Countdown contestant spells 'HENTAI' - meaning sexually explicit anime

Rachel Riley on Countdown (Channel 4)

A Countdown contestant is being praised by viewers for winning a round of the Channel 4 gameshow by spelling the word "hentai".

From the nine-letter jumble of "TINEYATPH", Marwan Riach found the six-letter word, which refers to a genre of sexually explicit anime or manga.

Riach's opponent, Tom Silverlock, was only able to find the five-letter word "patty".

At the end of the 30-second countdown, Riach hesitantly offered the word as his best answer, saying: "Uh, hentai?"

Contestant Marwan Riach hesitantly offered up the six-letter word (Channel 4)

Susie Dent in Dictionary Corner responded: "Hentai is brilliant."

Dent went on to define hentai as "a subgenre of a Japanese anime or manga", but decided not to mention that it specifically refers to pornographic material.

The show's celebrity guest Suzi Perry then said they could have had the word "patient" for seven points.

Susie Dent and guest Suzi Perry on Countdown (Channel 4)

Thethe Oxford Dictionary defines hentai as "a subgenre of the Japanese genres of manga and anime, characterised by overtly sexualised characters and sexually explicit images and plots".

However, hentai is not actually a genre of media, and instead originates from the words hentai seiyoku sha, which refers to any type of perverse or bizarre sexual desire or act.

Viewers have since been sharing their amusement on social media.

One viewer tweeted: "Big props to the guy on #Countdown who just (very nervously!) threw out "Hentai" as a winning word."

While another wrote: "The presenters handled the word HENTAI with aplomb on Countdown today when it came up. Don't think being more specific than "a genre of Manga" would've gone down too well with the mid-afternoon demographic..."

Despite winning the round in style, Riach ended up losing the show to Silverlock, finishing 20 points behind him.

- This article first appeared on Yahoo

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