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The Krypton Factor
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The Krypton Factor

The Krypton Factor was a British game show, hosted by Gordon Burns, which ran from 1977 to 1995 on ITV. Four contestants would compete in several different games, some studio-bound, some not. Each was introduced by the distinctive K logo, which would morph into a symbol for the round. Some of the actual games were changed during the run of the series, but the qualities they purported to test remained the same:

  1. Mental agility - often a memory test.
  2. Response - latterly (and most famously) this consisted of each player taking turns on a flight simulator and being marked by an actual flight instructor.
  3. Observation - this involved watching a specially made video clip.
  4. Physical ability - probably the most memorable of the rounds, this involved the contestants racing to complete an army assault course, including cargo nets, rope swings and one of those rope slides the army like showing off. Unlike the village fête; version, however, this finished with a plunge into muddy water.
  5. Intelligence - a 2- or 3-dimensional puzzle where shapes had to be put together to fill a rectangular grid or make a cube.
  6. General knowledge - a quickfire round.

In the first five games, 10 points were awarded to the winner, then 6, 4 and 2 to the remaining contestants. In the final game 1 (later 2) points were awarded for each correct answer.

The show was produced by Granada Television. Rumours of a revival on the BBC never materialised.


A U.S version is currently in production by Fox TV.