I don’t know a ton of the participants in tonight’s Buzzcocks, but the ones i do know…I am excited for.
Mark Watson’s the guest host, and he’s very fit for it, having been stellar on his previous gigs, and having rocked a guest Bill gig last season, so he’ll be great. Tim Minchin’s also on the panel, and he’ll probably be hysterical.
Daniel Merriweather’s an Australian singer-songwriter type. Donal MacIntyre’s a TV investigative/undercover journalist, sort of the british answer to Chris Hansen, I’d guess. Shingai Shoniwa’s the lead singer of R&B/pop group the Noisettes.
After reading through the incredibly odd answers for the Leona Lewis question (swarm of spiders, a falcon running off with shoes, or a seahorse costume), Mark just says “I think Noel wrote these answers…”
Phill: “I mean, she’s halfway there to play the seahorse…”
The audience ‘AWWWW’s
Donal: “That’s a bit harsh…”
Mark: “OKAY…WELL, ALRIGHT…”
Phill: “Oh, no, it’s positively spherical…”
Mark, Noel and Donal are all trying to figure out who Mark Ronson went as for his birthday party (Daniel was a banana).
Donal: “Where am I gonna hide, undercover, as a banana?”
Noel, channeling Bill Bailey: “greengrocers…”
It was a year after Lewis-mania, and you could tell Mark was already tiring of her:
“Interesting fact about Leona Lewis…..nnnnope.”
Also on the bill: Pete Dockerty slams:
Noel: “I like Pete Dockerty, because he manages to be skinny and flabby at the same time.”
Phill: “They actually shot this [black and white] video in color- that’s just the color he is.”
Noel: “…he sucks the color out of life…”
Tim: “I’m trying to be respectful, but it’s just so hard with his face…”
This whole conversation they have about Pete Dockerty swallowing a plimpsoll onstage, and him developing a plimpsoll habit, is one of the most inclusive, QI-esque conversations, because literally everyone’s in on it, even Shingai. About how the habit moves to trainers, then boots. People cutting him up with flip-flops. It’s absolutely absurd in the best way possible.
After Donal can’t get the first intro.
Tim: “We know what it is. I mean, I’d like to pretend that I know what it is to look cooler, but…Noel knows what it is.”
For Phill and Daniels’s 2nd intro, Daniel has this really nice drumbeat, that’s loud on the desks, and literally the entire panel just starts copying it, even Donal who’s trying to guess.
Phill, disgusted: “THIS IS NOT STOMP.”
Great moment. Mark does the whole ‘Noel and Shingai, here are your for Tim”. 5 seconds go by. Then Mark realizes he should probably hand them the envelope (“you want this?”)
Mark: “I was so pleased that I read it right that I didn’t even bother giving it…”
Shingai and Noel’s intro for ‘Me and Julio (Down by the Schoolyard)’ is another one of the all-time classics, I think. I got it almost immediately.
Phill: “THEY WERE FIVE GUYS ON THE WEEKEND OF A LIFETIME…WEEKEND AT BERNIE’S FIVE: THEY’RE ALL DEAD!”
Donal: “I know who it is!”
Phill: “Look at this, MacIntyre, who actually hid in the band for some years…”
This is a fun little scripted bit, but it works. Mark claims that Donal’s been letting his guard down for a number of conspiracies on the show, the biggest of which is Chico coming on and feeding Noel’s team answers. And yes, we get another nice Chico appearance, which was the norm in the late 00’s.
Of course, once Chico leaves, Mark deadpans “…he’s been down there since 2006.”
Donal actually has a wonderful callback: “I know it’s #3, because the bastard sold the story to the mirror last week…”
Mark: “Yeah, it was about you, Jamelia and him…”
Overall: Light, but breezy. Mark was very high-energy, but sometimes was a bit too into it. I sort of preferred him as a panelist. Tim, Donal and Shingai were really into it. This one had its moments, just not enough of them.
Guest Host Rating: 8/10.
Best Regular: Phill
Best Guest: Tim
Best Runner: Leona Lewis