1975 eSports (Crackerjack)

Photo of Ed "Stewpot" Stewart moderating a game of televised football-pong super-imposed over two children facing one another with hands on their game paddle controls.

eSports slightly bemuses me in some ways as I'd rather play than watch, but it's certainly coming of age. Here it is, perhaps at it's birth, in 1975 on the UK Children's television programme, Crackerjack in the form of competitive Football-Pong (about 3 and a half minutes in).

Via: Jonathan Beales on Twitter


1 Responses to '1975 eSports (Crackerjack)'

  1. # Blogger OneSwitch.org.uk

    Bit more on this here:


    Via Damon Rose:


    Last night, while searching on the web, I came across some pages about the long running children's TV programme Crackerjack on the BBC's Cult website. Fantastically you can click and view some old clips from when Ed (Stewpot) Stewart was presenting it in the 1970s.

    Crackerball is a game that they used to play on Crackerjack three decades ago. For retro computer game fans, it's very much like the classic Pong. (note: when you click on the link it may take a few seconds before the video clip starts playing but it's worth it)

    In this clip we see contestants Matthew and Tracey fighting it out on the video game. But the beautiful moment comes before the match begins ... and it reminds you so much how we've changed since those days and how the BBC has changed when Ed announces the following to the camera and the contestants:

    "Don't forget if you're watching us in hospital and you've sent us a card - we've got loads of cards in the Stewpot here - every time either of you scores a goal we'll take a name out and read out that name, all right? And you'll be receiving a special prize."

    The video game starts. Matthew and Tracey jiggle away on their control pads. Primitive low-graphic balls and lines flick across the screen of this one level pre Space Invaders game. Each time a player hits the ball a basic computer beep sounds - but the studio audience seem to be quite excited - it was high tech at the time.

    Yay!!! Tracey scores a goal and Ed turns his attention, if briefly, back to the sick children of Britain watching on the TV sets in the dayroom of their ward.
    "Let's see the name out of the Stewpot, shall we? Da-da-da-da ... Robert Nois of Upper St John's General Hospital, Tremona Road, Shirley in Southampton. A prize on its way to you, Robert."  

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