On Wednesday the PartyPoker.com- sponsored show 'The Poker Den: The Big Game' began its eight-week run on Channel Five in the U.K. The show's format resembles that of American shows like 'Cash Poker' and 'High Stakes Poker,' although with the twist of having had all eight episodes filmed during a single 24-hour continuous cash game. Featured players include Phil Hellmuth, Dave 'Devilfish' Ulliott, Team PokerNews Captain Tony G, Liz Lieu, Juha Helppi, Kenna 'Cowboy' James, and Roland de Wolfe.
Filming was conducted back in March at the Poker Den in east London, with the game taking place only one day removed from the completion of 'Premier League Poker,' where several of the same players participated. According to a PartyPoker.com spokesman, "some of the stars were still on tilt from that tournament," perhaps leading to multiple instances of players exchanging insults along with the chips. Conflicts between Poker Den regulars and certain name players like Tony G over seats at the table added to the game's already tense atmosphere. The length of the game "sapped the energy from a lot of the players," said the spokesman. "You see them laid bare and go on tilt so much that sometimes watching is uncomfortable."
As always, Hellmuth commands much attention. By his own report, Hellmuth did not fare well, and was quoted afterwards calling the marathon session one of the "spookiest" games in which he's ever been involved. "I don't remember a time when I spent twelve hours at the table without winning a significant pot," added Hellmuth. Those who enjoy watching the 'Poker Brat' suffer through trying moments — such as witnessed by American audiences recently on 'Poker After Dark' — will likely be satisfied by his Poker Den performance.
Jesse May, the U.K.'s "Voice of Poker," leads the commentary for the entire session, with Irish poker pro Padraig Parkinson adding humor and insight.