Bullseye – The Good and Bad and the Bully

A darts themed TV show doesn’t immediately leap out as a gameshow idea that’s going to grip the nation. In 1980’s Britian though, Bullseye, presented by Jim Bowen, did just that. The premise was simple, pairs of contestants work their way through rounds that require both general knowledge and dart playing ability. The winning pair then move on to the prize board round, and from there have the option to play for the star prize (anyone after a speedboat?). Midway through the show an actual professional darts player throws nine darts with the total in UK pounds going to charity of his or her choice. Yes, there’s a lot going on!

One thing that stands out more than anything (yes, more than the unfathomable fashion, crazy hair styles, and ‘Tony’ getting the scores wrong) is the variance in darting skill. Below I’ve presented a contrast of what Bullseye had to offer. A Youtube video entitled ‘Bullseye – Worst Ever Darts Player’ demonstrating someone who clearly can’t throw darts for toffee, followed by a a clip of a professional darts player, Alan Evans, scoring the highest ever total in the 9 dart charity throw round in the show’s history.


Win, lose or draw, contestants would go home with a silver tankard, and a ‘Bully’, a rubber model of the mascot of the show. In fact the catchphrase of the show was ‘You can’t beat a bit of Bully’! The show retains its strangely addictive quality to this very day! As for the charity throw segment, unfortunately the highest ever total came a series before the show started handing out a much coveted ‘Bronze Bully’ to the highest scorer of the series


The highest scores for the Charity darts segments by series after Alan Evan’s 401 score are below:

Series Year Name Score
Series 5 1985—86 John Lowe 380
Series 6 1986—87 Lionel Smith 365
Series 7 1987—88 Ray Farrell 340
Series 8 1988—89 Mike Gregory 380
Series 9 1989—90 Eric Bristow 380
Series 10 1990—91 Bob Anderson 380
Series 11 1991—92 Mandy Solomons 363
Series 12 1992—93 Mike Gregory 340
Series 13 1993—94 Kevin Painter 380

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