funny show. It’s not re­ally about the hyp­no­sis but about how he uses that to cre­ate these funny sce­nar­ios. It works re­ally well.”

Cap­ti­vated by Barry’s skill, and ex­cited by the pos­si­bil­i­ties You’re Back in the Room pre­sented to him as host, Somers signed on the dot­ted line and the rest, as they say, is his­tory.

“Al­though the show is pre-recorded, it still gives me a lot of free­dom to do what I like to do (ad-lib­bing) and bring my flavour to it,” he says.

“I know a lot of the crew were sur­prised that I didn’t use an au­tocue or an ear­piece.

“That’s just how I’ve al­ways worked. I did it on Hey Hey and then on Danc­ing too.”

Be­fore You’re Back in the Room came up, Somers says he’d started to be­lieve TV had lost some of the magic of the good old days be­cause of the pro­lif­er­a­tion of re­al­ity shows that now dom­i­nate the small screen.

He still con­sid­ers Gra­ham Kennedy one of his great­est in­spi­ra­tions be­cause of his abil­ity to cre­ate mem­o­rable TV mo­ments by han­dling any­thing that was thrown at him live on air.

Some could ar­gue Somers did the same him­self mar­shalling the mot­ley crew on Hey Hey for al­most 30 years.

“I have al­ways pre­ferred the spon­tane­ity of live TV and that sense of ‘any­thing can hap­pen’,” he says.

“That’s why I’ve pre­ferred to work on stage in more re­cent years. I love that feel­ing you get from per­form­ing for a live au­di­ence. There hasn’t been any­thing like that on TV for me un­til this show.”

YOU’RE BACK IN THE ROOM

NINE, SUN­DAY, 7PM

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.