The Gadget Show is back -- how will techtastic twosome Jason and Polly face up to the competition from Sky's rival Gadget Geeks?
Richard TrenholmFormer Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
The Gadget Show is back next month -- and it's going on the road. Half the presenters are jettisoned in a new format that sees Jason Bradbury and Pollyanna Woodward launch The Gadget Show World Tour. But how will the techtastic twosome face up to the competition from new rival Gadget Geeks?
Channel 5's Gadget Show has been revamped so that each week Jason and Polly travel to a new destination such as Tokyo, Dubai or Silicon Valley to test consumer kit like camcorders, 3D TVs and new phones. Along the way they fire up a smörgåsbord of mind-bending gizmos, including water-blasting jetpacks, mind-controlled skateboards, and more robots than you can shake a stick at. They also engage in some skydiving, shooting at watches, and a spot of cosplay -- all while saying "gadge" a lot, I imagine.
I checked out the highlights of the first episodes at a screening in London today, where
-- with grim inevitability -- no-one could get the telly to work. But
the combined might of Gadget Show expertise soon got things rolling, and it's immediately clear that Jason and Polly are having
loads of fun jet-setting around and checking out technology.
There's no space in the suitcase though for longtime presenters Suzi
Perry, Ortis Deley, or CNET columnist, podcast guest and all-round
good egg Jon Bentley.
They've been ditched in favour of the expanded travel budget required for the new format, which takes off some time in April.
The refreshed format marks the first time The Gadget Show has been on air since the debut of Sky's Gadget Geeks. One series in, Gadget Geeks mixes Top Gear-style challenges and consumer advice from comedian and programmer Tom Scott, epic beard Charles Yarnold, and alpha geek Colin Furze -- like MacGyver in a tie and untucked shirt -- ably supported by technology journalist Emma Barnett and our very own Ian Morris and Rory Reid.
Ian and Rory are familiar faces and voices to CNET readers and podcast listeners, as long-standing former residents of CNET Towers. It's good to see the lads on telly -- although we don't envy the poor soul that has to take on that make-up job -- but how do they shape up against the longstanding and hugely-popular Gadget Show?
Are you excited to hit the road with Jason and Polly when The Gadget Show returns? Will you miss Ortis, Suzi and Jon? Or have Rory, Ian and Emma filled your televisual gadget hole? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.