My interview with Michael Pope concludes today, and we round things off by getting down to the real nitty gritty of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire winning strategies….
SH: Have you noticed in all the shows you’ve observed that there are certain times when it’s strategically best to use the three lifelines?
MP: There was kind of a perceived of order of when you should use those. You go to Ask The Audience on a general knowledge question. I would be hopeless at who Brad Pitt is married to now. The audience will be fantastic at that. That’s when you go to Ask The Audience.
SH: Yeah, those Who magazine and Kardashian questions I wouldn’t know.
MP: That’s right. That’s what you go to. 50/50… don’t use 50/50 when you’re already tossing up between two answers, because you can bet that it’s been assigned so that the two you’re thinking are The Two. You go for 50/50 when you think it’s a question that’s above the intelligence of the audience, and when you have no idea. Then your stab in the dark goes from one-in-four to one-in-two. You Phone A Friend when it is a really specific question, and “Gee my friend works in that area!”
And it is odd the number of times people use the wrong lifeline at the wrong time. But in a nutshell;
Ask The Audience is when it’s general population kind of information that you have slipped past or you just don’t know.
Phone A Friend is when it’s a really specific question right up your friend’s alley.
and 50/50 is when you’ve got no idea, and you want to reduce your odds from one-in-four to just one-in-two.
SH: Just finally, are there any finer details of the format or any other little things that you’ve picked up after watching it so many times that you might be able to pass on?
MP: It was in observing winning contestants that I came to the conclusion about ‘Talk out loud’. It’s those who said “Look, I think it might be C because my brother-in-law used to be a such-and-such…” And you can hear them, in their voice, find… “Yes!” And then “that’s right!” You can hear the answer coming from the back of nowhere into the forefront of their mind and then they say “Oh, lock in C!” As opposed to the people who look in silence and are probably doing that train of thought in their head. But it’s really hard to have a train of thought in your head – it’s much easier to articulate it. So that would be the biggest tip on that one. Also the number of people who look at a question and go “I think it’s B. Yeah, it’s B. B.” And then “Hang on…” Because they had no time limit they kind of second-guessed themselves and went “I think…” and they’d talk themselves out of B, and go for D. And it turned out to be B. So whatever it is that niggled you to have that gut reaction – that first reaction – I would probably go with that. Unless through discussion something else comes but if you’re just wavering in the wind, I’d go back to my first thought.
SH: I don’t have any other questions at this time. Michael, you’ve been so generous with your knowledge and experience – thank you very much!
MP: Cool. That’s alright, Stephen Hall.
Again, I can’t thank Michael enough for giving so generously of his time, knowledge and experience. And the last part of this interview serves as a good prelude to my next one – that’s with Who Wants To Be A Millionaire winner (and therefore, real live millionaire!) Martin Flood.
That’ll be coming up very soon, so keep on checking back here at howtowingameshows.com!