NIGHTTIME aerial shots of London in the opening titles? Check.
> Army of seasoned comedy writers that numbers well into double figures? Check.
> Popular host and a whooping audience? Check, check, checkity-check.
> So why, you may well ask, is The Nightly Show such a national embarrassment?
> This is, after all, ITV’s bold attempt to recreate the magic of America’s late-night topical talk shows, following the great traditions of Letterman and Leno.
> They’ve even shifted the News at Ten for it.
> Well, unfortunately, instead of taking its template from The Daily Show with Jon Stewart or James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke, it’s like a remake of Up Late With Rylan.
> The show that makes me think: “Bring back 10 O’Clock Live, all is forgiven.”
> But let’s try and be constructive here, because there are those in the industry who insist it needs time to bed in and find its feet, much like The One Show when it first started on shaky foundations.
> The fact there is no permanent host — each of the eight weeks will have a different anchor — is a fundamental error and makes the whole thing whiff of a clueless, temporary venture.
> Probably the most pressing issue ITV needs to address is that The Nightly Show has no idea what it wants to be.
> It’s part satire, but the targets are predictable (Katie Hopkins, Piers Morgan, Boris Johnson looking oafish in a photograph) and the opening Donald Trump jokes were unimaginative shots at his small hands and strange hair.
> The game show elements are shambolic and let down by both the crowbarred plugs for the prizes’ sponsors and a chronic lack of originality — week one’s host David Walliams and guest Rob Brydon haring around the studio in a quad-cycle was pure Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.
> The same can be said of a pie shop worker set up for a surprise from Martin Clunes.
> And don't get me started on contestants being given small electric shocks every time they press their buzzers. Big Brother has been doing that for years.
> Many of the segments simply go nowhere, to the point that Wednesday night ended with Walliams riding off on a camel, having fed penguins and played with a lemur, for absolutely no reason.
> It’s here that the programme’s lack of direction and unsuitable guest presenter form a crippling combination.
> The Nightly Show is asking Walliams to be chat show host, stand-up comedian and satirist all at once.
> He’s a talented entertainer, but he’s none of those. He simply doesn’t have the gravitas.
> And the names to follow, including Davina McCall and Gordon Ramsay, hardly suggest this will improve any time soon.
> Though I do hope they display less of a bruised ego than Walliams who was clearly jealous of anyone else daring to be funny and taking the limelight (Brydon).
> Add in inexplicable moments such as random internet clips of animals and Sex and the City’s Kim Cattrall being asked by an anonymous audience member: “Is breastmilk vegan?” and ITV has a dire mess on its hands.
> So when Walliams introduced a quick-fire questions round called Gone In 60 Seconds, a similar thought struck me about The Nightly Show.
> Gone In Eight Weeks. If they make it that far.
> The Voice’s Mo Adeniran.
> Broadchurch’s return to form
> Rob Beckett’s scything Celebs Go Dating narration.
> The format-free, TV Burp meets Shooting Stars brilliance of Harry Hill’s Alien Fun Capsule.
> BBC1’s The Replacement looking very much like 2017’s Doctor Foster.
> The Great British Benefits Handout’s Adam on a business call to Germany: “Gut morgen. Ich sprocken Angleterre?” German man on phone: “I don’t know what you mean.”
> And Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs to Sky News ahead of the Oscars: “No one knows what name is going to be read off the envelope, so it’s pretty spontaneous.” Because nothing says “spontaneity” like: “There’s a mistake. Moonlight won.”
> EastEnders’ absolutely deranged pancake race around the square.
> Celebs Go Dating monster Stephen Bear imagining the way to treat a woman on a first date is by drenching her in prosecco and smearing tiramisu on her face.
> Cretinous reject Kit Rice indignantly telling The Voice’s Jennifer Hudson: “You’ve made the wrong decision.”
> C4’s The 2,000,000 Calorie Buffet not turning out to be an introspective episode of Piers Morgan’s Life Stories.
> The Jump bothering to build up the drama of Bradley Wiggins’ ski cross race despite everyone knowing for two weeks he’s out injured.
> And Dawn French opening ITV kids talent show Little Big Shots: “It’s not a competition, there are no prizes, no judges…” And no point.