Have I Got News For You recently finished it’s landmark 50th series, and I’ve updated my spreadsheet on the gender balance of guests to include it.
The good news is that the show has continued with the BBC’s policy of having at least one woman as a guest on all panel shows, the bad news is that’s continued to be seen as both a maximum and a minimum with only one show in this run managing to feature two female guests (Sue Perkins and Roisin Conaty in episode 3). The show also managed to match the record of series 42 and 48 in having 4 women host during the run, but like those two previous runs, there were 6 men in the host’s seat for the rest of the series.
Overall, 36.67% of the guests in this series were women which is the equal third best (with series 42) the show’s ever achieved. The only ones with a higher overall percentage were the very first series in 1990 with 37.5% and series 48 in 2014 with 43.33%.
This series’ figures do manage to drag the overall percentage of female guests for the show’s history to 25.04% and a round 25% for guests. However, as I’m pretty sure that more than 1 in 4 of the British population are women, it’s still not very representative. To reach 50-50 in the hosts, it would only take around 12 series of having all the hosts be women, while to reach that for guests overall would take about another 28 series. Or they could be a little less ambitious, reverse the way it’s been so far and just aim for balance by series 100. How long do you think it would take for their to be complaints if the show only had 7 or 8 male guests per series?