I haven’t done one of these in a while, so I might as well. Tonight’s episode features the first time in QI history that Jimmy Carr and Sean Lock perform in the same show. This is also the first appearance of a comedian I’ve not seen since Whose Line, and thankfully at that.
DISCLAIMER ABOUT TONIGHT’S EPISODE: A lot of people really don’t like this one because the common rumor is that Rory McGrath knew all the answers ahead of time, and essentially ‘hi-jacked’ the show, leading to a lot of people calling this one of the worst episodes of the series. I’m just going to see for myself.
Rory McGrath has gained a bit of weight since Whose Line. I never really liked him when he was on there, because he was never the funniest guy on the show, and I always liked the other Rory (Bremner) a bit better. And seeing as he’s basically going to be the goat of the audience tonight, I’m just gonna watch him implode.
All four buzzers are common noises, like fire alarms, sirens and lawnmowers. Alan’s is a parade of boos.
Stephen teases that tonight, there’s a question so difficult that he’ll give 100 points to anyone who gets it right. This is an interesting runner, one that I’m guessing Rory’s gonna take advantage of.
Rory basically sums up this episode by buzzing in, giving the correct answer, and saying to the audience, bashfully, ‘it isn’t very funny.’
Okay, all four guys do have some fun with the ‘having sex with the chicken’ question. This is mostly Alan and Sean, saying stuff about the egg-shaped girth and things.
Sean does have a nice twist to this, ‘or did they catch one in six men in Iowa, going’, and he does this intricate pantomime of a guy screwing a chicken.
Jimmy’s first line of the episode is ‘well, they definitely didn’t get a blowjob, obviously.” I like how all four guys are not beneath joking about having sex with a chicken.
Jimmy has a nice line about the decimal point guy and his black cock (rooster). “Did he do that purely for double-entendre? Like, have you seen my massive black cock?” Jimmy is still one of the funnier guys on this show.
Stephen, upon Rory’s THIRD correct answer of the night, turns to the rest of the panel, possibly dying on the inside, and goes “isn’t he good?” I think the fan theory about this one is that Rory had gotten all of the answers ahead of time, and it definitely shows.
The thing about Rory that especially vexes me is that he claims to be a comedian, and yet he’s not especially funny. He’s tried to make a few jokes this episode, and I haven’t laughed. On the ‘chevin’ question, Rory says, jokingly, that it’s a portmanteau word for ‘a Chav named Kevin’. And the part that made me laugh was the fact that it gained him a Klaxon.
Rory even admits that he’s forgotten about the forfeit. And the rules, evidently.
He also tries making another joke about a Chavender being the episode of Eastenders where there was a Chav, and says ‘but I’m not going to say that’. Thankfully, the elves give him a Klaxon anyway. Poetic justice, I guess.
Sean: “The thing about the koala is that they are the most law abiding of all the bears.”
Alan (after a pause): “They’re not bears.”
Alan: What’s your favorite bit of the koala? D’you like the little hands?
Jimmy (not missing a beat): “I like the cock.”
Sean: “I like the lips, toasted.”
Stephen asks “what’s the commonest metal in the human body?” Immediately, I’m thinking “ALAN, DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT SAY IRON!”
AND OF COURSE, Rory rings in with ‘calcium’, and not only gets it right, but gets a special alarm reading GENIUS. I mean, CHRIST! That’s NOT how this game works, man!
Jimmy does have a candidate for line of the episode once Rory gets his umpteenth point. Jimmy looks at Stephen and goes ‘this is a team game, right? I’m on his (Rory’s) team? Because we’re KILLING them!”
Alan: “Something’s 98 percent liquid, I know it…”
Jimmy: “Is it the sea?”
Okay, that’s brilliant.
But then Sean goes “No, the sea is only 4% water.” And Stephen, exasperated, defers to him.
Alan: “if you took all the fish, and the whales, out of the sea-”
Sean: “They’d die!”
Again, Sean, Jimmy and Alan are doing so well that I’m really wishing this episode had somebody like Phill or Bill, or even Rich, instead of Rory, who’s just ruining this game. Even Gyles Brandreth is going OH, FUCKING STOPPIT! And to be clear, I actually liked Gyles Brandreth. I thought that even if he knew a lot, he was still interesting, and it was because he was that smart, not because he looked up all the answers the night before. Gyles is a great person. Rory’s just a twat.
Jimmy even gets respect points for doing a Stephen Wright joke: “Imagine how deep the ocean would be if there weren’t sponges.”
YAAAAAAY, RORY GETS ANOTHER KLAXON! I know, he’s still gonna win, but I DON’T CARE!!!
GI’s early this episode. Which means, yay, the episode’s almost over and I’m almost done dealing with Rory…for a few episodes.
Sean trying to recall all of the stuff Rory said was hysterical. After a while he just starts making shit up. “Uh, koalas invented rice?” Sean and Jimmy are saving this episode.
Again, after another Rory fact, Sean feels the need to screw with him. He goes, “probably about four blokes at Oxford going, “heheh””
Okay, I think the funniest part of the episode just happened. Rory and Stephen are arguing about a technical term for something, and Sean decides he’s going to take the attention for himself. So he looks under his desk, and motions around, nervous. Then after a few seconds he starts playing like he’s being sucked under the desk, getting the attention of Alan. Stephen and Rory hear the audience reacting, but are still arguing. After this, Sean gets back in his seat, and goes “I’m sorry about that. There’s a portal to the underworld underneath here…”
Then, immediately after that, Rory and Stephen go RIGHT BACK INTO IT, and Sean, still not believing it, goes, ‘SORRY, I MISSED THAT, COULD YOU GO OVER THAT AGAIN?” Sean is KILLING IT this episode.
And Jimmy manages to sum up the entire episode with one single quote:
“You know how the show’s called Quite Interesting? Yeah, I think we’ve veered off that a bit…”
Sean continues trolling Rory, this time going “Hey, would you give me more points if I say it in a different language? OCHO! OCHO CARDIGAN-ES!”
Rory ONCE AGAIN gives a latin name, this time for a puffin, and Stephen, now a bit annoyed, goes “you’re just beginning to try my patience.”
Stephen: “Why does the House of Commons smell of urine?”
Jimmy: “Is it because they’ve got one of those Glade plug-in things?”
Jimmy, jokingly, goes “Tweed, as we all know, is made with urine.” To which Stephen goes “yes, that’s the answer.” Jimmy’s reaction is hysterical- he meant for that to be a joke. He goes “WHAT? IS IT…YES! YES IT IS!”
WAIT, HOW DID JIMMY LOSE THIS ONE??? This is a very odd episode.
So…Rory wins with 88. Uhm, yay, I guess.
Final Thoughts: Well…that certainly was an episode, wasn’t it? I’m not even sure how to categorize it. On one hand, you had Rory McGrath basically destroying everything the game held dear, and making a case for the worst ever showing from anyone ever on QI. On the other, you have Sean Lock completely owning Rory at every chance he gets. So it’s a mixed bag. I think that it’s a weak episode, because Rory definitely weighs it down, but it definitely has its moments, especially as far as Jimmy and Sean are concerned.
Best Guest: Sean
Show Winner: Rory
The Gyles Brandreth Award for Knowing Too Goddamned Much: Rory
Best QI Fact: Urine in Tweed Jackets.