Ask The Family (1969)

Concept and creative process

A television general knowledge contest based on the popular radio programme 'What Do You Know?'. Chairman Robert Robinson was the referee of 'Ask The Family', a quiz show contest of speed and wits between families from all over the UK, which ran from 1967 until 1984 under his continuous chairmanship. During 16 series it built up a devoted following. The designers’ concept was to show various impossibly mind-bending images, such as an Escher staircase and an impossible triangle, as well as ordinary household objects shot from unusual angles cut together in a montage. These images were shot on a rostrum camera and set to sitar music which reflected the current influence of Indian music and culture on the late 1960s music scene. The title sequence ended with a logo suggested by Rubens vase, another mind-bending image that could be viewed as a vase or two faces directly facing one another in profile, an image appropriate for a quiz show. The logo was not used for subsequent series but did reappear in the one-off 1999 revival of 'Ask the Family', in neon outline as part of the set decoration.