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Insert Name Here

Insert Name Here is a British comedy panel game show presented by Sue Perkins. The programme made its debut on BBC Two on 4 January 2016. In each episode two teams of three compete to answer questions about famous people, past and present, who have just one thing in common: they share the same name.[1] The team captains are Josh Widdicombe and Richard Osman.[2]

Insert Name Here
Insert Name Here.png
GenreComedy panel game
Written byWill Ing
Paul Powell
Directed byGeraldine Dowd
Presented bySue Perkins
StarringJosh Widdicombe
Richard Osman
Theme music composerWill Slater
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series3
No. of episodes20 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)Paul McGettigan
Dan Gaster
Michael Mannes
Producer(s)Margaret Anne Docherty
Production location(s)Pinewood Studios
Editor(s)Jon Ellis
Rob Mansell
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)12 Yard Productions
Black Dog Television
DistributorITV Studios
Original networkBBC Two
Picture format16:9 (1080i HDTV)
Audio formatStereo
Original release4 January 2016 (2016-01-04) – present
External links
Official website



Insert Name Here had four pilots: one called "Britain's Favourite", recorded on the theme of Steves and due to be broadcast in February 2011, but pulled out of the broadcast schedule at short notice; one in July 2012 discussing Davids and called "And You Are..." (both of these were fronted by Miranda Hart);[3] one in March 2013 as "Name Droppers"; and one in April 2015 with its current title (both fronted by Sue Perkins).[4] On the second Hart-hosted pilot, a producer told The Sun: "the pilot went well but the bosses weren’t sure they had the format quite right. Now they have developed it, they are a lot happier. It seems a great fit for Sue. She's really popular and has the kind of quirky, eccentric side they want to make the show work."[5]

The first series went out on Monday nights[6] in the slot that the final series of Never Mind the Buzzcocks occupied.[7] The Times announced that Perkins's appointment as host made her the first female presenter of a mainstream British comedy TV panel show, a distinction that some commentators had previously assumed would belong to Sandi Toksvig when she began hosting QI later the same year.[8] However, the online column Weaver's Week argued that Sue Barker, Jo Brand, and Gabby Logan had all beaten Perkins to the post, with A Question of Sport, Jo Brand's Hot Potatoes, and I Love My Country, respectively.[9]

A name is picked before the show, and the aim of the game is to find out the best possessor of that name. This may be somebody either using that name or having been born with that name or its deviants – for example, Frank discussions would also address Francises, Frankies and Fannys – and the name is divulged at the start of the show.[10]

Round 1Edit

Four owners of that name are listed as characteristics (for example, Secret Frank). Four facts are revealed about said owner, and then free discussion takes place. After a few minutes, Sue asks a question about the owner and whoever's guess is closest gets that owner. Three of the owners are discussed in this way.[10]

Round 2Edit

The second round involves three owners being laid out and then a related question asked. Whoever gets that question right gets that owner, while whoever doesn't gets a bonus – a comparatively useless owner. Three sets of three are discussed in this way.[10]

Round 3Edit

This round is on the buzzer, and a half-finished question is asked. Teams are asked to finish the question. Three of these are asked. Afterwards, the winners are the team with the most owners; the winning team captain gets the privilege of declaring who they think is the best owner. In addition, booby prizes are awarded to both teams.[10]


The coloured backgrounds denote the result of each of the series:

     – indicates Josh's team won the series.
     – indicates Richard's team won the series.
     – indicates the series ended in a draw.


Series Start date End date Episodes Names covered
1 4 January 2016 8 February 2016 6
2 9 January 2017 6 February 2017 5
3 20 November 2017[11] 22 January 2018 7


Date Entitle
21 December 2016 Christmas Special 2016
21 December 2017 Christmas Special 2017[11]

Guest appearancesEdit

Kate Williams has made eleven guest appearances making her the most frequent guest on the programme.

The following have all appeared multiple times as one of the guest panelists on the show (up to and including series 3, episode 8):


Tim Dowling of The Guardian noted the show's "breezy contempt for its own formalities", saying that the show echoed 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown in that respect, though stated that "the latter has the distinct advantage of a well-understood and much-loved set of actual rules. Here, there was nothing established to undermine, unless it was the very notion of the panel show". He summarised by calling the show "an amiable enough half hour" and noted that "no one will ever accuse Insert Name Here of taking itself too seriously".[12]

The Times' Alex Hardy was more positive, saying that while Sandi Toksvig hugged each of her guests before hosting episodes of The News Quiz, "in the best possible way, this feels like a show where everyone has been hugged.[8] It’s partly that the concept is so loose that the conversation can spin off anywhere. … It's partly that the chemistry really worked, with everyone contributing intelligently and amusingly. It is funny and it is (fairly) clever, which is pretty close to the panel-show holy grail."[8]

International broadcastersEdit

Internationally, the series premiered in Australia on BBC UKTV on 8 November 2016.[13]


  1. ^ "BBC Two Commissions Insert Name Here". BBC Media Centre. Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  2. ^ "Griff's Great Britain, Silent Witness and Immortal Egypt with Joann Fletcher...tonight's TV highlights". Herts & Essex Observer.
  3. ^ "BBC re-pilots panel show hosted by Miranda Hart".
  4. ^ "Sue Perkins to film BBC panel show pilot Insert Name Here".
  5. ^ "Sue Perkins To Front News BBC Show After 'Top Gear' Denial?". Huffington Post.
  6. ^ "News". Debi Allen Associates.
  7. ^ "BBC axes Never Mind the Buzzcocks after 20 years". The Guardian.
  8. ^ a b c Hardy, Alex (5 January 2016). "TV review: When Ant & Dec Met the Prince". The Times (subscription required). Retrieved 5 January 2016. Sandi Toksvig, on her recent Desert Island Discs, revealed that before each recording of The News Quiz, she gives each panellist a hug — all part of making the show more friendly. She was due to become the first female host of a mainstream comedy TV panel show, when she takes over the reins of QI later this year, but Sue Perkins last night pipped her to it on Insert Name Here. In the best possible way, this feels like a show where everyone has been hugged. It’s partly that the concept is so loose that the conversation can spin off anywhere (it’s about a different moniker every week, so last night’s “Frank” episode covered everything from Drake to Lampard). It’s partly that the chemistry really worked, with everyone contributing intelligently and amusingly. It is funny and it is (fairly) clever, which is pretty close to the panel-show holy grail.
  9. ^ "Weaver's Week 2016-02-21".
  10. ^ a b c d "Episode One". Insert Name Here. Series 1. Episode 1. BBC Online. 4 January 2016. BBC Two.
  11. ^ a b Guide, British Comedy (10 October 2017). "Insert Name Here to return for third series".
  12. ^ Dowling, Tim (5 January 2016). "Silent Witness review – this pathology procedural has held up remarkably well". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
  13. ^ Purcell, Charles (3 November 2016). "New This Week (Nov 7): Vampire Diaries, Lucifer, Mars, World Cup, Wallabies and live sport". The Green Room. Archived from the original on 4 November 2016. Retrieved 4 November 2016.

External linksEdit