QI Watchdown: C6 (Cockneys)

Whew, it’s been a while. It’s nice to be back home after a long semester. Let’s see, who’s on the slate for tonight- OH, LOVELY! Phill and Bill! Who else.

(realization pause)

Oh no…

Yep, tonight’s episode, Cockneys, also counts as Episode II in this Series C saga, the Massive Git Strikes Back. Rory McGrath did so well ruining Common Knowledge that he’s back for this one. Thankfully, my two favorite guests are here with him, Phill Jupitus and Bill Bailey, and Alan is always at his best. So, this episode could be salvageable…that is, if Rory behaves. And it’s very unlikely that he’ll behave.

Might as well get into the fuckin’ thing:

Not sure if anybody notices, but when Stephen introduces Rory, there are about four or five people in the audience that boo, but they’re mostly drowned out by the cheers. Which begs the question: WHO DID THIS GIT HIRE TO CHEER FOR HIM?

Interestingly enough, Stephen wants to start with Bill tonight, obviously knowing something Bill doesn’t, rather than Phill, as he usually would. It’s only when Bill says something that Stephen actually listens to him and does the rotation like he usually would. Of course, when he gets to Bill’s buzzer, it’s Patsy Cline’s ‘Bill Bailey, won’t you please come home?’, which is most notable for Bill’s reaction, because he’s obviously heard it a million times. Just going ‘yeah, right, whatever…’ Alan follows this up by playing the idiot, going ‘it’s very clever what they’ve done there.’

All the buzzers are very cockney-ish songs, most of which I’ve never heard of but the audience definitely has. Alan’s is, of course, a fake cockney, Dick Van Dyke from Mary Poppins singing ‘Chim-Chim-Chiree’

Stephen starts the episode speaking in a lot of Cockney slang, so he even says that if anyone gives an answer in slang, he’ll award extra points…however, he says it in that slang, causing a confused Alan to yell “WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT??”

Phill is most confused by the fact that ‘woman’ equals ‘buzz’, because women means ‘does’. Phill responds by going ‘so now we’re doing middle class Cockney rhyming slang!?”

Stephen and Rory are trying to figure out something that rhymes with ‘Davies’. Stephen suggests going to a restaurant and asking about the different types of Davies, ‘gravies’. And Bill, outraged, goes “HOW MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF GRAVY DO YOU KNOW OF??”

4:40 in: Rory gets his first correct answer. And I guess it’s all downhill from Guinness, to coin a Cockney phrase.

Okay, eventually Stephen introduces a nice game of ‘Pin the Taste Buds on the Catfish’, which everyone has to play with a toy catfish and taste bud stickers. I sometimes adore how inventive this show can be.

Bill realizes he has to press his buzzer, which starts playing ‘bill Bailey’, and he’s already going ‘no…NO…NO!’ I just love his general disgust whenever he hears that song. He just presses Alan’s, which plays Chim-Chim-Chiree, which Alan blankly bobs his head to.

Phill proves he’s been paying attention this entire series, by saying that bamboo’s a grass, not a tree. Stephen responds by saying ‘well done, little one’, to which, Rory and Phill, at the same time, go “LITTLE?”

All four are trying to guess the ‘coal and toothbrushes’ question. Alan just reaches and guessed ‘toothbrushes used to be alive billions of years ago…’

Okay, now I’m back onto this episode’s reins. Rory tries to get more points by pointing out an obscure fact about nylon, only for Stephen to subtract points, because he knew he’s try to say that and set the klaxon trap. That’s ingenious, and wonderful.

I adore the discussion about ‘Stephen Fry’s all-endangered-species bathroom cabinet’, sparked by using ivory for a toothbrush handle, and then everybody, especially Phill and Bill, taking it further. Bill ends it by going “I’ll use this coelacanth to rub my back!”

Stephen is caught in a very-rare fuck-up. He says someone committed suicide by ‘taking saliva’ when his wife was pregnant. Of course Rory’s the one to catch him on that, calling it a ‘freudian blowjob- I MEAN SLIP!’

At this point in the episode, a bit more than halfway, I think I’ve heard Rory’s buzzer more times than I heard the Lord of the Rings theme at the 2004 Oscars, which, if you’ll remember, was every goddamned second for three and a half hours.

Stephen describes what goes in to a baby’s stool. Bill says ‘yes, we laminated it.’ Bill is having a very nice night. Matter of fact, all four are doing really well in terms of jokes. It’s just that Rory just knows too goddamned much.

Stephen: “Why shouldn’t I strip Alan naked and cover him in gold paint?”
Phill: “You…win your Oscar properly like everyone else.”
(Probably the quote of the episode)

Stephen says that Ian Fleming once wrote that homosexuals can’t whistle. After which, he tries, and fails, at whistling.

Once Stephen announces the question, “how many senses do you have”, and Alan buzzes in, you can hear Bill, from off camera, go “I sense a buzzer coming…” And sure enough…

I love how Alan just writes ‘CATFISH’ in taste buds on his catfish. Gotta love Alan

wait…BILL WON??? I mean…what? how? why?

I don’t care. I’m just overjoyed that Rory didn’t win.

Even better, Rory has negative points! YES!

Final Thoughts: Not a bad episode, but not a flawless one. Phill and Bill were in top form, even if Phill was a bit more quiet than usual. Rory wasn’t as trollish as he was last time, but still took a lot of the fun out of it. Alan looked like he was having a lot of fun tonight.

MVP: Alan
Best Guest: Bill
Show Winner: Phill
Gyles Brandreth Award for Knowing Too Goddamned Much: Rory
Best QI Fact: toothbrushes.

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