Geeks of a certain age love … Debbie Greenwood

Kids TV in the 80s brought us a Miss Great Britain who played computer games. What's not to like about Debbie Greenwood?

Debbie Greenwood. Recently.

Debbie Greenwood. There’s a name you don’t hear very often any more.

Yet back in the 1980s, for a select generation of kids watching BBC childrens’ television programmes, she gave geeks hope. She was not only a woman of many merits, but she also liked computer games. I mean, crikey. That’s interplanetary alignment that just wasn’t supposed to happen back then, surely? Certainly if the reaction I got when I tried to entertain members of the opposite gender with tails of my Gauntlet performance was anything to go by anyway

But happen it did, and Greenwood stepped into the chair of the quiz show First Class. In many respects, there was nothing special about the format itself (even though it tried to be as bleeding edge as it could, with a lot of technology emphasis), although it did have a couple of key assets. Firstly, they played Track & Field on it, at a time when people didn’t play enough Track & Field on the telly. Heck, they played Paperboy, too, and what’s not to love about that?

Secondly, though, there was the hostess herself. Greenwood was a former Miss Great Britain when she landed the First Class gig, and there weren’t many in the watching audience who were demanding a recount, either. She had a smile and magnetism that almost made you want them to turn the computer games off for a bit. Almost.

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Crucially, and there weren’t many in the 80s who achieved this, she managed – for a brief moment – to allow me to convince myself that I wasn’t as said as I clearly was. Talking to friends about this, the mere thought that Greenwood herself wouldn’t be afraid to tackle the 110m hurdles in Track & Field herself was enough to set some off back then. The thought that she’d even talk to you about it with some degree of interest would practically send some over the edge.

Greenwood went from First Class to BBC Breakfast Television (although I can’t honestly say I was awake early enough to notice), and from there she now sells things on QVC. So in the course of, ahem ‘researching’ this piece we’ve thus far bought two bags, a salad bowl, his and hers dressing gowns and some QVC special jewellery. All on expenses, of course…

For some Debbie Greenwood goodness, to bring those wonderful memories flooding back, check out the following clip of her on QVC. My life.


Find Debbie at QVC here


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