Betting On TV Shows, Movies & Special Events: A Complete Guide

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For the most part, watching TV shows, movies, and special events is a passive activity. You sit down on your comfiest chair, curl up, and watch. With your chosen show concluded, you may venture onto online forums to argue about the latest plotlines or discuss the latest gossip, but this can be a circular experience that is as frustrating as it is enjoyable.

Perhaps in an effort to enhance their overall participation in their preferred TV show, movie, or special event many people choose to actively bet on outcomes. This is an intriguing prospect, and one that can provide an outlet for your show-related theories, ideas, and convictions. Over recent years, there has been an explosion in willingness to bet on the outcome of a TV show — and a few shows in particular have drawn intrigue in this regard.

Below, we have put together a guide to betting on the most popular TV shows and movies (well, one movie specifically). From betting on Game of Thrones to focusing on reality shows and betting on The Voice, we’ve tried to cover it all — read on to find out more…

James Bond

We’ll start with our solo movie focus: betting on the next James Bond. This has been a popular market for many years now, with thousands of bets placed and speculation rife, even before the departing actor has vacated the role. Daniel Craig has played the iconic spy since 2005; he decided to stay on longer than anticipated, but the next as-yet-untitled film will be his last.

Interestingly, the next James Bond odds tend to fluctuate hugely, suggesting that the rumour mill is not a particularly reliable option for kind of bet. A number of names have been floated in recent months, each of which have been the top choice by the bookies too — but only for a short while. As a result, betting for the next James Bond could be a trickier bet than you may initially expect.

Of the current crop of names, the bookies seem to be switching between favouring Idris Elba — who reignited interest with the following Tweet…

… and Tom Hardy, though the market changes so rapidly, it’s often hard to keep track of even the front-runners. For example, James Norton had long been a bookies favourite for the role, only to suddenly crash to 12/1 for little discernable reason.

So what can you do when the possibilities change so frequently, and even the actors get on board with inflating the speculation? Well, be cautious with James Bond betting. The actor who looks like a sure-thing one day may suddenly tumble the next, so always seek to bet responsibly if considering entering this market.

It is also worth noting that some bookmakers offer next James Bond odds that aren’t actually a specific actor at all, and these markets could well be worthy of consideration. For example, Ladbrokes are offering a simple “Any Female” offer for — at the time of writing — 12/1. This is worth keeping in mind, as many have long believed that iconic male characters should be portrayed by women. In 2017, that speculation became reality, when another multi-actor character, that of The Doctor in Doctor Who, cast Jodie Whittaker in the leading role. As a result, don’t rule out the possibility that the next James Bond may actually be portrayed by a woman rather than one of the much-discussed male actors who have been linked with the part thus far.

Love Island

It’s fair to assume that no one — not even the people who actually produce the show — expected Love Island to be such a huge success. The show was revamped a few years ago, transforming a tired concept that once featured celebrities pretending to be romantically interested in one another into a geninely unmissable summer spectacular. Sure, it’s possible to conclude that the interest has been more influenced by the fact that, well, there’s nothing much else on over the summer rather than the show itself being particularly notable, but there’s no denying that Love Island has been a story of huge success for the past few years.

As you would expect, bookmakers took note of this popularity and began to offer odds for Love Island with a particular focus on the eventual winners of the show. There’s no denying that this must have been an intriguing proposition for bookies and bettors alike; reality shows are all about perception, there’s no way of researching past form, and there are no helpful statistics to point the way.

While compiling Love Island betting odds may have been an unusual task for bookies, it’s one that managed with aplomb. From early in the series, bookies such as William Hill and Ladbrokes had Dani Dyer and Jack Fincham as the favourites to take the prize money home. This inkling proved to be absolutely accurate, so it looks as if bookmakers are just as capable of compiling odds even for the rather nebulous world of reality TV.

With the opportunity for Love Island betting concluded for another year, what can you expect if you are interested in a flutter on the 2019 series? Well, while it’s impossible to speculate on contestants (especially given they haven’t even be chosen yet), we can conclude that if you want to bet on Love Island, you should be able to. The show has set itself up as the powerhouse TV event of the summer, and this popularity looks to continue for a few years yet. If you’re a fan and want to try betting on the 2019 series, then there will almost certainly be a number of bookmakers willing to offer you Love Island odds that allow you to do just that.

Eurovision

The Eurovision Song Contest is a special-event-come-TV show that delights Europe and baffles the rest of the world and, well, it’s kinda weird. Sometimes, it’s really weird, as summed up by the incomparable Petra and Mans:

If you are contemplating betting the Eurovision Song Contest, you have to get the Eurovision Song Contest. The competition has evolved over recent years from a focus on outstanding musical acts and more on, well, a continent having a bit of fun — and what fun it has been.

The 2018 Eurovision Song Contest was won but Israel with a song dubbed an “anthem for the #metoo” era. While appreciating this song, there’s no denying that other countries with better songs (Austria) and better performances (Denmark) should have won, and — sorry, we momentarily forgot our personal opinions don’t come into this, even though Denmark were clearly robbed (Editor — we get it. Also, stop sending me emails ranting about this.) Notably, the Israeli entry was actually tipped as a potential winner in 2018, which suggests that bookies know what to look for when anticipating the popularity of the entries for Eurovision, so is there any point on betting on the contest?

Sure there is. Betting on Eurovision Song Contest odds is another version of the sweepstakes we’re all forced to participate in and subsequently despair of when we, once again, draw consistent under-performers France. Eurovision is all about fun, and having a punt on the end result could help to enhance your own enjoyment of the spectacle. While the bookies got it right last time out, the Eurovision Song Contest is famed for surprise victories, so you never know if the Eurovision tips 2018 will emulate the success of 2018. It may be helpful to watch the qualifying rounds in the week leading up to the big night, as these can give an insight into the performances that are dazzling the crowds.

Oh, and if you are planning on betting on the Eurovision Song Contest to support the UK, it’s worth noting that 2019 be the first year the UK has competed while not a member of the European Union. As a result, betting on the UK could be a difficult proposition: expect booing, nil points, and an all-round unpleasant experiences for the Brits — love may have shone a light the last time the UK triumphed at Eurovision, but we can largely expect barely-concealed animosity this time out.

Game of Thrones

The producers of Game Of Thrones chose to make 2018 a fallow year in the series, which has led to a lack of opportunities for betting on Game of Thrones. However, the series will return for its seventh — and final — season in 2019. As a result, fans of the show have had to turn to online forums to discuss the show, and fan theories and rumours of the events on the set have abounded.

If you have found yourself enthralled by the world of Westeros over the past six seasons, betting on the final season of Game of Thrones is well worth considering. The show has long established a reputation of as doing the unthinkable, beginning with the — spoiler alert — execution of the seeming protagonist, Ned Stark, in season one. However, in recent years, this do-anything attitude has floundered somewhat, as a core set of characters were clearly destined to make the final season. If there was one bet taking over the past two seasons, it’s that the core cast would survive for the final showdown.

However, season seven’s inevitable no-holds-barred approach awaits Daenerys, Jon, Jaime, Cersei, and Arya — they no longer need to be protected, and everyone is in peril. The final season of any show is always full of twists and turns, but a show famed for its twists and turns, with nothing left to lose? It could be a bloodbath, and betting on Game of Thrones “who dies” markets should spark to life as soon as the show returns. George RR Martin, the creator of the A Song of Ice and Fire novels that are based on, has said his vision for the final epilogue is a landscape of graves shrouded in mist, so betting on a significant character dying could be well worth considering.

Then there is the outcome of the show itself, with numerous plotlines needing to be unravelled, which adds an extra element of intrigue for those looking to experience betting on Game of Thrones. Who will emerge as ruler of Westeros? Will the Night’s King attack reach King’s Landing? Just how disgusted will Dany and Jon be when they realise they’re related? Will there ever be a character so delightfully engaging as Oberyn Martell? Okay, so you can’t bet on the last two (because one presumes the answers will be very and absolutely not, never in a million years) but look out for interesting betting markets that may speculate on the overall plotlines rather than the survival of each character. With the final season still many months away, you may struggle to find Game of Thrones odds and markets at this point in time but that’s sure to change as the seventh season approaches. In the meantime, it’s worth keeping pace with fan theories and rumours on forums and social media — and, er, watching a tribute to Oberyn Martell, because… well, why not?

Gone but not forgotten, Viper.

The X Factor

Shocking as it may seem, there are children aged 14 who have never lived in a world where The X Factor is not a permanent fixture in autumn TV schedules. Yes, The X Factor may have fallen from grace in recent years — overtaken as the Sunday night prime-time show by perennial favourite, Strictly Come Dancing — but the show trundles on, promising fame and fortune to singers.

As a result, The X Factor remains a TV show with plenty of focus in terms of betting. This is perhaps due to the fact that the show, for the most part, is fairly predictable. The past 14 years of programming has taught the viewers to spot the contestants that the producers think has potential; throw in a “journey”, and you can be fairly certain of — at the very least — a place in the final for the contestant in question. This predictability has cost The X Factor in terms of viewership, but it’s actually of benefit to anyone who is considering X Factor betting; with a little experience of the show, you’ll soon be able to spot the contestants who are on a route to… well… it’s unlikely it’ll be fame and fortune, but they could win the show.

Betting markets for The X Factor pick-up around the quarter final stages as, with the “comedy” contestants eliminated, the competition truly begins to resemble more of a singing contest. As a result, it’s at the quarter-final stages — which usually take place around the end of November — that you may want to consider looking for X Factor odds. This will be simple enough to do, as most national newspapers will print write-ups of the bookies who are offering odds, with a focus on the overall X Factor odds on winner.

There is, however, an exception to the “the quarter finals onwards are what matters” rule as mentioned above. In 2011, at the start of the live shows, girlband Little Mix were given odds of 30-1 to win. This seemed sensible on behalf of bookmakers as, at that point, no group — not even One Direction — had managed to win the show, and a girlband seemed even less likely to triumph. However, over the weeks, Little Mix put in show-stopping performance after show-stopping performance, and eventually clinched the crown — leaving bookies facing a £1 million loss to bettors who had bet on Little Mix winning at the starting odds of 30-1. While an isolated case — the bookies tend to get it right more often than not when it comes to X Factor betting markets — it may be worth considering an assessment of the initial line-up prior to the start of the live shows. If there’s a lot of talk about an act on social media, as there was with Little Mix, then this could suggest that an upset is on the cards.

The Voice

It’s The X Factor! But with, er, spinning chairs… because… that makes a difference?

Despite its lofty claims to be a focus on vocal talent only, The Voice has never really hit the right note with the viewing public. The show was originally broadcast on BBC1 but, after years of unimpressive viewing figures due to the presence of Ricky Wilson — erm… sorry, we’ll try that again: after years of unimpressive viewing figures due to the general public’s malaise for singing shows, The Voice moved to ITV, where it continued to… well… do alright.

Okay, so we’re being unnecessarily harsh (except on Ricky Wilson; that shade is 100% deserved). The Voice is fine. It does well in the ratings for its time-slot. It benefits from the fact ITV are choosing to broadcast it during the spring, when there’s precious little else on TV. In addition, it’s created incredible musical acts such as… er… we’ll get back to you on that, because realistically…

Okay! Take three: rather than talking about the show, we’ll talk about the betting opportunities. One of the upsides of betting on The Voice is that the show simply isn’t that popular on a national level, with averages of around 6 million viewers. This can mean the bookies aren’t quite as likely to judge the mood of the public well, as there is simply less information and discussion surrounding the show.

This proved to be the case with the 2018 series, when Donel Mangena was named as the bookies top pick to win the show… which he promptly didn’t, with Ruti Olajugbagbe ultimately taking the crown. Admittedly, the Olajugbagbe was the bookies second favourite, but odds of 17/20 would have made this an interesting bet if you had spotted the possibility and chosen to seek out The Voice odds prior to the final. Whether or not the bookies will similarly judge the public mood when compiling their picks for The Voice betting odds 2018 remains to be seen, but if you have a knack for noticing the way the public is leaning, betting on The Voice could well be worth considering.

Which Bookmakers Provide TV Show, Movie, and Special Events Betting Markets?

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Most of them. Brands such as William Hill, Ladbrokes, Coral, and many more besides have all been known to feature TV betting markets, so you shouldn’t have a problem finding a home if you’re looking to bet on any of the TV shows above.

We chose to feature the shows above because we know that they are featured by bookies. This is due, in no small part, to their popularity. If a show is popular, demanding a focus from the general public, then you can usually expect the bookies to take note and begin offering odds. As a result, if you’re looking into the possibility of betting on Love Island or betting on Game of Thrones, you should have plenty of options. Just remember to do your research into these markets and compare odds between different providers — although it’s TV rather than sports betting, the overall concept is much the same: you want good odds, from a safe and reliable provider. If you can keep that in mind, then you should be able to enjoy your TV, movie, and special event betting experience.

Tips For Betting On TV Shows, Movies, and Special Events

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  • Unlike with sports betting, research can only be of so much use when betting on TV shows, movies, and special events. You should read fan theories and newspaper speculation, but keep in mind the potential for false rumours is high. Be cautious at all times.
  • For plotted TV shows, such as Game of Thrones, pay attention to fan speculation over cast speculation. The cast will usually be involved in efforts to throw fans off the scent, and Lena Headey — the magnificent/sociopathic Cersei Lannister — is particularly known for using Instagram to ruffle fans feathers and send speculation flying.
  • Similar applies to reality TV shows; don’t trust the contestants posts on social media, as they may also be trying to create speculation and press inches rather than actually reporting reality.
  • Enjoy yourself! TV shows, movies, and special events such as Eurovision are wonderful in and of themselves, so ensure you enjoy your better as an enhancement to the viewing enjoyment, rather than a replacement for it.
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