STARTED off as an excuse for the old I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again team to keep on getting their I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again money while tied up with TV projects, courtesy of an improvised panel game made up of smut, innuendo and silliness. Original rotating line-up was therefore Graeme Garden, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Bill Oddie, Jo Kendall and John Cleese (with fellow ex-ISIRTA-er David Hatch as producer) being given silly things to do by former Joe Meek-produced Trad Jazz Boom hitmaker and irreverent host of BBC jazz shows Humphrey Lyttleton. Oddie, Kendall and Cleese dropped out after a series or two, making way for external witmongers Barry Cryer and Willie Rushton to make up the long-running classic four-man line-up. Key running themes developed during these early days, most of them still in use to today, include ritual humilation of town and townspeople playing host to that evening’s recording, baiting of resident pianist Colin Sell, ridiculing of comedy panel game contemporaries (“I heard a joke the other day, apparently Quote… Unquote has a Listen Again feature… good one, Nigel!”), ever more ambitious double entendres about scorekeeper The Lovely Samantha, and of course the games – some self-explanatory, others not explanatory in any way at all: Late Arrivals, The Uxbridge English Dictionary, Just A Minim, The Bad Tempered Clavier, Pick Up Song, Cow Lake Bomb, Swanee Kazoo, Letter Writing, Name That Barcode, Quote… Misquote, One Song To The Tune Of Another, Sound Charades (invariably introduced with an anecdote about ‘The Undisputed Grand Master Of The Game’ Lionel Blair), Film Club, Book Club, and of course Mornington Crescent, famed for its innumerable, impenetrable and fiercely guarded rules. Survived Rushton’s death in 1997 by bringing in clued-up guest contestants like Jack Dee, Linda Smith, Rob Brydon, Stephen Fry, Andy Hamilton, Sandi Toksvig, Jeremy Hardy, Tony Hawks, Harry Hill, Phill Jupitus and Ross Noble, bringing their own running jokes with them, and similarly countered Lyttleton’s recent passing with installation of HIGNFY-esque ‘guest hosts’, and long may it continue.Read More
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Creamguide's Pick of the Day
Well, here’s something we didn’t expect to be billing so soon because, as we mentioned last time, thanks to a couple of unbroadcastable episodes and a strike we’re now over a month ahead with this episode from 30th August. There are Proms scheduled for the next few Thursdays so surely this is the cue to give it a bit of a rest. Still, we’re actually pretty pleased to see this one turn up because it’s a good one, although it appears the studio debut of a very famous star is relegated to the late show. Of course, by this point ITV had long packed up so the show was enjoying its highest ever ratings, Secret Affair playing to an audience of around fifteen million people.
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Points of View
- In 'School book clubs', George White says: "Oh, Gyles Brandreth’s books, I remember because my school library simply had a lot of old Creamy books, Marmalade Atkins, Target WHo..."
- In 'Rentaghost', palimpsest says: "Despite the forced pantomime routines I persisted with it just for the main theme. An apparition quipped from deep inside a crypt."
- In 'Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds', Palimpsest says: "Something… Dogtanian being seduced by a lingerie wearing cat disguised as a monk? And a villain who kept slicing the..."
- In 'Heidi', Palimpsest says: "I’ve heard that this makes up most of the daytime scheduling on Austrian television. Heidi visits the cheese factory, Heidi visits the schnaps..."
- In 'The Children’s Film Foundation', John Harwood says: "“ZOO ROBBERY (1973) Yen-Sen the Yeti (OK, fine…) is stolen from London Zoo, and kids and WILLIAM “DR” HARTNELL..."