QI Watchdown: G12 (Gravity)

This is the kind of episode that feels like classic QI. You’ve got two semi-regs who’ve been there from the beginning, Rich Hall and Bill Bailey, plus you’ve got a SPECIAL GUEST, Barry Humphries, best known for his characters Dame Edna and Sir Les Patterson, and for voicing the main shark in Finding Nemo.

All the buzzers have to do with weight. Rich is an anvil that takes forever to fall, which causes him to go ‘oh, man…’ before it does. Bill’s is a talking scale, which tells him his weight is 12 stone, 2 lbs, 4 oz. Both Alan and Stephen go “you wish…” Alan’s is someone being flung into space.

After the first question of the game, Barry buzzes in to say “I meant to say, I like that tie very, very much…”
Stephen: “Thank you, and coming from a man with your color sense that makes me so happy.”
Barry is adorned in a bright yellow robe, so it all makes sense.

I find it interesting that Rich Hall is in the room anytime someone mentions the moon on this show. For instance, when Stephen says that the gravity train would be easier on the moon, Rich, remembering Cruithne, says ‘which moon are we talking, here?’
Stephen even notices the irony, and goes “always a sore point…”

Stephen says that Galileo figured out that heavy objects did not fall faster than lighter ones. “How did he?”
Barry: “He dropped two cannonballs off the Leaning Tower of Piza.”
Stephen, crushed: “Ah, did he?”
KLAXON. All the while Barry’s looking around confused.

Alan: “What’s heavier, a ton of gold or a ton of feathers?”
And he’s grinning, knowing the answer. Bill even goes “is this an Elton John party request?”
Stephen: “Well, actually, one is heavier, because gold is measured in a different unit than feathers, so technically gold is heavier…”
Alan’s smile drops and he full-on face palms.

Stephen, on the hot-air-balloon mile-high club members: “It says here that as they were going over Picadilly, she was on all fours.”
Alan: “What, was it a glass-bottom balloon?”

Barry is a great personality, but he’s buzzing in with the right answers quite a bit. I’m not putting him anywhere near John Sessions or Rory McGrath, but he’s covering solely the knowledge part tonight.

Barry, after getting his umpteenth klaxon: “I hope I get the worst marks, because losing is the new winning.”
Stephen: “You know, you’re bidding fair…”

Stephen says the average bullet can reach up to 2 and a half kilometers up.
Alan: “Straight into the couple shagging in the balloon.”

Stephen: ‘Are there any scientists who can back me up on this?”
Audience: “yeah!”
Stephen: “There are a couple in the audience-”
Rich: “Or any assassins?”

Stephen: “Why did Fosbury flop?”
Alan: “…gravity…”

Stephen says that limbo players have to “flatten their nipples, or snip them off.”
Bill: “I once lost a limbo competition-”
Alan: “I thought you were gonna say you lost a nipple…IT WAS A RAZORBLADE! We were playing in prison.
Stephen: ‘Russian limbo.”
Alan then does an impression of someone who’s nipples are being cut off. It’s hysterical.

Bill: “No, but I lost a limbo competition.”
Alan: “Really? Someone got lower than you?”
Bill: “Someone more limber than me, yeah. Actually, it was Lionel Blair.”
Alan: “Obviously a dream. ‘ME AND LIONEL BLAIR WERE HAVING A LIMBO COMPETITION…one of my NIPPLES fell off!”
Bill: ‘Look, I had a bit of bleu cheese before I went to bed.”

Stephen: ‘How big would a cloud need to be in order to dispense my regular amount of wine?”
Bill’s buzzer: “TWELVE STONE, FOUR OUNCES.”
Stephen: “no…’does not compute'”

Stephen: “How many bullets are there in a gunslinger’s revolver?”
Alan: “Seven! Five!”
Bill’s buzzer: “TWELVE STONE, FOUR OUNCES.”

Rich: “Five.”
Stephen: “You’re quite right. Why five?”
Rich: “GRAVITY!’

Overall: A solid show, with a lot to like, but a bit thin in the middle. Bill and Rich gave great answers, and Barry was colorful, if not as funny as the others. A lot to like, but not a laugh-a-minute one like Greats or Groovy.

MVP: Bill
Best Guest: Rich
Show Winners: Alan and Rich
Best QI Fact: bloody steak.
Best Runner: Shagging in the air balloon.

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