15 of the rudest Countdown moments ever

Catriona Wightman
Photo credit: Channel 4

From Digital Spy

We all know that the best type of rudeness is unexpected rudeness. It's all very well hearing someone swear on Geordie Shore, but put a bit of naughtiness on the show our nan watches and it's suddenly all the funnier.

Thank goodness, then, for Countdown, which has a joyous tradition of being both a) very sedate and sensible, and b) making us snort when a rude word pops up. Here are just 15 of our favourites, ranked on shock factor:


Photo credit: Channel 4

Well at least it's in Latin.

17. U,D,F,C,K,E

Pfft. When we get rudie bits on Countdown, we don't want to have to work for them. But that was the case in this 2010 episode, which saw the contestants opting for "caged" and "faced" even though we all know what they really wanted to say - and they could have bagged an extra point. Don't wimp out, people.

16. FART

If you don't like a bit of toilet humour, you're reading the wrong article. Carol Vorderman can barely get the "T" out because she's laughing so hard, while Richard Whiteley is very pleased with the outcome: "We've waited 19 years for this."


What's better than a fart? Two extra letters to make it 'farted'… and a cute 8-year-old boy called Tanmay, who sniggers as he announces the glorious word he's found. "The youngest ever contestant and the first word he gets is 'farted'," Richard giggles.

14. PORN

Saucy. Des O'Connor's nonchalant face is completely brilliant, while Carol Vorderman looks momentarily embarrassed before being absolutely brilliant by warning: "Don't believe anything you see on the internet." (Even better: the YouTube comments pointing out that you can spell 'strap-on' and 'porn star' with the eventual letters.)

13. ARSE

Photo credit: Channel 4

SNIGGER. Arse is a great word, because it's both innately British and also sort of charmingly rude - just think of Father Jack. So when Rachel Riley popped it up on the board, we couldn't help but have a giggle.


The latest entry into Countdown's profanity books, this one should really be higher. 'Clit' is obviously very saucy. 'Clit tease' is even ruder. The only problem is that it doesn't quite get there. Still, a solid effort from the letters.


Photo credit: Channel 4

Erections seem to pop up quite regularly on Countdown (snigger) but it's always entertaining. Of course, as Channel 4 tweeted after one erection incident, it's "a construction term". That's not what we're thinking of though… and it's not what Rachel Riley was thinking about either.


Remember Tanmay of 'farted' fame? He's BACK. On a mission to snigger his way through Countdown like only an 8-year-old could, he proudly put forward "fannies" for an excellent seven points. Sure, Susie Dent might have tried to insist it wasn't rude because it refers to "fannying about", but come on. Let's be honest with each other here.


"Todger" might be our favourite ever word for a man's naughty bits. There is absolutely nothing sexy about it all, is there? So to get some todgers on Countdown was a real delight - especially as Nick Hewer appeared to not quite know what it meant ("Is it a sausage?").


Photo credit: Channel 4
Photo credit: Channel 4

Amazingly this one's come up twice in 2017 alone.


This isn't a completely classic Countdown blooper as the letters for 'minge' come out in the middle and no-one's actually mentioning it, but you just know that Rachel Riley's holding back a titter.


"Sluts" would have been a rude word. Add on the "Z" and it becomes even seedier, the sort of word you'd expect to see in a phone box advertising one of those chat lines.


Ah, "wanker". Again, what a pleasingly British insult (one that Americans use without realising quite how dirty it is). "Wanker" has actually come up more than once on Countdown, so this is just an example - it's spoilt somewhat by some nanny state beeping of Dave's triumph, but we're kind of in love with his rival Tom: "… I went for 'awaken'."


What's better than one wanker? Two wankers, of course! There was no holding back from 1991's contestants Gino and Lawrence, both of whom took the bull by the horns (as it were) to announce the naughty word they had discovered. Props especially to Gino, who sheepishly announced: "A pair of wankers." Gyles Brandreth was enjoying the fun too: "What is Richard Whiteley doing asking for a definition?"


Photo credit: Channel 4

Well, really. You'd think Susie Dent was higher minded, but…


Ooh, Myleene, you are awful. Ms Klass just couldn't quite resist the lure of "gobshite" - again, a spectacularly British insult - during a guest appearance on the show. "Perfectly respectable," Nick Hewer declared. We agree.


Photo credit: Channel 4

Where do we even start with this one? Semi would have been giggleworthy, but to make it an "itchy" one adds a whole extra layer of eww/hilarity. What's best about this one, though, is that it was actually the Countdown conundrum - not a blooper, or a rude contestant, or a surprise with the letters. They wanted this on screen… Countdown is as cheeky as we are! (The answer, FYI, is "mythicise".)

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