A lot of entertainment is just, well… entertainment. A movie; a TV sitcom; a band, live in concert. Nothing wrong with that, of course; it does what it says on the box.
But other types of entertainment double up as both amusements and betting diversions. Sport, for instance, entertains with the element of competition, which is perhaps why viewers like to bet on the outcome for added zing.
The same applies to award shows, reality TV series, and even the plots of high-concept dramas. The Oscars, the Grammys, the Emmys, the Tonys; cooking shows, survival shows, talent shows, weight-loss shows; The Sopranos, The Tudors, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead: what they all have in common is winners and losers.
Viewers never know in advance who will be the winners and who the losers, though, and that is what makes them all worth a punt.
You can find entertainment betting options, increasingly, as options on general sports betting sites. The easiest bets to place are straight bets on a winner. You can weigh up the year’s Emmy contenders, check out the betting odds on the Grammys, or pick your early TopChef winner as the first episode of the season airs. Which character do you reckon will survive unscathed to the end of this season of your favourite must-watch blockbuster?
Bookmakers on different betting sites will weigh up all the contenders according to their own algorithms, offering different odds on each one. Choose the right long shot and see it come off, and you add an extra fillip to your enjoyment of the show. Make a regular night of it with friends, and you can throw in some side bets against each other, too.
Entertainment betting will also offer you more complicated action, like spread betting and over-under bets. How much will a movie make in its opening weekend? If it bombs, how close to making back its budget will it come? How many members of the tribe will vote against the next person ejected from Survivor?
Punters can bet over/under on different spreads at different odds, adding a bit more intensity to following the results. The thing to remember is: when it comes to picking Grammy winners, or Sopranos characters who survive, or dogged reality-show contenders, viewers who enjoy these shows may intuitively do better than the algorithms that set the odds.
Props Bets Gone Wild
If you’re betting for fun, it is always a giggle to spread around a few small wagers with almost no chance of coming off, but outrageous returns if you do get lucky. Entertainment betting lends itself to modest bets like this because there are so many outlandish props bets that can be dreamed up and offered by bookies.
Will Donald Trump’s Superbowl tweets have a typo? Which church will Kanye West do a show at next? Who will win if Taylor Swift goes to war with her manager? These are all actual props bets that people have placed. For every quirky what-if you can think of, there’s a betting site a will let you take a flutter on it.