The good news is that tonight’s guest host is NMTB recent favorite and pop culture’s favorite unsung hero, Martin Freeman. The also-good news is that Charlie Brooker, comic and creator of OH MY GOD SHOW of the minute Black Mirror, is also in the building.
The bad news…is that this, sadly, is a Dappy episode. So, we may not score very highly on coherency. I’m just hoping that Martin took Simon’s notes on fucking with him.
Simon Bird, from the Inbetweeners is here, and, I’m guessing, was a last-minute replacement for David Mitchell. Still, he’s from the Inbetweeners, so he’s probably funny. Martha Wainwright’s a singer songwriter- her brother’s Rufus, her dad’s Loundon the third, so you’ve probably heard of one of them.
Martin’s first lines sum up his entire career: “Hello, I’m Martin Freeman. You may recognize me.”
Heck, he may have used that one for his SNL appearance…
Of course, as this is the third episode for Dappy, and since this show’s basically brought him to the mainstream, his entrance is LITERALLY DESCENDING FROM THE CEILING, with smoke and everything. At least he knows who he is.
For some reason, instead of his usual little toof-hat, Dappy is wearing a genuine black Houston Astros cap. In 2009, the Astros were circling last. Good for Dappy, being with the times.
On the Bonnie Tyler video:
Martha: “My hair looks like that when I wake up…”
Noel: “When you wake up at the Grand Canyon?”
(Sidenote- Martha has the look of Tiff Stevenson and the sound of fellow Canadian Katherine Ryan. So yeah.)
Noel: “Ah, there IS a man there. I thought it was just a horse…”
Dappy, to Noel: “If me and you went to a club, which one of us would get more girls?”
Martin: “It depends on which club, to be fair…”
After Martin calls Soulja Boy a twat in the intro clip (“If you want more information, text TWAT to this number”)
Dappy: “He’s got enough money to pay off the mortgages of his mum, his dad, his bruv. Why you calling him a twat?”
Charlie: “…he looks like one?”
Martin: “Sorry, I should have been a bit number. I retract that. If you want more information, text INTERESTING NEW POET to this number.”
Phill: “DAPPYYYY…stop sulking. Tell us about Soulja Boy. We don’t know anything about him, me and Charlie, we’re white and middle class.”
Simon: “…SO’S DAPPY!”
Martha, getting up for intros: “Very tough to stand…top with baby in it” [she points to her pregnant belly.]
Noel: “…Martha brought her baby on the show…I told her it has a green room…”
Noel and Martha’s first intro consists of Martha awkwardly dancing and writhing around, nearly sexually. After she finishes, she says “…that’s how I got pregnant.”
Simon: “I have no idea. I feel bad asking a pregnant woman to do it again…”
Then Simon tries guessing which Beyonce song it was.
Simon: “…she had a song about putting a ring on something…or putting something in a ring, I don’t…”
Phill’s absolutely losing it across the room. Simon’s just savage, even if he doesn’t mean to be.
Great moment…Dappy starts complimenting Martha for a song of hers…and it’s actually a song of Cerys Matthews’. The entire panel knows it’s the wrong person, even Martha does. Simon even goes “well, this is awkward.” Noel has to tell Dappy that it’s the wrong person, and Dappy completely crumbles.
Dappy: “You may be smarter than me on this show…”
Noel: “You know the way Dappy came in? Can he go out the same way?”
Simon knows the first few lines of Addicted to Love (‘the lights are on, and you’re not home…’), but he has no idea what the song is or who sang it.
Simon: “Oh, this is frustrating. Very frustrating.”
Phill: “I’ad no idear a quiz would be like this, I really…”
Martin: “You may as well take a guess.”
Simon: “….Yellow Submarine, by the Beatles.”
Martin: “…it’s not that. It’s…actually In My Life, by the Beatles.”
Simon, astonished: “IS IT???”
Martin, summing up the show so far: “Me and Dappy having a cuss-off…Martha’s having an affair with Noel. I think the best behaved one of us so far has been TV’s potty mouth Brooker.”
Charlie: “…I’ve jerked off three times under this desk…”
I stand firm in my belief that Dappy is surprisingly good at Intros, and has nice teamwork with Phill- he and Dappy do a nice rendition of Two Tribes that Charlie’s able to guess instantly. So yes, Dappy is thick, but he’s a very good panelist in this regard.
Heck, after that intro, Charlie’s going “that was one of the most arousing experiences of my life. Would it put you off if I just started masturbating??”
Phill and Dappy’s next one is ‘Life in the Fast Lane’ by the Eagles, which is a great Intro…until Dappy starts adding, in the beats, ‘PHILL AND DAPS’.
Charlie: “HE’S PUTTING ME OFF. He’s adding new lyrics!”
Phill: “HE CAN AND HE WILL…AND YOU CAN’T STOP HIM!”
Dappy, on the ID Parade: “How much do they get paid to come on the show?”
Martin: “Not enough, uh, for us to keep them waiting too long…”
Simon: “Personally I think 3 but I could see it being 4.”
Noel: “Well, I did see #4 coming out of the office earlier today-”
Simon: “That’ll do it…it’s four.”
Phill’s ID Parade is for ‘Fairweather Friends’ band Symposium, so they’re all given weather related names. The best of which is “…#3, wet patches.”
…and “#4, not as bright as forecast…”
Phill: “#3’s giving it the hard one, but he just giggled at ‘wet patches’ so we know…”
Oh dear lord…
Martin: “I should probably point out that Symposium were famed for their extremely energetic live shows.”
Dappy: “Okay, okay, so it can’t be #4 then, wait…”
Phill, in response, walks off the program, towards the lineup…and gives #4 a high-five as he leaves.
Dappy, to Martin: “You started being all rude to him, and now look what you’ve done to by bloomin partner!”
Martin: “*I* was being nice…”
Charlie, to Martin: “YOU’VE DID IT, YOU’VE BROKEN THE SHOW!”
Dappy: “Where is Phill, is he seriously not coming back?”
Martin, dead serious: “He’s left. He’s gone.”
Dappy: “Look, has he done a Preston, cause IF HE HAS…”
Dappy even threatens to stop the show unless Phill comes back, even yelling “PHILL” towards the offstage area. I can just imagine Phill, sipping some soft drink off to the side of the backstage area, laughing his goddamned ass off at the fact that Dappy’s BEGGING for him to come back. He must have just taken some time to just compose himself, because he knew, obviously, that this’d throw Dappy off…BUT NOT LIKE THIS.
Martin’s still playing the ‘Phill’s serious’ card, which is classic.
Dappy: “DIRECTORS. IS HE SERIOUS?”
(Simon audibly loses it here.)
Noel: “Can I take Phill’s breakdown to go to the toilet?”
Dappy: “If it’s true [that Phill’s not coming back], then I’m walking off too…”
Martin: “BUT THEN POOR CHARLES!”
Charlie: “YEAH, THEN I’M ON ME FUCKIN’ OWN!”
Martin, begging Dappy to answer: “What is your vibration telling you?”
Dappy: “It’s telling me that Phill needs to get back on this blooming stage.”
Martin: “I don’t know if Phill can hear you. He may already be on the A1.”
Phill eventually does return, sort of chagrined.
Dappy: “Babe, are you gonna give me a hug, or-”
Phill: “Honestly, I’ve left a pie on, so…”
Dappy: “So you didn’t get pissed off about it?”
Phill: “No, of course I didn’t. It’s #5.”
Martin: “I’m bringing sexy back.”
Martin: “You’ll find that life is still worthwhile…”
Phill: “…no I won’t…”
Dappy’s exit is basically the exact same as his intro, with Martin wishing him a tearful goodbye before signing off.
Overall: Proof that Buzzcocks could go on stronger without Simon Amstell. This may have been one for the pantheon, folks- an entire episode with more laughs, more panelists on top of their game, more moments of hilarity, and an incident that elevated this one from just another great episode to an all-time classic. In terms of panelists, I’d rate Martha last, even if she had some fantastic moments in Intros, followed by Simon, and that’s a hard #3 as his lines made up the bulk of the middle half, Charlie, who nearly saved the last half, and Dappy…who, even if he was intentionally funny, made this one a joy and a thrill altogether. In terms of Martin…his guest-hosting skills were already prime, but his ability to take something like the Phill-walking-off incident and make it gold just by playing absolutely serious and screwing with Dappy made him truly a master of the Guest Host era. Not a dull moment overall, and something I’d gladly rewatch.
Guest Host Rating: 10/10. Would recommend.
Best Regular: Noel
Best Guest: Dappy
Best Runner: Dappy…just existing.