Gambling TV takes off
By Paul
For gamblers, information is key: without a deep appreciation of the rules and odds, you’re never going to break the bank. Sites such as our own and, along with magazines like Gambling Online are great sources of information, and now it seems, TV bosses are beginning to realise that gambling can make for good TV as well.

In the Chicago area, Casino Television debuted on WCIU-TV (Channel 26) last month, whereas Channel Four in the UK is now into its fifth series of Late Night Poker.

Casino Television airs on the first Saturday of each month at 1.30 am and repeats at 9.00 am. The 30 minute- feature based program covers all aspects of Chicago’s gaming scene, and is co-hosted by Jim Murphy, a veteran of the gaming industry.

'The focus of Casino Television will be to bring stories of interest to the better-than-average slots and table games players,' Murphy said. 'In addition to highlighting the gaming properties in the Chicago-area, I want to bring gaming fans the behind-the-scenes stories.'

The format is for the show to be hosted from a different Chicago-area casino each month. Aside from updates on new casino games and player strategies, there will be an emphasis on the culinary options that are available at the casinos.

'I want the show to be as informative and entertaining as possible. We’ll spotlight a 'Play of the Month' in which a gaming expert will detail a particular playing strategy at one of the games.'

Late Night Poker has proved to be addictive TV in the UK, with viewers able to see all the cards dealt via an onscreen legend and camera angles from beneath glass tables. A live commentary provides the gaming analysis.

The game is Texas Hold'em - the most dramatic form of poker. The tournament is spread over nine programmes, and forty nine players each bring £1500 ($2183)of their own money to the table. The winner walks away with £50,000 ($72,765).

According to the Daily Express, “It hardly seems the stuff of ratings heaven. But like the genesis of snooker on the telly three decades ago the green baize of Channel 4's Late Night Poker unquestionably has something about it. Poker, once the Wild West cardsharp's game, has become trendy.”

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