Taskmaster: When does it start on Channel 4? Who are the contestants? Will Greg Davies and Alex Horne return? All you need to know

The series moves from Dave to Channel 4, but the Greg Davies and Alex Horne series will still be just as strange. Here is when it starts and who’s taking part…

By Alex Fletcher Updated: 15 October 2020 - 10.45am
UKTV

The International Emmy, triple Bafta nominated and all round weird and wonderful entertainment series Taskmaster is back, but it’s got a new home.

This autumn the show moves from Dave to Channel 4, but don’t worry because that’s the only thing they’re planning to change on the entertainment behemoth as it begins its 10th series on October 15 at 9pm.

Here is everything you need to know about Taskmaster series 10…

Taskmaster series 10 - First look at series 10

The first footage of series 10 reveals the two sides of Taskmaster - the hilariously awful and the fabulously creative.

In a challenge that involves carrying pints across the garden, without touching the grass,  while carrying a gigantic teddy bear, Daisy May Cooper proves that she has no future career working in a bar.

On the other hand, in a task that involves the contestants attempting to make the largest item possible vanish, Maawan Rizwan proves that he's capable of some innovative and genius ideas.

Talking to BT TV about the new series, Greg Davies and Alex Horne revealed that Richard Herring is the most competitive contestant in this series.

"There is always a gulf between someone who is very competitive and their actual ability. Herring being the case in point," said Davies.

Horne added: "I think you might expect Katherine Parkinson to be a fully functioning human. But she lets herself down more than anyone. That’s really good."

Watch the first Taskmaster trailer

The trailer, which airs for the first time tonight at 9pm on Channel 4, shows the Taskmaster, Greg Davies, poke fun at the fact that the show was originally developed for Channel 4 before being picked up by Dave where it aired for ten successful series.

Holding court on their gleaming thrones for the first time on Channel 4 will be Greg Davies as the incomparable and all-powerful Taskmaster, and Alex Horne as his faithful sidekick and general dogsbody.

Wax seals will open, dreams will be made and/or broken, and Little Alex Horne will be wrapped around his master’s little finger providing stats and moral support in the most ridiculous and ferociously fought game show on television.

When does Taskmaster start on Channel 4?

'Little' Alex Horne on Taskmaster Channel 4

It has now been announced by Channel 4 that Taskmaster series 10 starts on Thursday, October 15 at 9pm.

The Bafta-winning series returns with Greg Davies perched on his gleaming throne as the incomparable and all-powerful Taskmaster, with his faithful sidekick and general dogsbody Alex Horne sat by his side, scoring the efforts of five top comedians as they tackle perplexing and extraordinary challenges in the name of critically acclaimed entertainment. 

Who are the comedians, celebrities and cast in Taskmaster series 10?

The Taskmaster lineup for series 10 on Channel 4 Channel 4

This year’s batch of famous faces, who are putting themselves through the embarrassing and surreal Taskmaster challenges include five very familiar TV stars.

Daisy May Cooper

Daisy May Cooper Channel 4

"I absolutely love the show and my agent is a huge fan so there was no question really," said Cooper, explaining why she signed up for the series.

"It’s like the last day of term at school when you are allowed to f*** around and the teachers can’t be bothered to set you any work."

The This Country star added: "At home you’re shouting at the TV thinking it’s really obvious how to do the task, but when you’re actually in it your mind goes completely blank and you have limited time to make a decision and so you just go with it. 

"I have learned more about myself in this short time than I have in 33 years."

Johnny Vegas

Johnny Vegas Channel 4

The comedian and actor said that his relationship with Taskmaster Greg Davies was like trying to "impress a stern stepdad".

"You kind of resent [him] but you still want him to like you," said Vegas.

"The way he judges things is almost like a 70s dad where he’s either had a good day at the office or a bad day at the office. The worst sort of mood is when he’s the sort of dad who comes home and says, ‘Just make me a gin and tonic and let me read the paper in peace’.

"But hand on heart, even when he’s being cruel to you, it’s hilarious. I think by episode five in the studio we’d learned to fight back a bit and debate the points. 

"He’d pick up on bits from the tasks that make you go, ‘Did I honestly say that?’ It really haunts you.

"You’ll be walking along the road all happy then you’ll suddenly remember a task and go, ‘Why did I opt to use the rake instead of the rope?’ and it ruins your day and you fall to your knees in a public park and start crying."

Katherine Parkinson

Katherine Parkinson Channel 4

Explaining the magic of Taskmaster, the IT Crowd star said: "I think it’s really profound. It’s a joyful watch.

"You see people failing in all sorts of different ways and you’re bound to relate to at least one of those failures. If it’s anywhere near as fun to watch as it was to film, then we will do well."

Mawaan Rizwan

Mawaan Rizwan Channel 4

Rising star and Two Weeks To Live actor Rizwan said: "Taskmaster is the only place where you see comedians reveal part of their personality that we could otherwise hide behind our jokes.

"But there’s also a bonding that goes on. There are some genuinely vulnerable moments in this show and they’re never forced, they just come up sometimes and that is very beautiful.

"Plus, I have seen a side to Johnny Vegas that maybe I didn’t want to see but maybe I will cherish forever. "

Richard Herring

Richard Herring Channel 4

Long-time series fan and podcast king Richard Herring said: "I don’t think you need to have seen any of it before. The beauty of it is you jump in and you understand it straight away, and it’s magically funny.

"I think just to see people very keenly trying to do something and being humiliated is an enjoyable thing. It doesn’t even matter if you know who the people are.

"The invention of it and the pleasure of it not being you when it goes wrong… as long as you don’t take part you can have a sense of superiority over other idiots doing it. Alex is genius at coming up with ways for people to prove their ineptitude."

Listen to The Official Taskmaster Podcast

You know a show has reached the big time when its got its own official podcast series. Former contestant and reigning champion Ed Gamble will host the audio series.

Each episode will include Ed and a guest reviewing, celebrating and finding the funniest moments in the latest TV episode.

Alex Horne and Greg Davies and previous contestants will all guest on the show.

Who are the former Taskmaster winners

Series 1: Josh Widdicombe

Series 2: Katherine Ryan

Series 3: Rob Beckett

Series 4: Noel Fielding

Series 5: Bob Mortimer

Series 6: Liza Tarbuck

Series 7: Kerry Godliman

Series 8: Lou Sanders

Champion of Champions: Josh Widdicombe

What is Taskmaster?

If you’ve somehow managed to miss the critically acclaimed and extremely funny entertainment series, you’ve been missing out.

Based on Alex Horne’s Edinburgh Fringe show, the series first aired on Dave in 2015.

Across nine series, the show has gripped, thrilled and tickled millions of viewers as comedians have taken on a series perplexing and extraordinary challenges – all for the glory of being Taskmaster champion.

Previous winners have included Ed Gamble, Katherine Ryan, Rob Beckett, Noel Fielding, Josh Widdicombe and the unforgettable Bob Mortimer.

For a flavour of the show, check out Bob Motimer’s finest moments below…

Taskmaster began life as an Edinburgh Fringe show, arranged by Alex Horne, who used his experience working on Big Brother and the hit Channel 4 gameshow The Crystal Maze as inspiration.
 
The series was pitched to Channel 4 when it originally started, but eventually got made by Dave. The snub from Channel 4 is referenced jokingly in the trailer for series 10.
 
There have been 74 episodes of Taskmaster so far and 60 more (five more series) have been ordered by Channel 4.
 
The Taskmaster format has been sold into 106 countries, with 140 episodes of the format being made outside the UK including local versions of the show produced for VTM in Belgium, TVE in Spain, and TVNZ in New Zealand.
 
Comedy talent who have taken part so far include Frank Skinner, James Acaster, David Baddiel, Katherine Ryan, Russell Howard, Aisling Bea, Rose Matafeo, Romesh Ranganathan, and Noel Fielding.
 
The Taskmaster YouTube channel has received over 50 million views and has 305,000 subscribers, the Taskmaster Book 200 Extraordinary Tasks for Ordinary People has sold nearly 100,000 copies and A Taskmaster boardgame released in autumn 2019 entirely sold out a week after it went on sale.
 

Taskmaster starts on Channel 4 on Thursday, October 15.

Taskmaster series 1-9 are available to binge on All 4.

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