Ask A Broadsheet Reader



You dancin’?

He’s askin’

‘sheet commenter Ahjayziz awrites:

[Further to news of an Irish version ‘Dancing With The Stars’ coming soon] Did RTÉ buy the Dancing With The Stars’ format from ABC in the States?

Because ABC bought the ‘Strictly Come Dancing‘ format from the BBC and renamed it ‘Dancing With The Stars’. Did RTÉ really just buy ‘Strictly Come Dancing’?

So they’re replacing ‘The Voice’, a BBC format, with Strictly, a BBC format, but using the American name we’re less familiar with to downplay the fact they’re a bargain basement, awfully executed BBC rip-off?


Previously: Not Strictly Stars

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34 thoughts on “Ask A Broadsheet Reader

        1. rotide

          I stand corrected. RTE was first by about 50 days.

          Moot point in the context of this however.

  1. forfeckssake

    There may be a simpler explanation. If RTE called their show “Strictly Come Dancing” then there would be confusion when people in Ireland Google it or tweet about it, when the Irish media write about it and when it appears in TV listings.

    Nobody in Ireland is going to be discussing the American version but they will be discussing the UK version. By using the American name they differentiate the Irish version from the UK

    1. wake

      But surely they’re going to confuse people with the American name too? When an Irish viewer tunes i and there’s not a Star to be seen

      1. Dόn 'The Unstoppable Force' Pídgéόní

        How can people be confused by a show that is about dancing? What is there to be confused about?

        1. forfeckssake

          About what show they’re talking about. For example if someone days “Did you see Strictly?” Which one? It might be better branding to use the American name to avoid this.

      2. forfeckssake

        Who watches the American version in Ireland. Very few I’m sure. Certainly the newspapers don’t write about it. If someone mentions the show in Ireland you’re not going to imagine they’re talking about the US version but if they mention Strictly it’s very likely they are talking about the UK show.

    1. MarioBalotelli

      Every year I debate paying / not paying. I always just pay as I can’t be arsed with all the follow up letters and grief. Next year may be different. Between this dancing yoke and O’Callaghan’s latest show plus Twink, Brian Ormond and Kathryn Thomas etc – I genuinely can’t stomach putting money in their pockets anymore.

  2. new_flash

    Broadcasters routinely buy and sell formats that have been popular in other markets, The voice is a dutch format not a bbc format. “come dancing” was an old bbc show that they celeb-ed up to make strictly and “The Apprentice” was the first step on the road to the apocalypse for emperor trump. RTE format “the takeover” is getting a uk version later this year I believe.

  3. De Kloot

    This show means nothing to me, have no interest in what it is, what it’s called and who the dancers are….

    That said, my mother will love it. Therefore I have no issue with it being developed for Irish TV and funded in part by my license fee….

    1. MarioBalotelli

      Do you feel you personally get €160 worth of entertainment / news from your licence fee? Genuine question. Not forgetting there’s tonnes of adverts to supplement RTE’s income.

      1. MoyestWithExcitement

        I feel I get my €13 a month worth of content from the three tv stations and five radio stations it pays for, personally. I’m also aware that there are people who like things that I don’t like. I know! I couldn’t believe it when I first found out either.

  4. rotide

    AhJayziz, there’s so many inaccuracies here.

    Firstly , The Voice is not a BBC format. Get your facts straight. It’s another John De Mol format.

    Secondly, Strictly and Dancing with the Stars are the same format, which BBC does indeed own. RTE licensed the format from BBC, not ABC as BBC are the ones that own it.

    The name change is simply down to demographics. More Americans (and Irish people) will tune into a show called Dancing with the Stars than Strictly Come Dancing. This isn’t a difficult concept to grasp.

    Lastly, every TV station worldwide buys and broadcasts formats. Even the BBC do The Voice. Does that make the BBC a bargain basement rip-off?

    Ridiculous post. Stick to ranting about RTE staff pay.

    1. ahjayzis

      On the Voice, this was a comment I made in about 5 seconds, not a researched piece I did :p

      But my point kind of stands – they’re press releasing that they’ve bought the rights to the format of a US show nobody in Ireland watches – purposefully not mentioning the fact that those rights are actually for Strictly, which has a huge following in Ireland. The exact same show is already available to most every television in Ireland, executed I forecast to a far higher production standard than this will be. I really think that’s do downplay them regurgitating BBC content once again.

      1. rotide

        They’re not regurgitating BBC content. They are using a format that BBC sells to make their own content. Every TV station IN THE WORLD does this.

        They also use formats from elsewhere as well as using formats sourced in Ireland and sold around the world.

        This one really isn’t worth the wear and tear on the pearls AJ

  5. Holden MaGroin


    Go outside. There’s more importanter things, like boys.

    Go on now. Off you go.

  6. Marc

    Strictly Come Dancing is the BBC name for it on BBC.

    Dancing with the Stars is the name BBC use for international resale.

    1. Vote Rep #1

      No, its all a big conspiracy, RTE is trying to hide the fact that it is buying it from one place by pretending they are buying it from another place because these are the things that are important and definitely not tragic. It is possibly as tragic as dancing with the stars is going to be.

    2. Damian

      And what about Dances with Wolves? I’d have no problem watching Twink and Teddy getting mauled by a 6 pack in the forest. Now that’s entertainment

    3. Kieran NYC

      Strictly Come Dancing derives from Come Dancing, the ‘ordinary people’ ballroom dancing show from the 70s – 90s before it got ‘slebbed up.

      Without that history behind it, calling it Strictly Come Dancing anywhere outside the UK doesn’t make any sense.

  7. al

    the BBC own the strictly brand but sell the format worldwide as dancing with the stars.

    probably something to do with the origins of strictly. it was an old show reformatted with celebrities rather than the general public. so id guess the strictly name was left because the British viewers would have had a connection to it.

    but when it was sold to America, the americans, along with most other people in the world, would not have heard of it so they renamed it dancing with the stars to highlight the celebrity factor cause as we all know nobody watches a show unless its got celebs in it ..

    didn’t they the UK version and the US version share judges for a while?

  8. Optimus Grime

    They really are stretching the term Stars though.

    Grainne Seoige’s new vehicle methinks!

  9. Continuity Jay-Z

    Sure lookit, it should be called Quickly Go Drinking because that is what will happen when it comes on the telly anyways.

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