|Creative director||Michael Kelpie|
|Presented by||Bradley Walsh|
|Theme music composer||Paul Farrer|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||14|
|Running time||60 minutes (inc. adverts)|
|Picture format||16:9 (HDTV) 1080i|
|Original release||29 June 2009 -|
The Chase is a British television quiz show broadcast on ITV and hosted by Bradley Walsh. Contestants play against a professional quizzer, known as the "chaser", who attempts to prevent them from winning a cash prize.
The six chasers are Mark Labbett, Shaun Wallace, Anne Hegerty, Paul Sinha, Jenny Ryan, and Darragh Ennis. Labbett and Wallace have both been chasers since series 1, while Hegerty joined in series 2, Sinha in series 4, Ryan in series 9 and Ennis in series 13. With rare exceptions for special episodes, only one chaser participates in any given episode.
A team of four contestants individually attempt to amass as much money as possible, which is later added to a prize fund if the contestant survives their chase. The chaser must attempt to catch each contestant during their chase, eliminating that person from the game and preventing the money from being added to the collective prize fund. In the individual chase, the player must choose between a higher offer, their earned money, and a lower offer. Later, in the final round, contestants who survived their chases play collectively as a team against the chaser for an equal share of the prize fund.
With a regular audience of three to five million, The Chase is one of ITV's most successful daytime shows ever.
It has been nominated six times at the National Television Awards, winning in 2016, 2017 and 2019. It has also become a successful international franchise: regional versions have been made in Australia, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Israel, Norway, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Turkey and the United States. Labbett and Hegerty feature as chasers on the Australian version (with Wallace appearing as a "Guest Chaser" in 2018). Labbett featured as the sole chaser on the 2013-2015 American version.
Each contestant individually attempts to accumulate money for the team's prize fund through two rounds. In the first round, known as the "Cash Builder", the contestant answers as many questions as they can within one minute, with each correct answer worth £1,000 and no penalty for incorrect answers or passes. After completing the Cash Builder, the contestant enters the "Head-to-Head" round, attempting to move the money down to the bottom of a seven-step board and into the team's prize fund ("home") without being caught by the chaser. The board had eight steps in the first series.
The contestant is given three options by the Chaser at the start of the Head-to-Head round; play for the money earned in the Cash Builder and start three steps down the board (requiring five correct answers to reach home), accept a higher offer and start two steps down, or accept a lower offer and start four steps down. The lower offer can be zero, or even a negative amount if the team has already banked some money. Once the starting position is selected, the host asks a series of multiple-choice questions to the contestant and the Chaser, both of whom individually select one of the three answer options on keypads. After either person locks in a guess, the other must do so within five seconds or be locked out for that turn. A correct answer moves the person who gave it one step down the board, while a miss or lock-out leaves them where they are.
If the contestant successfully reaches home without being caught, they advance to the Final Chase and their money is added to the team's prize fund (or deducted, if they took a negative amount). If the chaser catches up, the contestant is eliminated and the money is forfeited. If all four contestants are caught by the chaser, they nominate one contestant to play the Final Chase alone.
The contestants who have won their head-to-head chases blindly select one of two question sets for themselves, with the other set put aside for the Chaser, and then have two minutes to answer as many questions as possible on the buzzer. Any response given by a contestant who has not buzzed-in is automatically ruled wrong; if only one contestant is participating in this round, the buzzer is not used. Every correct answer moves the team one step ahead of the Chaser, and they are given a head start of one step per contestant participating in this round. The contestants may not discuss or confer on any questions during this portion of the round and may pass as often as desired. There is no time limit on individual questions; the host will only ask a new question after someone has either answered or passed on the current one.
The Chaser is then given two minutes to answer questions from the unused set in an attempt to catch the team, moving one step ahead per correct response. If the Chaser passes or misses a question, the clock is briefly stopped and the team are given a chance to discuss it and respond; a correct answer pushes the Chaser back one step, or (from series 3 onwards) moves the team ahead one step if the Chaser is at the starting line. If the Chaser catches the team before the time expires, the prize fund is forfeited and the contestants receive nothing. During celebrity editions, a consolation £1,000 is donated to each celebrity's chosen charity.
If the Chaser is unable to catch up to the team, the participating contestants split the prize fund equally. If all four contestants are caught in their head-to-head chases and the one they nominate wins the Final Chase, each contestant wins £1,000.
Three episodes are filmed in a day, each one taking around an hour and a half to film. According to Walsh, "It runs like clockwork." The Final Chase can be stopped and re-started if Walsh stumbles on a question. He told the Radio Times, "If there is a slight misread, I am stopped immediately - bang - by the lawyers. We have the compliance lawyers in the studio all the time. What you have to do is go back to the start of the question, literally on videotape where my mouth opens - or where it's closed from the previous question - and the question is re-asked. It is stopped to the split second."
Between March 2020 and late June 2020, production of the series was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic; the series was already on a previously-scheduled production hiatus at the time of the suspension. In an interview with The Suns TV Mag, Walsh said that the show was "at least 100 episodes behind schedule" due to lockdown; during the production hiatus, repeats were shown in the programme's regular timeslot.
A spin-off series titled The Chase: Celebrity Special featuring celebrity teams as contestants began airing on ITV in 2011. As many contestants are comedians or actors, there is a much-higher comedic element. The game is played the same way as the regular version. However, if all four celebrities have been caught by the chaser, the prize fund during the Final Chase is £20,000 (originally £4,000). If the team is caught during the Final Chase, a consolation prize of £1,000 is awarded to the charities for each celebrity who advanced to this stage.
For celebrity specials airing at Christmas, the chasers frequently appear in costumes adhering to a common theme, such as Panto villains, subjects of famous paintings, or characters typically associated with Christmas.
In February 2017, ITV commissioned The Family Chase, a spin-off featuring a team of four family members. The six-episode spin-off debuted on 2 September 2017. The second series of 16 episodes was commissioned and commenced airing on 24 March 2019. This version follows the same rules as the parent programme, but any winnings in the Final Chase are awarded to the entire family rather than individual members.
In November 2019, ITV commissioned another spin-off called Beat the Chasers. It began airing in prime-time on 27 April 2020 and features contestants attempting to beat up to five chasers to win big cash prizes. The chasers that featured in the show were Sinha, Labbett, Ryan, Hegerty and Wallace. A single contestant plays the Cash Builder round, answering a series of multiple-choice questions worth £1,000 each. The round ends once they either miss a question or get five right; a miss on the first question immediately eliminates the contestant with no winnings. They must then decide how many chasers from two to five to face in a timed head-to-head round, with the chasers specifying a time limit for themselves (always less than 60 seconds) and offering larger cash prizes as an incentive to face more of them. The offer to face two chasers is always equal to the amount earned in the Cash Builder.
The contestant's clock is set to 60 seconds, while the chasers' clock is set to their agreed-on time. Only one clock runs at any given moment, starting with the contestant; the side in control must answer a question correctly to stop their clock and turn control over to the opposing side. The chasers must buzz-in to respond and may not confer on any questions. The contestant wins the money on offer if the chasers' clock runs out first, or nothing if their own clock runs out.
A second series of Beat the Chasers commenced airing on 3 January 2021, and continued consecutively for seven nights, excluding 9 January, until 10 January 2021. Due to the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, the second series featured no studio audience.
A third series was commissioned by ITV. ITV did confirm it was the intention to have six Chasers for the third series with Ennis now joining the show, however, plans had to be put on hold due to Paul Sinha being absent due to illness.. The series began with a celebrity special on 27 March 2021 and once again featured no studio audience.
In this special isolation version of the show, broadcast on The Chase's YouTube channel and shown straight after the main show, all five Chasers are presenters and viewers at home can play along, for they are the contestants. Each series has five episodes; the first series was shown in mid-May 2020, and was hosted by Jenny Ryan. Between late-May and early-June, the second series was shown across consecutive days and presented by Shaun Wallace. On 1 March 2021, it was announced that a new series would be available on the ITV Hub for six episodes, every Monday at 6:00 p.m.
In November 2020, ITV announced another spin-off in which The Beast, The Dark Destroyer and The Governess go on a road trip around the world. On their travels, they play against child geniuses, great apes, dolphins and robots. The series takes them to the UK, USA and Japan. Episode 1 of the show aired on 21 January 2021, episode 2 aired on 28 January 2021 and episode 3 aired on 4 February 2021. The series was narrated by Rob Brydon.
|Series||Start date||End date||Episodes||Notes||References|
|1||29 June 2009||10 July 2009||10||Aired as one of three summer replacements for Golden Balls, with the other two being Divided and The Fuse.|||
|2||24 May 2010||19 July 2010||40||No episode aired on 29 June due to The World Cup match between Paraguay and Japan.|||
|3||3 January 2011||25 February 2011||40||Series 3 had no breaks and neither had Series 1 and 2.|||
|4||5 September 2011||30 January 2012||60||Series 4 took a break from 31 October - 2 January.|||
|5||31 January 2012||26 October 2012||120||Series 5 took breaks from 13-17 February, 2-6 April, 4 June - 31 August & 17 October.|||
|6||29 October 2012||21 November 2013||150||Series 6 took breaks from 24 December - 1 January, 11-15 February, 25 March - 5 April 27-31 May & 1 July 2013 - 20 November 2013.|||
|7||2 September 2013||17 November 2014||150||Series 7 took breaks from 28 October - 1 November 11 November - 19 December, 17-21 February, 7-18 April, 6 June & 15 June - 4 July.|||
|8||1 September 2014||3 July 2015||150||Series 8 took breaks from 22 December - 2 January & 20 April - 29 May.|||
|9||22 June 2015||6 September 2016||190||Series 9 took breaks from 3-28 August, 23 September - 7 October & 21 December - 1 January.|||
|10||15 April 2016||24 October 2017||190||Series 10 took breaks from 13 June - 26 August, 19 December - 1 January, 20 January & 22 March.|||
|11||25 April 2017||3 September 2018||170||Series 11 took breaks from 1-26 May, 19 June - 1 September & 25 December - 1 January.|||
|12||2 March 2018||21 September 2020||170||Series 12 took breaks from 28 May - 31 August, 10-31 December 2018, 11-15 March, 1-5 April & 17 May 2019 - 20 September 2020.|||
|13||7 March 2019||2021||210||Series 13 took breaks from 20 May - 30 August, 11 November - 31 December 2019, 9-13 March 2020, 23 March - 31 August, 4 November, 20 November, 25 November, 27 November, 2 - 3 December, 9 December, 14 December & 17 December 2020 - present|
|14||4 November 2020||TBA||210||Series 14 took breaks from 5 - 19 November, 23 - 24 November, 26 November - 1 December, 4 - 8 December, 10 - 11 December, 15 - 31 December 2020, 20 January 2021 & 15 March - 16 April.|
All five chasers (as of the date of production) took part in the 1,000th episode on 29 September 2016, with a different chaser selected at random for each head-to-head round and the fifth participating in the Final Chase. This format has also been used for the Christmas edition of the Celebrity Specials.
|Series||Start date||End date||Episodes||Notes|
|1||29 October 2011||10 December 2011||6||Series 1 had no breaks.|
|2||19 August 2012||7 October 2012||6||Series 2 had no breaks.|
|3||5 October 2013||28 December 2013||15||Series 3 had no breaks.|
|4||30 August 2014||8 March 2015||18||The last two episodes of the series aired in March 2015.|
|5||24 October 2015||15 May 2016||16||This series aired in two parts; series took a break from 19 December 2015 - 20 March 2016.|
|6||11 September 2016||26 November 2017||16||Episodes 1-8 aired in Autumn 2016. Episodes 9 - 14 aired in Summer 2017. Episodes 15 and 16 aired in November 2017. Series 6 took breaks from 6 November 2016 - 2 July 2017 and 27 August 2017 - 29 October 2017. No episode was broadcast on 30 July 2017.|
|7||14 October 2017||21 October 2018||10||The first eight episodes aired in Autumn 2017, with the remaining episode broadcast in October 2018. The Christmas Special aired on 24 December 2017. The first two episodes were broadcast on Saturdays in October 2017, but the next six episodes aired on Sundays in November and December 2017. The series took breaks on 5 and 26 November 2017 when Series 6 episodes were broadcast.|
|8||14 October 2018||2021||8||The first four episodes aired on Sundays in Autumn 2018, alternating with Series 9 episodes. The Christmas special aired on 16 December 2018. Episode Six aired on 19 October 2019. Series 8 took breaks on 21 and 28 October 11 and 25 November, and 2 and 9 December 2018. Series 8 then returned with 2 episodes on 5 September and 12 September 2020. Series 8 then took breaks on 19 and 26 September and 3 October 2020. Episode 7 is the last episode still set to air from Series 8.|
|9||8 June 2018||12 October 2019||8||The first episode of the series was entitled "The Chase for Soccer Aid" and aired on 8 June 2018. The next four episodes aired on Sundays from 28 October 2018, alternating with Series 8 episodes. The final three episodes were broadcast on Saturdays in Autumn 2019, alternating with Series 10 episodes. Series 9 took breaks on 4 and 18 November 2 and 16 December 2018, and 21 and 28 September 2019.|
|10||14 June 2019||2021||12||The first episode of the series was entitled "The Chase for Soccer Aid" and aired on 14 June 2019. Episodes resumed on Saturdays in Autumn 2019, alternating with Series 9 episodes. Series 10 took breaks on 14 September and 5-12 October 2019. Series 10 then began resuming episodes on Saturdays from 19 September - 10 October 2020. Episode 12 is the last episode still set to air from Series 10.|
|11||17 October 2020||TBA||12||Series 11 was due to be recorded in two parts, in April and September 2020. The first block of 6 episodes due to be recorded in April 2020 was postponed owing to the COVID-19 lockdown in England. Six episodes (including two Christmas Specials) were recorded in September 2020 with very strict measures in place, including a limited number of audience members, and contestants seats being social distanced. The contestants and Walsh, and the Chasers, were in Close Contact Cohorts meaning limited physical closeness was permitted under the industry guidelines. The first episode aired on 17 October 2020 and episodes continued every Saturday evenings until 7 November 2020. Series 11 resumed, when the two Christmas specials aired on 25 December, and 26 December 2020.|
|Series||Start date||End date||Episodes|
|1||2 September 2017||7 October 2017||6|
|2||24 March 2019||24 May 2020||16|
|Series||Start date||End date||Episodes||Presenter||Broadcast||Network(s)|
|1||18 May 2020||22 May 2020||5||Jenny Ryan||Monday to Friday||YouTube and Facebook|
|2||26 May 2020||14 June 2020||5||Shaun Wallace||Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday|
|3||8 March 2021||12 April 2021||6||Jenny, Shaun, Anne Hegerty, Mark Labbett, Paul Sinha and Darragh Ennis||Monday||ITV Hub|
|Series||Start date||End date||Episodes|
|1||27 April 2020||1 May 2020||5|
|2||3 January 2021||10 January 2021||7|
|3||27 March 2021||2021||TBC|
|Series||Start date||End date||Episodes|
|1||21 January 2021||4 February 2021||3|
The Chase is highly popular with critics and viewers. Despite early criticism, opinion has improved over time. Some critics, as well as the chasers, put the show's success down to Walsh as host and his many memorable moments, some of which come from questions or answers which often leave him in hysterics. Labbett also said that the sense of fun and the variety of chasers is a major factor. Sinha said, "The format has been brilliantly thought out. No matter the relative strengths of the players, it is resolutely a team game, with a dramatic climax."
The Chase has also been criticised on several occasions, such as the Final Chase, when it is alleged that Walsh asks the chasers' questions more quickly than those of the contestants. In an interview with the Radio Times, Walsh repudiated those claims: "We have lawyers on the floor to watch all of this. I read [the questions] at the same speed for both." He went on to say, "Don't forget, if I've got Mark Labbett answering questions for two minutes and I've got a team answering for two minutes, the team aren't going to be quicker. Simple as that, because they have to press the button [before answering], which is why they get a head start based on how many people are in the final. If you've got three people in the final chase that's a three-step head start-that's about a twelve-second advantage."
There have also been a number of games where the chaser has won with almost no time remaining on the clock, but spokespeople have insisted that an independent adjudicator - a representative from Beyond Dispute Ltd - always checks each show.
On 6 April 2016, on an episode where Labbett was the chaser, a glitch occurred whereby the clock froze at 10 seconds and then increased to 11 seconds, giving Labbett an extra second. Although the contestants were far ahead and there was no chance of their being caught (and would win a £27,000 pot), a spokesperson for the show told OK! Online the following day that an error occurred during the editing process, but gameplay was otherwise not affected by it.
On 4 March 2019, Walsh asked a question about which band had the fewest members - with the possible answers being the Proclaimers, the Pretenders or the Prodigy. Many viewers criticised ITV for deciding to air the episode hours after the news had publicly broken about the death of the Prodigy's frontman Keith Flint.
During its first two series, the show averaged 1-2 million viewers, then over 2 million during series three. By December 2012, The Chase had become ITV's most popular "teatime" programme since The Paul O'Grady Show in 2005, with over 3 million viewers an episode. In January 2021, The Chase managed a peak audience of over 5 million, an all-time high. Almost every episode is now seen between 4 and 5 million viewers; and each episode regularly features on ITV's Top 15 weekly broadcasts.
In its timeslot, The Chase airs at the same time as BBC One's Pointless, a game show launched in August 2009, two months after The Chases debut. The two programmes usually receive similar ratings (for example in September 2012, The Chase had 2.44 million viewers versus 2.27 million for Pointless). However, between October 2012 and January 2013, The Chase beat Pointless in the ratings each week. For two weeks in February 2013, Pointless received a higher share than The Chase (3.53 million viewers to 3.41 million, and again 3.58 million viewers to 3.30 million).
|2013||National Television Awards||Best Daytime Programme||Nominated|||
|TV Guide Awards||Nominated|||
|2014||National Television Awards||Nominated|||
|2019||Best Quiz Show||Won|||
|2020||The Bruce Forsyth Entertainment Award||Nominated|||
No longer airing
|Country||Local title||Channel(s)||Presenter(s)||Chaser(s)||Premiere date||End date|
|Australia||The Chase Australia||Seven Network||Andrew O'Keefe (2015-2021)
Larry Emdur (2021-) 
Mark Labbett (2016-2020)
Shaun Wallace (Guest Chaser; 2018)
Cheryl Toh (Guest Chaser; 2019-)
|2013-1014 September 2015|
Ti?ozh?n wénhuà míngrén
(Challenge the Culture Masters)
|Jiangxi Television||Liú Wèi ()||Meng Man ()
Ji Lianhai ()
A Yi ()
Kang Zhen ()
Li Bo ()
|2014-0720 July 2014||4 October 2014|
|HRT||Tarik Filipovi? (2013-2019)
Jo?ko Lokas (2019-)
|Dean Kotiga (2013-)
Mirko Mio?i? (2013-2016)
Morana Zibar (2013-)
Kre?imir Me?eral-Su?evi? (2016-)
Mladen Vukorepa (2017-)
|3 November 2013|
|Alpha TV Cyprus||Tasos Tryfonos||Silia Ioannidou
George Pamporidis (Guest Chaser; 2020)
Louis Patsalidis (Guest Chaser; 2020)
Christiana Aristotelous (Guest Chaser; 2020)
|13 September 2020|
|Czech Republic||Na Lovu
(On The Hunt)
|MTV3||Mikko Leppilampi||Eero Ylitalo
|30 August 2018|
|Germany||Gefragt - Gejagt
|NDR Fernsehen (2012-2015)
Das Erste (2015-)
|Alexander Bommes||Holger Waldenberger (2012, 2014-2015)
Sebastian Jacoby (2013-)
Sebastian Klussmann (2013-)
Klaus Otto Nagorsnik (2014-)
Gra?yna Werner (2017)
Manuel Hobiger (2018-)
Thomas J. Kinne (2018-)
|8 July 2012|
|KAN 11||Ido Rosenblum||Itai Hermann (2017-)
Ron Kofman (Guest Chaser; 2017 and 2018)
Nadav Jacobi (Guest Chaser; 2018)
Michal Sharon (2018-)
|2017-0518 May 2017|
HaMirdaf ad HaBait
(The Chase To Home)
|Dudu Erez||Itai Hermann||26 March 2020||7 April 2020|
|TV 2||Sturla Berg-Johansen||Trine Aalborg
Jan Arild Breistein
Thomas Kolåsæter (2015-2016)
|2014-097 September 2014||11 May 2016|
|Russia 1||Alexander Gurevich||Alexander Ediger
|2012-1117 November 2012||14 September 2013|
||RTS||Jovan Memedovi?||Milorad Milinkovi? (Series 1-)
Uro? ?uri? (Series 1-5)
Milica Jokanovi? (Series 2-)
?arko Stevanovi? (Series 5-)
Slobodan Ne?ovi? (Series 1)
Maja Lali? (Series 1)
|2013-1028 October 2013|
|La 1||Ion Aramendi||Erundino Alonso
Ruth de Andrés
David Leo García (2021-)
|10 February 2020|
|Kanal D||Uraz Kaygilaro?lu||Muhsin Divan||2014-049 April 2014||19 January 2015|
|United States||The Chase||GSN (2013-2015)
|Brooke Burns (2013-2015)
Sara Haines (2021-)
|Mark Labbett (2013-2015)
Brad Rutter (2021-)
Ken Jennings (2021-)
James Holzhauer (2021-)
|2013-086 August 2013|
No longer airing
|Country||Local title||Channel(s)||Presenter(s)||Chaser(s)||Premiere date||End date|
|Australia||Beat the Chasers Australia||Seven Network||Andrew O'Keefe (2020)
Larry Emdur (2021-)
Anne Hegery (2021-)
|1 November 2020|
(The Super Chase)
|MTV3||Mikko Leppilampi||Eero Ylitalo
|5 February 2021|
|Netherlands||Beat the Champions||RTL4||Chantal Janzen||Diederik Jekel
Nynke de Jong
|3 January 2021|
|Spain||La 1||Ion Aramendi||Erundino Alonso
Ruth de Andrés
David Leo García
On 12 December 2012, a version for iOS was released by Barnstorm Games. The app features four chasers (excluding Jenny "The Vixen" Ryan and Darragh "The Menace" Ennis, both of whom had not yet appeared on the programme at the time of release) and can be played by up to four people, as in the actual show. The only differences between the app and the show are that four choices are presented for questions in the Cash Builder and the Final Chase rounds and that no Final Chase is played if all four players are caught in their head-to-head chases. The app is designed for both iPhones and iPads. An updated version, The Chase: Ultimate Edition, was released in 2017 and features five chasers (excluding Ennis) and host Walsh. In 2020, the app is updated with now featuring Ennis.