Why did Anne Robinson quit The Weakest Link?

Countdown’s Rachel Riley quizzed on ‘feud’ with Anne Robinson

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Anne Robinson was a constant of TV for countless years, as viewers knew one thing they could rely on was the so-called Queen of Mean fronting the quiz show The Weakest Link. However, that changed back in 2011 when Robinson made the abrupt decision to bring her tenure on the programme to an end. Being as irreplaceable as Robinson was, the BBC show took eight years to return with Romesh Ranganathan as host. 

Why did Anne Robinson quit The Weakest Link?

 Robinson, 77, hosted over 1,600 episodes of The Weakest Link between 2000 and 2012.

Her tenure earned her an infamous reputation as the presenter that takes no prisoners.

Best known for her stern demeanour and no-nonsense attitude, audiences loved her for her ruthless eliminations on the show.

However, all good things come to an end, as after 11 years leading the programme, Robinson made the decision to leave. 

Speaking to the BBC back in 2011, Robinson explained that it was a “hard decision,” and that her time on the show had “been superb”.

“I’ll miss it,” Robinson continued, adding: “If there’s anything about longevity in television, it’s about knowing what to take and what to turn down, and what to stop.

“It’s often about what not to do anymore. And I just simply haven’t got time to do the book.”

Following Robinson’s announcement, her final season aired in 2012, bringing one of TV’s most iconic quiz shows to an end.

At the time, there were rumours Robinson left the programme due to her pay being cut in half.

However, the presenter denied this, explaining that “my fee wasn’t cut”.

“I originally said I would do [the programme for] 10 years. I did a year more than I intended to. I think 11 years is more than enough.”

The show eventually returned in 2020 was Romesh Ranganathan as the host, though he has been clear about avoiding Robinson’s style of presenting.

Speaking to Express.co.uk and other outlets, Ranganathan explained: “There are certain things that Anne did that were textbook her.

“So I made sure I didn’t do them. You want to do it in your own way.”

Today, Robinson is still a regular on television, though she has moved away from the BBC and over to Channel 4.

Now she headlines Countdown, working closely with Rachel Riley and lexicographer Susie Dent.

However, it was recently reported that there was a feud between the long-standing hosts and Robinson, who only recently took over presenter duties.

Riley finally clarified the situation on a recent episode of Lorraine, saying she is “not the cuddliest person in the world”.

However, Riley made it clear that she was fine with the change of presenting style, adding “it’s just a different show now, she’s making it her own”.

The Weakest Link is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

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