Tag Archives: grand designs

Can’t drink to that pt: Grand Designs

I have graduated from “Homes under the hammer” and am now watching the slightly higher-brow “Grand Designs” vigorously. Obviously this requires some form of drinking game. After watching some 50 episodes of the show, some pretty obvious rules start to emerge:

Take a sip every time Kevin rings a doorbell and greets the owners and act like they’ve just met, but the camera team is clearly already inside.

Take a sip for every giant window that the house has.

Take a sip for double/triple glazing.

Take a sip for solar panels.

Take a sip when Kevin McCloud speaks in French or Italian.

Take a sip when someone goes over budget because “a house like this needs high-spec furniture and fittings”.

Take a sip when Kevin “helps out”.

Take a sip if the clients go 10 % over budget.

Take a sip every time Kevin says “labour of love”, “marvellous!” or “good lord!”.

 

Take two sips if the client is project managing the build themselves.

– Take another sip if they have no previous building experience.

Take two sips if the neighbours are unhappy about the build.

Take two sips if Kevin indirectly insults the clients, like “some people might say it’s ridiculous”.

Take two sips if the clients go 20 % over budget.

Take two sips if the clients are planning to spend all of their money to half-finish the build and then re-mortgage the build to get the money to finish it.

 

Take three sips every time someone ends up pregnant before the build is complete.

Take three sips if the clients have to import material from a different country to build.

Take three sips if it starts raining at a very inconvenient time, like before the roof is isolated.

Take three sips if the windows costs more than 10 % of the total budget.

Take three sips if the clients go 30 % over budget.

 

Down a shot every time Kevin uses a really budget prop.

Down two shots if he’s bought something just to use it as a prop.

Down three shots if the prop is edible.

 

Down a glass if the clients gets rid of their contractors and/or replaces them.

Down a glass if a part of the build breaks down.

Down a glass if a custom-made object has the wrong measurements/doesn’t fit with some other part of the build.

Down a glass if planning permission is denied.

Down a glass if the clients go 50 % or more over budget.

 

Down the entire bottles if the clients are outright refusing to reveal the total cost of the build.

Down the entire bottle if the clients have spent all of their money to half-finish the build and then re-mortgage, but the bank denies them the mortgage.

Down the entire bottle if the house isn’t finished when the episode ends (I hate those episodes!).

Down the entire bottle if the owners of the build appears to hate Kevin by the end of the episode.

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Can’t drink to that – pt 2: Homes Under the Hammer

Homes Under The Hammer is so amazingly budget that I just felt compelled to make a drinking game about it. It’s a show that draws you in with it’s incredibly bad (and many) puns and a music/special effects editor with an incredibly corny taste. I’m not convinced the show isn’t edited in Windows Movie Maker. What else could you possibly want to watch at 10am? If you still don’t know which show I’m talking about, it’s the one where every scene is shot slightly or incredibly askew.

So if you’re British and looking for a reason to get drunk at 10 am, I recommend Homes Under The Hammer and this drinking game… because you are sure to get hammered. (groan) Bazinga!

(And if you want to do the drinking game at another time, here’s an episode. Who uploads entire episodes of Homes Under The Hammer on youtube anyway? o_0)

Take a sip every time:

Anyone says “Needs a little love and attention”.

Anyone says “Right old state”.

Lucy says “Guys”.

The estate agents say the house has been done “to a high standard”.

The buyer or the estate agent pretends to look at a random item.

The scenes are shot from a very odd angle.

Martin is out of breath and tries to hide it after walking up a flight of stairs.

Martin is clearly avoiding angles that shows the balding patch on the back of his head/walks backwards.

Down a shot when:

The background music is a long piano piece.

The new owners are fans of Homes Under The Hammer.

Martin breaks something in the house (e.g pulls off a bit of wallpaper).

The owners never went inside the house before the auction/bought blind.

The owners make a loss (<10k).

The owners stuck to both budget and timescale.

Every time the bidding goes over £50k, £100k or £200k over the guide price.

Down two shots when:

The owners make a loss (>£10k – 50k).

Martin praises the garden or a feature in the garden and finds that it’s gone after the refurbishment.

The owners say “originally…” followed by the revelation that they went massively over budget/time.

The owners hired contractors for practically everything but claims to have done most things themselves.

Martin or Lucy indiscreetly namedrops the title of the song they want to be played in the background (e.g. “This house is truly ‘One in a million’ ;)”).

Down an entire bottle of beer if:

The bidding goes £300k over the guide price.

The buyer sells on the house before even beginning any refurbishment work.

The owners make a loss (>£50k).

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I have this fantasy, which may or may not be reality, that Martin and Lucy record all the voice overs at home in their underwear while having breakfast. I mean think about it: It’s edited in a way that makes you think Martin and Lucy returns to the houses several times. The layout of the show is like this: 1) Lucy and Martin does the intro bit 2) One of them go to the house and looks around. 3) An estate agent shows up and gives their opinion. 4) Martin/Lucy gives a brief summary and ends with “Lets see who bought this when it went under the hammer”. 5) The auction scene. 6) Lucy/Martin interviews the new owner in the house. 7) They do the pt 1 of another home before returning to the “after” scenes for the first home. 8) They return to the house after the refurbishment is finished.

I’ve thought about it and chronology behind shooting the show must be like this: 1) Martin and Lucy shoots the intro and outro scenes together. I’m pretty sure they do ALL of the season’s intro and outro comments in one day, just changing their outfits every once in a while and shoot from different angles to make the scenes a bit different. 2) A camera team is sent to an auction and makes a deal with successful bidder to come visit the house. 3) Lucy or Martin shows up at the house and gives a brief summary of it’s high and low points. The estate agent gives their opinion and then they shoot the segment with the new owner where they talk about the timescale and budget. This is all done in the same day. 4)  A camera team is sent back to film and interview the owners once the refurbishment is done. 5) Lucy and Martin record the voice overs.

So Lucy and Martin probably only spends a month or so each year putting together their scenes for the show, seeing as all the intro and outro are all shot in one day and that they’re only on site for the “before” scenes. They probably only see each other for work a couple of days each year. Martin always talks about how it is important to not “over do” a refurbishment, i.e, spending a lot of money on refurbishment without raising the potential profit due to the ceiling price of the area… I feel like that motto is something that works for Homes Under The Hammer as well. It’s a 10 am show, they probably have to stick to a pretty low budget to make a profit. Minimum effort for a little return.

Anyhow, I love this little campy refurbishment show and I think Lucy and Martin are both much more pleasant than the guy from Grand Designs. But I might make a Grand Designs drinking game in the near future.

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