In 1960s UK bingo would fill more halls than stadiums for football. Though as the millenium approached, the game suffered a fall in popularity, bringing with it the demise of a number of high street and town centre bingo halls and the merger of major bingo operators.
That said, the famous game has retained a devoted fanbase, where it is still a regular fixture of social clubs, holiday parks and seaside resorts.
With the proliferation of the Internet, fans can now play in their own home and at a time that’s convenient to them. And there’s no missing out on the social interactivity you’d usually get at your traditional bingo hall too, as most good bingo sites have chat rooms and messaging options.
While still a relatively popular hobby, you see bingo in films and TV shows especially where some light relief is needed. Let’s take a look at some of the funniest bingo moments from our screens now.
One of America’s longest running prime time animations and widely recognised series around the world, The Simpsons has welcomed stars from the showbiz, business and political world.
In one episode, there’s a short scene in which two players are struggling to follow the game of bingo.
When I-25 is called, one of the players yells to ask what letter he called out. After the reply, the second person asks which number was called. The caller says 25.
When the player then asks which game, the caller says “Bingo” and then throws away the bingo card.
Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father
Launched in 2017, this Netflix series sees Jack Whitehall and his father share the weird and wonderful of experiences as they travel the globe.
Series one took them to South East Asia, while the second saw the pair visit Eastern Europe. The most recent series found them visit the USA, including the Sun City West retirement home where Jack – the caller in a bingo game – unexpectedly announces Michael (his dad) will personally boost the prize from $100 to $1,000.
After this surprise announcement, Michael might have preferred to stay home and play bingo online instead.
Benidorm has one of the best bingo settings of any British sitcom. Due to a rainstorm, the guests have to spend the night indoors and Lesley suggests a bingo game to keep them entertained. The prize is a brand new laptop.
A drunken Pauline steals the show though. When the callers announces 6, she rushes to the microphone to say she’d won. What happens next is a speech insulting the guests before she collapses on the floor. The biggest surpsise that arrives later on is when she receives her prize that is in fact a lap dog – not a laptop.
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Larry David is known for his cringe humour and is something of a comedy legend. He is the co-creator of Seinfeld, arguably one of the funniest TV shows to appear on our screens. Fans of David will see him in Curb Your Enthusiasm, which has a fantastic bingo scene.
After the caller calls a number, Larry says “bingo” which prompts Lenore to come and check his ticket. The numbers don’t add up, surprisingly. The next number is called, and with that, Ruth gets a full house and wins.
The situation is completely awkward which is what makes it so funny. Larry asks to see Lenore’s pad after this to find where the winning numbers are written and gets mad when she refuses to.