From Nicki Minaj to Craig Revel Horwood: 10 of the Best TV Show Judges

From Nicki Minaj to Craig Revel Horwood: 10 of the Best TV Show Judges

Craig Revel Horwood
Come dance strictly

Supervillain in a pinch with a soft center: Revel Horwood’s reprimands are as crucial to the BBC’s annual dance performance as the fake tan and flammable leotards. “It was like watching a stork struck by lightning,” he said of Jeremy Vine’s jive. But his insults are invariably complemented by a loving “honey”, ensuring that no one actually hits him.

Monique Galetti
MasterChef / MasterChef: The Professionals

The former protégé of Michel Roux Jr can deflate a breath at 50 paces. Born in Samoa and raised in New Zealand, Galetti scares cooks the world over, her expressions ranging from resignation to revulsion, while her icy poise contrasts gloriously with the barking of presenters Gregg Wallace and John Torode.

Have her cake… Prue Leith. Photography: C4 / Love Productions / Mark Bourdillon / PA

Prue Leith
The Great British Cake

Few imagined that the Mary Berry National Treasure could be replaced on Bake Off without sending the sighting figures off a cliff. But they didn’t negotiate for Prue Leith. Big specs and even bigger necklaces are Leith’s business cards, as well as the bizarre social media scam (she once tweeted the show’s winner before the finale aired).

Nicki Minaj
American Idol

Few judges can compare to La Minaj on American Idol 12, where she regularly called contestants “little ladybug,” wowed with her outfits, and had spectacular beefs with fellow judge Mariah Carey. Minaj’s comments were also loaded with zingers. “I want to skin you and carry you,” she told a future pop star.

She’s a kitten, really… Nicole Scherzinger. Photographie : Dymond/Thames/Syco/Rex/Shutterstock

Nicole Scherzinger
The X factor

When the occasional Pussycat Doll first appeared on The X Factor in 2010, her comments – “Schamazing”; “You are that bomb-dot-com” – immediately entered the lexicon of TV shows. We also have to thank her for saving Rylan, who returned the favor by shedding snot and tears.

Val Garland

Garland is a supreme cosmetic in statement specs that worked with Lady Gaga and the Queen, and comes with a Miranda-from-The-Devil-Wears-Prada vibe. In Glow Up’s version of Bake Off’s Hollywood handshake, she salutes makeup triumphs with a satisfied exclamation of “ding dong!” “.

Margaret Mountford
The apprentice

A former lawyer, businesswoman, and “eyes and ears” of Sir Alan Sugar, Mountford wore a sympathetic air to Miss Marple who belied her deadly evaluations in the boardroom. During his five-year stay, there was no longer a formidable interrogator at the interview stage, his damning sentences instantly reducing interviewees to sweaty wrecks.

She told you: sew ... Esme Young.
She told you: sew… Esme Young. Photographie : Mark Bourdillon/BBC/Love Productions

Young Esme
The Great British Sewing Bee

Edna E mode of The Incredibles has come to life, Esme Young is an all-star costume designer, Central St Martins tutor and ruthless judge on Sewing Bee, whom she once appeared on with bottles of hand sanitizer as a necklace. Small, fierce, and focused on precision stitching, Young’s stitching is as crisp as her bob.

Michelle Face
Course de dragsters de RuPaul

A legend of the 1980s New York ballroom scene – she thinks Madonna stole her look – Face is a reality TV device, having appeared on Strictly Come Dancing, The X Factor and Celebrity Big Brother. But it was on Drag Race that she really shone, especially judging Night of 1,000 Michelle Faces, who saw her facing a parade of drag queens dressed like her.

Keith Brymer Jones
The large pottery throw

Keith loves pots. Keith also likes people who make pots; so much so that he cries ugly every time they make him a nice one. Master potter himself, Keith cries so much on The Great Pottery Throw Down that pots have to be shaped to catch his tears. Keith is deeply invested in his role as a pottery supplier and so are we.


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