Well, as I am allowed to say this since a member of Slade is on hand tonight, IIIIIIIIIITTTTT’S CHRRRISSSSTMAAAAASSSSS!!!!
Tonight’s long-delayed Series 7 Christmas Episode, brought back thanks to the quest for the lost episodes, features Rich Hall, Dave Hill from Slade, the last appearance of one of the members of the NMTB old guard, Tony “Not Metal, Don’t Know” Wright, and Daytime TV host Lorraine Kelly
Heck, Mark even recycles the ‘Christmas is about one man…but we couldn’t get Noddy Holder’ joke from last time. At least now Dave Hill’s in the room.
Rich, on Bon Jovi and Kim Wilde: “She’s also got two doorbells…she’s clearly STOLEN Jon Bon Jovi’s doorbell…I don’t understand it, why are there two doorbells? Is it a doorbell to GET INTO the doorbell?”
Sean makes a joke that Lorraine Kelly’s on the wrong program, “because R. Kelly’s doing a makeover program next door…”
Rich: “Alright, this is a longshot…she’s wearing a polka-dot dress
Mark, not amused: “yeah…”
Rich: “…polka…polish dance…Poland invaded by Hitler…DIDN’T WANT TO, but he had Goebbels up his ass. Cindy Crawford…went out with Richard Gere…”
Sean: “Is it to do with Chris Evans? Cause I know Kim used to go out with Chris Evans- actually, is it to do with Chris Evans showing up at parties? Cause he’s decided he’s not going to Bon Jovi’s party, hence the big smile. Kim gets the shock of her life- Chris Evans has turned up at her Christmas party. Cause they broke up after Chris beat her senseless…”
Mark: “Did he?”
Sean: “…at Monopoly.”
Rich: “beat her to a Pulp….concert.”
Mark: “How many more of these are there?”
Sean: “He knocked her flying….lessons, said ‘oh, these are very expensive…’
Sean: “Jon Bon Jovi was supposed to DJ once on Chris Evans’ show, but the government wouldn’t let him because he didn’t have a work permit.”
Rich, hearing this, scurries offstage.
Sean: “Rich, I’ll marry ya! Come back, it’ll be legal!”
Sean: “Are both their records being used to reinforce sand bags during the flooding?”
Mark, knowing when this is broadcast: “Which, you may remember, happened a few months ago…”
Sean: “AND STILL CONTINUE TO THIS DAY…I think we’ve got that covered…”
Phill: “Tony, have you got anything-”
Mark: “Oh, I was looking forward to this. The ‘Tony, Have You Got Anything’ portion of the show…”
Tony, on Sinead O’Connor: “No, she is a woman of the cloth…”
Sean: “A cleaner?”
Tony: “…she did have a pledge!”
(Everyone loses it. Tony, as dim as he can be, is really damn funny at times)
Rich, guessing an intro: “They’re doing…Rockin’ Robin. It’s Christmastime!”
Mark: “A robin’s a christmas related bird, I think.”
Rich: “It’s winter! The robins are dead at Christmas!”
Rich: “They’re dead, they’re falling out of the frozen trees, it’s a sick premise!”
Mark: “But on Christmas cards, I don’t know if you have them over there, but we have robins on the front–albeit dead, pressed ones…”
Dave, trying to explain to Tony what instrument he’s miming: “This is a hobo”
Mark: “A HOBO??? Is this the Puff Daddy Orchestra?”
Mark, like usual, just lets Tony struggle in intros, this time by letting Dave give him hints for ‘A Winter’s Tale’ “because I know you’re never gonna get it.”
The closest he gets is ‘A Cold Winter’s Tale’.
Mark: “You’re very close”
Tony: “A Chilly Winter’s Tale?”
After the song’s been played, Mark: “A Cold Winter’s Tale? As opposed to all the warm winters we’ve been having…”
Dave: “Does he need us to do it again?”
Phill: “Please, for the love of God, no.”
Mark: “I’ve had easier-moving Boxing Day shits than this…”
Mark: “Lorraine, I know you know it…but hold on, I’m gonna give him an anagram…Christmas Merry Wombling…”
Tony: “…Merry Christmas Wombling! Wombling Christmas Merry!”
Mark, to Phill: “….he didn’t get it, didn’t he?”
Mark: “Mike Batt’s big break came on Top of the Pops, when he stood behind Jimmy Savile waving in his Wombles suit. It’s the only time in history of television that children have run TOWARDS Jimmy Savile.”
This is great- f0r Phill (and Dave’s) ID Parade, they have to pick out who plays Noddy Holder in a Slade tribute band.
once #3 is shown, there’s a definite audience reaction. The guy looks around, wondering what’s so funny.
Mark’s name for #3 is ‘Bill Oddie Noddy’. Which makes the audience laugh harder.
#4 is ‘ShowwoddyNoddy’
And #5, “and I’m really uncomfortable saying this, ‘If I said you had a beautiful Noddy would you hold it against me'”
Dave, on the confounding fake Noddys: “Has this been personally put on to annoy me?”
Mark: “No, YOU’VE been- never mind…”
Tony: “I’ve got #2 down, because all the other 4…3?…no, 4…”
Sean: “No wonder your gigs take so long, Tony. “1…5…2..GO!”
Sean, on the Mel C’s mom choices: “It’s not #2, because she plays Dave in the Slade tribute band…”
Sean: “#1 could be Baby Spice’s…uh…sister.”
Mark: “Oh, you smooth talker…”
Mark jokingly admits he didn’t know that Jesus was born on Christmas Day
Dave: “Actually, he wasn’t born on Christmas Day, but that’s another story…”
Phill: “AND ON THAT THEOLOGICAL BOMBSHELL, GOODNIGHT FROM NEVERMIND THE BUZZCOCKS…”
Next Lines: “And there won’t be snow in Africa this Christmastime.”
Rich: “…NO SHIT.”
Mark: “Frosty the Snowman was a happy, jolly soul.”
Sean: “…and then he met, Dave, and…now he’s a bit pear-shaped…”
Mark: “…AS IF THE TORTURE WASN’T ENOUGH…the scores are equal.”
Sean, guessing the tiebreak: “43 seconds.”
Mark: “FORTY THREE SECONDS???”
Sean: “I want Phill to win! I want him to have a happy Christmas.”
Mark: “Yes, but that means Dave has one too…”
Sean: “Oh, do we have to WATCH the clip? 4 seconds.”
The end of this episode is Anne Robinson telling Mark he’s the Weakest Link, which must have been a pretty topical joke then…
Overall: FANTASTIC Christmas show, with a solid panel, consistently funny games, running gags that kept coming, things for all three regulars to do, and lots of Rich Hall lines. This was a nice last hurrah for Tony, and he had a hysterical, if inept, showing. Dave was in a great mood, even in being lampooned, and Lorraine, while bringing up the rear, still did a fine job. Good stuff all around.
Best Regular: Sean
Best Guest: Rich
Best Runner: Tony in Intros
FINALLY, SERIES 7 SUPERLATIVES!
Best Episode: Episode 2, featuring Daphne & Celeste annoying the hell out of Mark, Par Wiksten being surprisingly edgy for a musician, Graham Gouldman being himself, and Mark going for the jugular with every goddamn joke.
2nd Best Episode: Episode 10, this very one, featuring Rich Hall being Rich Hall, Tony Wright absolutely bombing at Intros and Dave Hill being tortured by Noddy Holder lookalikes.
Worst Episode: Episode 3. Man, there was just NOTHING GOOD about this one. Just boring all the way through.
Best Regular: Mark, for being his angriest yet this season, which was a good sign for the future of the program.
Best Musician Guest: Alvin Stardust, Episode 9, for taking the opportunity and having fun with it, and having fun with Mark. Runner up goes to Per Wiksten.
Best Comedian Guest: So much competition this year, but I’m going with Rich Hall, Episode 10, for completely dominating his episode. Sean Lock, Bob Mortimer, Johnny Vegas and Dave Gorman were all considered.
Most Confused Guest: John Entwistle, Episode 1.. A shame, too.
Best Dartboard for Mark (and Everyone): David Soul, Ep. 8. So. Many. Starsky and Hutch Jokes.
Most Annoying Guests: Daphne and Celeste, Episode 2. I believe they nearly broke Mark.