tv characters who play lotto

Hijinks Ensue When People Play Lotto on TV

The lottery provides such a plethora of emotion, drama and excitement, it therefore comes as no surprise that it’s served as the central inspiration of movies, music, and even television shows. There are reality TV shows, syndicated shows, and even documentaries that all have at least one episode where a character has played the lottery. Usually, when a character (fictional or otherwise) decides to play lotto and wins a big prize, hijinks ensue as old friends and distant family come out of the woodwork. Navigating windfalls tends to be a bit trickier than imagined, which makes for good televised drama.

Winning Stories

One popular show that features the lottery called The Syndicate focuses on a different lottery syndicate each season, and what happens when each group wins the jackpot. The show first aired on BBC One in March 2012. The series originally only ran for three seasons, but in February, 2020 it was confirmed that the show would return for a fourth season. The first season of the show focuses on workmates in a small local supermarket who strike it rich, but they have secrets to hide and life altering medical news that they receive. Season two focuses on a group of hospital workers in a similar situation. Season three focuses on a syndicate that is part of the staff of a crumbling, yet stately home. In each season, secrets are revealed, rivals abound, and the drama builds as each character must come to terms with what the win means for them and how they will allow it to change their life.

Another great series that focuses on winning the lottery is At Home with the Braithwaites, which aired on ITV from January 2000 to April 2003, for a total of 26 episodes.. This series follows an every-day yet dysfunctional family from Leeds, with the matriarch striking it rich, but keeping it a secret from her family as long as possible. Once the secret is out, the family must learn how to live with their recent change in financial status, including all of the ups and downs associated with winning while still navigating tricky family situations, nosy neighbours, and more.

Reality Lottery

Even reality TV shows get in on the lottery action. One such show, My Lottery Dream Home, a show on the American channel HGTV, focuses on lottery winners and their search for a new home. Many of us have dreams of grandeur and fancy when it comes to our dream homes and the winners featured on this programme are no different. 

Another reality programme, Jackpots and Jinxes, airing in the UK, follows various winners through the ups and downs of winning a charitable gambling jackpot. Each episode features a different winner, where they were before their big win, and where they ended up afterwards. While this programme serves as a stark reminder that sometimes winning big isn’t quite the fantasy that it’s often made out to be, it still highlights plenty of winners who have used their windfalls to great advantage.

Winning a lottery draw or a big jackpot on lotto scratch cards is often a great source of drama, laughs, and hijinks, everything we expect from the best shows on the small screen. If you like to play lotto, these fictional and true stories could help you decide what to do with your own winnings -- or what not to do!

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