Derby Dead Pool

The online competition to guess which famous people won't make it to the end of the current year. If they're elderly, ill, or just live a high-risk lifestyle, stick 'em in your team, and for each one whose death you correctly predict, you'll score points. DDP was dreamt up in Derby, England (hence the name...) by Big-Iain back in 1996, then was run from 2003 to 2007 by Siegfried Baboon and Rude Kid. From 2008 to 2009, it was run by Octopus of Odstock, and from 2010 The Man in Black. 2016 marks the Twentieth Anniversary!

Latest Stiffs: 4th August 2016 by The Man in Black

The DDP Olympic standard continues...

More fun and games at the DDP as the race to be champion hots up... First we have Dr K@te Gr@nger. After being diagnosed with terminal cancer, Dr Gr@nger raised over £250,000 and remained a tireless defender of the NHS, writing to Health Minister Jeremy Hunt, which gained much publicity. She died aged just 34. Gr@nger is the 9th hit in the Drop 40 with David Quantick's Showbiz Pals among the swathe of teams choosing her, gaining a record 16th hit in the process.
You'd think therefore that the current champ would have an unassailable lead at the top, but not in this most remarkable of years for celebrity death. Steve LaTourette was a moderate Republican congessman from Ohio before succumbing to pancreatic cancer aged 62. He was a hit for 4 teams and a 15th for Heading Nowhere who moves into 2nd place just two points behind the leader. Another bit of top end business comes in the form of Suzanne Wright. Wright was co-founder of the Autism Speaks advocacy group and died from pancreatic cancer aged 69. She was unique (and 15th!) hit for Thomas Jefferson Survives, who keeps in touch with the leaders in 4th place. Honorable mentions also for Golden Slumbers and Pan Breed, both in joint 5th with 129 points, a total that would have easily won every other Derby Dead Pool in History...

[Scorecard] (Gr@nger) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] (70 teams) = 10pts [Joker](7 teams) = 20pts
[Scorecard] (LaTourette) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] (4 teams) = 8pts
[Scorecard] (Wright) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 11pts

Mrs Mangel left flat

Vivean Gray was born in Cleethorpes but later emigrated to Australia where she forged an acting career there. Gray made notable appearances in popular TV shows 'The Sullivans' and 'Prisoner Cell Block H'. But she'll be forever known as Ramsay Street's resident gossip Mrs Mangel in 'Neighbours'. Gray was 92 and a hit for 4 teams. Ripper!
Seymour Papert was a South Africa-born expert in computers who developed systems that would enable children to learn code, working closely with toy giants Lego in creating innovative ways in which children could "learn through play" yadda yadda. Papert was 88 aged 85, a unique hit for Freaks And Geeks, who could be a theme team, thinking about it... Marni Nixon was one of Hollywood's unsung heroes, ironically through singing. She acted as the singing "voice" for actresses Audrey Hepburn in 'My Fair Lady' and for Natalie Wood in 'West Side Story' amongst others. Funnily enough Nixon's only on-screen singing was as a nun in 'The Sound of Music', the lead Julie Andrews would have required no such help! Nixon was 86 and a unique hit for theme team Pop Goes The Pop Star.

[Scorecard] (Gray) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] (4 teams) = 8pts
[Scorecard] (Papert) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 9pts
[Scorecard] (Nixon) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 9pts

Thorbjörn Fälldin down

Thorbjörn Fälldin was the Swedish leader of the Centre Party, who finally usurped the ruling Social Democrats in 1976. Bar a brief interlude, Fälldin was Prime Minister until 1982 when he was defeated by Olof Palme. Fälldin was 90 and a unique hit for veteran team Crossing The Styx.. Earlier I mentioned Seymour Papert and so we have another member of the famous Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Robert Fano helped develop time-sharing computer systems, paving the way for the wider use of personal computers as well as data-compression which would be later put to use in HD televisions and the like. Fano was 98 and a unique hit for another DDP regular, Inquilinekea/Simfish who get an Unlucky 13th bonus into the bargain... In recent weeks I have dropped a few hints regarding possible changes for the 2017 competition. I have comcluded that I do not have the time (or frankly the progamming skills) to enact the changes I have envisioned for the main competition, at least at the present. However, following a few experiments, I may well push ahead with plans to devolve the Theme Team League from the DDP so it has it's own rules and points system from next year. I'll keep you posted with developments in due course...

[Scorecard] (Fälldin) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 8pts
[Scorecard] (Fano) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] + [Unlucky Thirteen] = 10pts
Latest Stiffs: 20th July 2016 by The Man in Black
[Picture of Happy Days]

Rock around the coffin...

No more Happy Days for Marshall

The Man In Black returns from his summer holiday just as things are starting to hot up in the DDP race... Garry Marshall was a US TV producer-cum Hollywood film director. His first big hit was the TV version of the Neil Simon play and film 'The Odd Couple', featuring Tony Randall and Jack Klugman as the sparring flatmates Felix and Oscar. He followed this up one of the defining TV hits of the 1970s, despite being initially set in the 1950s, 'Happy Days', which launched the careers of the likes of Ron Howard and Henry Winkler. Marshall then turned to Hollywood, scoring a massive hit in 1990 with 'Pretty Woman', which propelled Julia Roberts to superstardom. Marshall, whose sister Penny also had a successful directing career, continued working until very recently so his death from pneumonia aged 81 was somewhat unexpected but not by Spongebob's Pet Snail who gets a unique hit.

[Scorecard] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 9pts

Bonnie's Brown bread

June was a relatively quiet month, with the exception of the massive hit of Muhammad Ali. But recent hits have made the battle for DDP supremacy reminiscent of Ali's epic battles with Joe Frazier. The big two contenders, David Quantick's Showbiz Pals and The Living End have been trading hit after hit, to the point where they might very well run out of picks! Bonnie Brown was part of the sibling country trio The Browns who were key in the development of the "Nashville Sound" in the 1950s. Jim Ed, Maxine and Bonnie enjoyed a number of hits before breaking up in 1968. Bonnie died aged 77 and was a hit for several teams including The Living End, who curiously also successfully picked her brother last year. Péter Esterházy was a Hungarian writer of aristocratic background, whose part-autobiographical 2000 novel 'Celestial Harmonies' was a critical hit. He died aged 66 from pancreatic cancer, with The Living End and DQSP scoring along with 3rd placed Thomas Jefferson Survives who remains in touch. Before all that, the reigning champion bagged another hit. Abdul Sattar Edhi was a Gujarati philanthropist who settled in Pakistan after partition in 1947. The Edhi Foundation set up a number of clinics helping the poor, the elderly and the sick. Edhi died aged 88 or so, with three teams including DQSP scoring. Altogether, this means that The Living End and David Quantick's Showbiz Pals have an incredible 15 hits so far this year, equalling the all-time record from 2013. However, there's still over 5 months to go and considering that only 20 picks are allowed per team, this suggests a somewhat slower but tense climax to an amazing competition...

[Scorecard] (Brown) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] = 7pts [Joker] (1 team) = 14pts
[Scorecard] (Esterházy) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] (12 teams) = 8pts
[Scorecard] (Edhi) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] (3 teams) = 6pts

Radu stick Beligan?

I think I'll stick him here! Radu Beligan was a veteran Romanian actor who continued treading the boards until well into his nineties in a career that lasted nearly 80 years. He died aged 97 and was a unique hit for Obituarynotice. A DDP update isn't a DDP update without a couple of "oldies" expiring. Goldie Michelson was an American supercentenarian, the oldest in the States, although she was actually born in Russia, over a decade before the Revolution! She died aged 113, a unique hit for Falling Off The Perch. And just as Britain's Gladys Hooper was moving up the World's Oldest table, she decided to keep her appointment wth the Grim Reaper. Ther former concert pianist was Britain's oldest person until her death also at 113. A more popular hit than Michelson with 12 teams.

[Scorecard] (Beligan) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 8pts
[Scorecard] (Stigwood) [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 6pts
[Scorecard] (Hooper) [Points] [Points] [Points] (12 teams) = 3pts

Goran's had enough of it

Another recurring theme in DDP is of sick war criminals. Goran Hadžic became the head of the short-lived Serbian-Croat Krajina republic in 1992 in an attempt to head off Croatia's breakaway from the former Yugoslavia. It ultimately failed but not without considerable bloodshed, with Hadžic accused of carrying out various atrocities. He died aged 57 awaiting trial after being captured five years ago. Five of the teams bubbling under score vital points. Now a couple of uniques. William Lucas was a veteran actor, best recognised for his role of Dr Gordon in the short-running but popular 1970s childrens series 'Black Beauty'. Lucas was 91 and a unique hit for theme team The Gallifrey Regeneration Game as chosen on the basis of his appearance in the 'Doctor Who' serial 'Frontios', which Lucas attained at short notice when the original choice for the role of Range, Peter Arne, was murdered in 1983!. Cartoonist Frank Dickens created the tubby, bowler-hatted, downtrodden office clerk 'Bristow' for the Evening Standard in 1962, the daily comic strip running continuously for 41 years. Dickens would get up early on the Monday, write and draw the cartoons for the week, send them off and then go down the pub. I want to be a cartoonist! Dickens was 84 and a unique hit for cartoonist theme team Poisoned Pens.

[Scorecard] (Hadžic) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] (5 teams) = 9pts
[Scorecard] (Lucas) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 8pts
[Scorecard] (Dickens) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 9pts
[Scorecard] (King) [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] [Points] + [Unique] = 9pts

List of the Lost - Latest Entrants

Eudoxie Baboul, M@rk Nurth3n, J@ck W3ll5, Carl Falck, Maj Axelsson, Piet De Jong

List of the Missed - Latest Entrants

Alan Vega, J. T. McNamara, Poornima Arvind Pakvasa

Player of the Month - June

It's Grim Up North - 16 points

Latest News

So there we have it: It's Clinton vs Trump for the White House. God help us all... The Theme Team League is updated for July with Shameless' lead slightly cut...

Message to all current competitors: There will be no more regular emails except in certain circumstances, such as rules and invitation to next year's competition.

Further Information
Derby Dead Pool is hosted by The Man In Black with contributions from Big-Iain, Rude Kid, Siegfried Baboon, Octopus of Odstock, WEP 2.0 - World's Eternity Prophet Reloaded, The Grey Horde, Thomas Jefferson Survives, Bibliogryphon, David Quantick's Showbiz Pals, Dickie's Gone the Way of the Dinosaurs & The End Of The World As We Know It

[DDP 2016]