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
Posts Tagged With 'Linda Smith'
Creamguide's Pick of the Day
Mick McManus died this week, alas, and remember him this way with another outing for this absolutely brilliant documentary from just before Christmas about British wrestling at its earthiest. There are some hilarious bits in it, like Johnny Kincaid being told he had to pretend he was from Barbados even though he’d never been there, Klondike Kate reminiscing about the fishwives throwing foot-and-mouth-disease injections at her, an interviewee saying “excuse my language” after he’d said the obscene word “bum” and the fantastically good value Max “brother of Shirley” Crabtree, the big kahuna in the “sport” in its imperial phase, explaining how they came up with the concept of Big Daddy after Shirley complained to him that “me whole career’s gone to cock!”. Great stuff.
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Points of View
- In 'Grand Prix ', Tom says: "I always like the random shot of Jim Clark, named no less, halfway through. It’s like they think “Hey, we’ve got to have Jim in it,..."
- In 'McCloud', Applemask says: "Chief?"
- In 'Mann’s Best Friends', Applemask says: "Was the main character called “Ian Mann”?"
- In 'Man About the House', Applemask says: "“What’s on the box? Man About the House with Paula Wilcox”."
- In 'Make ‘Em Laugh', Applemask says: "Hey, fuck you, voiceover man, it was Harold who did the real work, and you know it, you pussy!"