Since I started blogging about television back in 2003/04, the one constant from those I interact with online have been calls for the return of It’s A Knockout. From comments online to people I meet while out and about, there seems to be a generation of people aged 25-45 that are very keen to see Australians take to the field to represent their state while battling large inanimate objects while wearing costumes.

Ten have finally come to the party with the announcement today that It’s A Knockout would return over summer this year. With tongue firmly in cheek, co-host H.G. Nelson is quoted in the press release as calling this the “People’s Olympics” and that it’d fill the gaping hole left in Ten’s schedule by the loss of the AFL. While IAK has been rumoured to return for a while, it’s certainly a surprise to see that the show is set to air so soon with the show airing in just a few months time over the summer.

Billy J. Smith and Fiona MacDonald have been sidelined, with the aforementioned H.G. Nelson joined by Ten sports presenter Brad McEwan and former Hi 5 star Charli Robinson presenting the new version of the series. While the announcement of Robinson leaves me a little cold, I’m super enthused about H.G. Nelson and Brad McEwan who will both infuse the series with a mix of athletic know-how and light-hearted humour.

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ENDS MIDNIGHT

Similar to the way Wipeout was filmed in Argentina, It’s A Knockout 2011 will be filmed in Kuala Lumpur. Presumably this is for insurance/WH&S reasons. It’s a shame that it won’t be filmed locally as an enthusiastic audience supporting their state of choice was a big part of the appeal of the original series, but it’ll be interesting to see what the production company Spring do to compensate for that.

Hopefully the return of IAK will lead to the original series being repeated somewhere on the schedule. it’d be great to see old episodes of that show appear on TV once again. Surely it’d play reasonably well dumped on a weekend afternoon on one of the multichannels.

The return of It’s A Knockout is certainly welcome and it enthuses me a heck of a lot more than a Big Brother return. With a strong dose of nostalgia for the format and co-hosts that are both charming and well-suited to a show like this, It’s A Knockout 2011 should prove to be a fun addition to TV over the summer season.