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Who Wants to be a Millionare - Case closed?

(31 Posts)
Furball Tue 22-Apr-03 08:59:27

Anyone see this last night? I know we've been given the evidence in biased form (this was the chap that interview Michael Jackson after all!) but I think the conclusion is pretty clear cut.

Guilty alround is my judgement - whats yours?

Meanmum Tue 22-Apr-03 09:10:59

I saw it and you're right the documentary (if you can call it that) was very biased. Seeing the show certainly makes you believe they are guilty, however, I wonder why the jury took so long to actually decide the outcome of the case and why did the judge end up saying he would accept a majority decision as opposed to unanimous decision from the jury? Makes me wonder what information we weren't given was. I'm still undecided but think it will be interesting to see whether they appeal or not.

BBC News were interviewing the Major this morning but I've had to rush off to work so didn't get to see what he had to say. Anyone see this and what did he say.

whymummy Tue 22-Apr-03 09:17:11

very guilty,the wife put her foot in big time with the coughing and the major`s performance was pretty obvious as well

emsiewill Tue 22-Apr-03 09:50:19

Although I'm fairly convinced that they were guilty, I think ITV were having a laugh saying that last nights programme would "give you the chance to make your own mind up" (or however they put it). Fair enough, they won, and so have the right to say whatever they want, but that was certainly not a programme that gave both sides of the story (not that I thought it would be), and it was almost laughable the way they made all the coughs so much louder than they really would have been.
Heard Tecwen Wittock on the radio last night, and his defence did sound pretty weak - he said that the "cough-NO" that we heard after the "Berlin" question was only whispered, so how could the major have heard it? But what he didn't explain was why he did it in the first place.
The one question it raised in my mind was how do these people get on the programme over and over? Did anyone read the article in Saturday's Guardian by Jon Ronson, where he described them using "Computer" voices and calling 1,000s of times. It seems that to get on you have to spend an awful lot of money (or be very lucky). These people have even made their own "fastest fingers first" machines to practice on at home. Crazy!

Moomin Tue 22-Apr-03 10:41:23

I saw the interview with the pair this morning and his argument was still very weak. His biggest defence was that neither the court nor the programme could exactly replicate the environment and positions that he and Chris Tarrant were in; the major said he hadn't heard the coughs and because CT has admitted he hadn't heard them either, this was his defence. However, CT also said that he is so focused during the programme that he often doesn't notice a lot anyway. That's a whole different ball game to listening out for a sound. One other contestent that clocked the major was sitting the other side of the circle to Tecwyn thingybob and he heard it.

I think the biggest teller is the major's general lack of knowledge about popular culture. The other big money winners have always been very intelligent, well-read, etc but also have a good grasp of pop culture and use their lifelines better. His whole approach to questions he had no clue over gave him away, I think.

sobernow Tue 22-Apr-03 11:01:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bugsy Tue 22-Apr-03 11:03:39

Programme cheered me up no end last night. The question about the googol completely swung it for me. Major Clueless had absolutely no idea what any of those things were, none whatsover. He originally thought it was a nanogigglygo (or whatever) and then after all those coughs completely changed his mind, even though he had never even heard of a googol and risked vast amounts of money on it!
Guilty, guilty, guilty (and a bit blooming thick too).

Crunchie Tue 22-Apr-03 11:12:50

Emsiewell, that's interesting if on teh radio Tecwen Wittock said teh 'cough-no' was only whispered, as on GMTV this morning he maintained it wasn't him, and there was no 'proof' that the 'no' was him!!

I thought that although the documentary was biased, it did look quite conclusive. All the staff seemed to have worries before he even won, and at least 2 of the other potentail contestants thought he was cheating. One picked out the coughs by Tecwen by the £250,000 question, and watched him for the remainder of the show.

The funny thing was that if they had stopped around £125,000 nothing would have been done, I think it was his greed (and trying to prove something to his wife) made him continue. Although we don't know what they argued about in their dressing rooms afterwards, a usual person after winning £1,000,000 will not normally have a row!!

Metrobaby Tue 22-Apr-03 11:14:43

With such a large jackpot to be won I guess it was inevitable one day that someone would cheat !

I wonder whether if they had stopped earlier in the game whether they would have been found out at all.

The wife must be must be even more livid! Feel sorry for their kids - they must be getting some stick at school

Tinker Tue 22-Apr-03 11:16:22

Thought it was hilarious. I think his own greed blew it. If he'd stuck at 125k, as was said, no-one would have queried it too much.

Also, he was just so thick, he showed no logic or intelligence when choosing his answers, couldn't given any reasons as to why he was picking or rejetcting answers.

Her cough and the looks to Tecwen were very revealing.

What a weird lot these quiz obsessives are?

Bobbins Tue 22-Apr-03 11:21:38

I think the almost instantaneous reactions to the coughs was the most revealing aspect. Obviously they weren't that loud in reality, but the Major was listening out for any audible sign

He was such a bad actor.

I think the wife was angry and couldn't believe that he carried on until the end.

Greedy, silly biunch of people if you ask me. it made great telly though.

Marcia Tue 22-Apr-03 11:30:33

I agree with Tinker!

The guy was obviously not clever enough to answer the question without help. In the first day he needed 2 LifeLines to answer the "basic-to-medium-level" questions. In the second day there was no logic in his choices at all. Who would gamble (and risk to lose) 468k chosing an answer that "you've never heard before"?

Marcia Tue 22-Apr-03 11:55:52

I agree with Tinker!

The guy was obviously not clever enough to answer the question without help. In the first day he needed 2 LifeLines to answer the "basic-to-medium-level" questions. In the second day there was no logic in his choices at all. Who would gamble (and risk to lose) 468k chosing an answer that "you've never heard before"?

Gumdrop Tue 22-Apr-03 13:01:28

What is really driving me nuts about this whole thing is that they are all on TV / in newspapers etc (presumably getting paid) still claiming to be innocent when a jury in a criminal trial found "beyond reasonable doubt" that they were guilty.

I would also be interested to see if the judge would be so lenient on someone trying to defraud social security to the tune of £10,000 let alone £1 million. Oh yes, but the major is such a nice middle class boy, his crime has to be a "school boy prank". So, so cross about this.

SoupDragon Tue 22-Apr-03 13:10:47

It was really quite incredible - the Major was so obviously clueless about what the correct answers were! Especially the Craig Davis one - no one would risk that money on someone he'd "never heard of"! I gave up watching soon after that. They were so clearly guilty.

Did they show any bits without the coughs enhanced to show whether it really was as obvious as they made out?

SueW Tue 22-Apr-03 16:04:25

I was fascinated by the whole thing.

I noted at the end they are still considering whether to appeal - maybe the possibility that their sentence could be increased is putting them off?

quackers Tue 22-Apr-03 16:44:58

There was no hope for this bloke from the start! Imagine having a wife like that!! Poor kids!! How can they say they are innocent? Even the most unbiased of courts could not say this guy was innocent. His own words find him guilty. He eliminated the right answer on two occasions and did a u-turn after several coughs. I think I expected the odd cough in this program, but it was so obvious what was going on. Even two of the contestants refused to clap because of what they saw. They had nothing to gain by saying what they saw, in fact one guy did go on to be a millionaire.

breeze Tue 22-Apr-03 17:49:26

I watched with my DH, and we thought it was very funny, couldn't believe that they were trying to defend themselves. On ITV2 after this programme they showed the whole programme in full as what would of gone out on telly. I only watched the first half and without the microphones enchancing the sounds, you could still here the coughs very clearly.
What an evil looking women she was, you could tell who wore the trousers in that house.
I don't know who's cough was more pathetic that guy or his wife.

gosh2 Wed 23-Apr-03 17:01:36

Gumdrop don't worry, don't get angry, he is losing his job from the army.
Totally agree that the judge wouldn't have been so sparing had they been defrauding Soc Security.

Yes wife is a total nightmare, she wears the white leggings in that household. (as worn on GMTV last week

The most cringeing programme I have watched for a long time. Totally hillarious, for once I watched something that made me think the TV licence is worth the money.

Maybe their marriage will crumble under the pressure - then he may come clean and say she put him up to it?

WideWebWitch Wed 23-Apr-03 17:13:25

He really was dim, wasn't he? And she was sooo obvious as was the coughing. I just thought they were obviously completely stupid since they probably would have got away with it if they'd stuck at £125k. These quiz obsessives are indeed a weird lot Tinker - if I understood correctly, most of them ring in about 300 times to get on the programme and then they've still got to get through fastest finger first thing and even then they might not win much. Madness.

Dahlia Wed 23-Apr-03 17:25:33

Stone Him! Stone Him!
And apparently he's a member of MENSA. What a total and utter thickie. I agree with Gumdrop, I got really angry watching them the next morning on BBC vehemently denying it all. I hope they aren't getting paid for all these interviews, the scummy cheats.

gosh2 Wed 23-Apr-03 17:28:24

I dont know if you can get paid for interviews. I thought that after you were found guilty and they were given a prison sentence, suspended. I am pretty sure you cannot make a penny from it.

Bloomin' hope they can't anyhow. That would be ridiculous, that would encourage people to commit a similar fraud, and sell their story for money.

Croppy Wed 23-Apr-03 17:36:05

I think they are exploring ways of potentially getting around the ban on convicted criminals profiting from their crimes but I wouldn't have thought it was easy. Sorry to be picky gosh2 but it was on ITV so it wasn't paid for by your licence money.

gosh2 Wed 23-Apr-03 17:39:35

HA! Now that makes me wonder once again, why am I paying that TV licence!

He has lost his job though, would you want her looking after your kids?? they lose their rented home, so it doesn't look good for them.

Still hillarious though.

Tinker Wed 23-Apr-03 18:53:53

Can't make this into a link but it was quite amusing: \link,3605,938645,00.html\Guardian story{}

Reckon he must have borrowed the MENSA badge.

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