ITV1 have announced plans for a brand new game-show that is set to revolutionise the light entertainment industry.
In an ingenious stripping-down of previous formats, Beat the Panel will feature all your favourite TV panels without the boring talent show bits. Instead, a "super-panel" of entertainment industry veterans like Bob Carolgees and Timmy Mallet will assess the performances of stalwart judging panels from Strictly Come Dancing, The X-Factor and other identikit telly juries.
ITV Executive Patricia Cack-Peddler said that Beat the Panel will change the face of Saturday primetime. "We think audiences are sick of popstar wannabes and Z-List celebrities desperately trying to salsa their way to a brief return to the spotlight," she said. "In our show, the panel of judges will listen to the inane burbling of the various contestant panels, and at the end, the panel with the highest score will win the chance to talk about themselves for a whole hour on ITV2, while all the other panels will be beaten to a pulp by a select 'revenge panel' made up of their embittered former contestants."
"The key word here is 'panel'," she added.
Competition is set to be fierce. In one of the nerve-jangling rounds, the judges will have to decide which panel has the best "Mr. Nasty" character. Simon Cowell, Craig Revel-Horwood and the absurd gay one with the beard from Dancing on Ice will each have a minute to perform a routine of shrugging, tutting and rolling their eyes in cynical despair. Extra points will be awarded for stage-managed audience provocation and the use of key phrases such as "I thought that was distinctly average" and "It was a bit like stag party karaoke".
Each panel will also have a hateful, menopausal witch figure who will be required to pepper their performances with shrieking and drunk, incomprehensible nonsense. Sharon Osborne is clear favourite to take the honours for the X-Factor team, but watch out for American Idol nut-job Paula Abdul who could provide an upset if the vodka tonics are strong enough. And Arlene Philips has been in scintillating flirting form, so don't discount her chances during the "Embarrassingly Inappropriate Remarks to Innocent Young Boys" round.
Much fancied in the coveted "Buffoon" category is Westlife manager and all-round sexually ambiguous weirdo Louis Walsh, though he faces stiff competition from Randy Jackson, Bruno Tonioli and the wonderfully smug Piers Morgan
Overseeing matters, there will be a panel of presenters who will josh awkwardly with the panel of judges and offer consoling words of encouragement to the panels of contestants. Ryan Seacrest and Bruce Forsyth have already signed up to the project, and Ant and Dec will probably join them provided they can shoe-horn in a public phone vote of some sort.