Anne Robinson (born September 26, 1944 in Merseyside, England) is an English television presenter and TV host who is most famous for hosting the BBC game show The Weakest Link. She also hosted the United States NBC primetime version of the show, which has since ceased production.
Robinson is of Irish Catholic descent, and attended a Roman Catholic Girls School in Merseyside. Her mother, also named Anne Josephine Robinson, was a successful agricultural businesswoman from Ireland.
Robinson's harsh, "dominatrix" persona and monotone voice became infamous on The Weakest Link. Her repeated utterance, "You are the weakest linkâ€”goodbye!" became a catchphrase in 2001. Some even consider her treatment of contestants to be worse than Pop Idol and American Idol's Simon Cowell, who is also notorious for nasty comments.
She began her career as a journalist, and at one time worked for the late, controversial magnate, Robert Maxwell (whom she greatly admired) on the staff of the Daily Mirror. She began appearing on BBC television during the 1980s, on programmes such as Points of View and Watchdog. She also presented a weekly show on BBC Radio 2 on Saturday mornings, which ran from 1988 - 1993. She returned to the station briefly in 1996, sitting in for Jimmy Young on the Lunchtime slot for 2 weeks.
She caused a furor when she appeared on the comedy show Room 101 on March 5, 2001, and made derisive comments about Welsh people. The persona she adopts for the purposes of The Weakest Link is her own invention. Currently, she also hosts the BBC's outtakes programme, Outtake TV, and the BBC's interactive quiz, Test the Nation, with Philip Schofield.
In 2001 Robinson published her autobiography, Memoirs of an Unfit Mother, in which she describes her former drinking problem.
She has one child, a daughter, Emma Wilson (from her first marriage, which ended in divorce), who is a radio show host and has also hosted a game show in the U.S. on the Nickelodeon network.
Robinson appeared as "Anne Droid" in a 2005 episode of the BBC science fiction television series Doctor Who (episode title: Bad Wolf). In this episode, Robinson played a version of herself as the Weakest Link host, as a robotic who appeared to disintegrate the losers. She also hosted a satirical news-based chat show on BBC One called What's the Problem? with Anne Robinson, beginning in 2005.
Anne also was a guest presenter on the British children's magazine show Blue Peter during the 1970s.