Take a chance on I Can Hear Your Voice

I Can Hear Your Voice (BBC One, 9.15pm)
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Stop! It’s time to give a little respect, break those chains of love and take a chance on I Can Hear Your Voice.

Sometimes the show features a surprising but wonderful guest, and that’s certainly the case with the latest episode – bona fide 1980s pop superstar Andy Bell, frontman of Erasure, is joining in the fun.

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He’ll be assisting regular celebrity investigators Jimmy Carr, Alison Hammond and Amanda Holden when they try to help two sisters from Leeds figure out which singers have the voice of an angel, and who is tone deaf – simply by watching them lip-sync to a well-known tune.

Andy may have more of a chance of guessing correctly – after all, despite having a brilliant voice, he was forced to mime many, many times during performances alongside his bandmate Vince Clarke during their appearances on Top of the Pops back in the day.

It promises to be a cracking edition of the game show which is now in its second series. Like The Masked Singer, the format started life in South Korea and has since been remade around the world. The BBC version is given a down-to-earth British feel by its host, Paddy McGuinness. He promises that at the start of each programme, he’s as much in the dark about who’s good and who’s bad as the competitors and everyone watching at home.

“I like it that way because otherwise I think I’d be the type of person to be giving the contestants a wink,” he laughs. “It’s always a surprise at the end, and although I have my own opinions, I don’t share those with the guys as I’m not there for that, I’m there to host the show. That is the job of the celebrity investigators, they are there to help the contestants with any little nuggets they have spotted.

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“So, on that final round, when the singer sings, whether they are good or bad, I always think the other way around! I always think a bad singer is going to be good, and a good singer is going to be bad. So, every show is a surprise for me.”

McGuinness loves the series, but perhaps not for the reasons you might think – it’s not necessarily the competition itself that prompted him to take on the presenter’s role.

“When I heard the format and watched the American pilot, I instantly knew I had a bit of free rein,” he explains. “The reason I loved Take Me Out was because I had that element.

“There is the script but after that you can have fun with it, and that’s what I can do with this show. There is a lot of singing and dancing, all non-scripted – much to the producer’s disapproval – but I go with it!”

Let’s hope the producer is particularly annoyed this week, because those impromptu moments are often what make the entire show – and if Paddy can persuade Andy to take part too, then all the better.