Nevermind Watchdown: S25E01, or I’VE GOT A GREAT GIG FOR YOU, MICHAEL..

We have four series left of Nevermind the Buzzcocks. Which is weird. Like, it doesn’t feel like the series is, like 3/4ths over, considering the boom that’s happened in the last few seasons. Nevertheless, we soldier on into Series 25, another Guest Host series…and this one starts off with David Hasselhoff in the center chair…which is random, but could be hysterical. Besides, the Hoff was rocking his Britain’s Got Talent street cred and seems to be in the right mood for this show.

As for panelists, aside from the welcome return of Peter Serafinowicz, we have Amelle Berrabah from the Sugababes, Louie Spence is another coach from Pineapple Dance Studio, and, “according to our lawyers, he’s the only gay Louie on reality TV…”. Loick Essien was primed to be a pop/hip-hop star, only to be dropped by his label right before his album’s release. Hoff, in each panelist’s intro, mentions that they’re a ‘former Sugababe’, to mock the instability of the group’s roster.

The cold open is actually pretty great. David gets out of Kitt, goes running in slow motion and starts giving someone CPR…only for Phill and Noel to come in.
Phill: “DAVE, IT’S OCTOBER!”
David: “I know, I’m here to save the Buzzcocks…”
Phill: “It’s only a pop quiz, love…”

Plus, we’ve got a brand new opening sequence, a new, spiffy set, and a new look after a few too many seasons (apparently) of what’s essentially become the ‘Simon set’. It looks cool, and it’s great for a CLEARLY GAME Hasselhoff to break it in.

After showing a picture of himself from 1996, Hoff compares it with a pic of both the team captains circa the premiere, and…
Screen Shot 2016-12-07 at 1.20.26 AM.png
Phill: “I thought it was manatee week on the discovery channel…”
Hoff: “Noel, you look like someone I dated in high school…”
Noel: “I remember those years…”
Hoff: “Yeah, I don’t…”

One of the props for Noel’s side is a wig, which Louie immediately places on his incredibly bald head.

On what connects McCartney, a pile of cash, a tramp and a wax head:
Noel: “So he paid a tramp to…don’t say ‘give him head’, that’s wrong…”

Louie is insanely gay, and he’s somehow succeeding in classing up the show.
Noel: “He was keeping the waxwork clean, polishing it with his-”
Louie: “TONGUE!”
Noel: “…fingerless gloves.

Screen Shot 2016-12-16 at 10.04.41 PM.pngHoff: “Why have they only faced backwards and everyone else is turned the other way?”
Louie: “I’ve done that…”
Noel: “I don’t even know if that’s sexual or not. Are you like Predator- how he only sees in color? Do you only see in cock?”

And then, on the store of the Yellow Submarine model being stolen from a church:
Screen Shot 2016-12-16 at 10.07.12 PM.png
Phill: “Please tell me the next picture is him holding a fake leg…”

Hoff: “…how did I get on this show?”
Phill: “Hoff? Is the car calling you?”
Hoff, to his watch: “GET ME THE HELL OUT OF THIS SHOW…”
Phill, mid-chuckle: “That car is now your agent! ‘I’VE GOT A GREAT GIG FOR YOU, MICHAEL…'”
Peter: “‘MICHAEL, DON’T YOU REMEMBER? YOU HAD ME CRUSHED.”
Noel: “I SAW YOU LOOKING AT OTHER CARS, MICHAEL…”
Phill: “TOUCH MY GEAR STICK, MICHAEL…”
Peter: “THIS ISN’T REALLY A CAR, I’M JUST THE GUY WHO SITS IN THE BACK…”

Loick, on Liam Gallagher: “I mean, maybe he was sick, you know-”
Phill: “But you’re a young pop star. Do you mean ‘Maybe he was SSSIIICK!”
Loick: “I mean more, like, ill…”
Peter: “Like ‘ILLIN'”
Loick is already cracking up at every slam, so he’s already the opposite of Preston.

Hoff: “In 2006, Liam Gallagher sprayed Gaza- is it ‘GAY-ZA-”
Louie: “NO, *I’M*…”
Noel: “I’m gonna refer to him only as Gayza from now on. Knock on his door, ‘Excuse me, eees GAYZA home?”

Hoff: ‘Louie, how do you say it? Gayza or Gaza?”
Louie: “Oy, with THITH IMPEDIMENT…you’re talking to the wrong perthon…”

For intros, the configuration is slightly different, as Phill and Peter are doing intros for Loick, even if Loick is in the so-called Ejector Seat. Maybe this is how it is for the rest of the run? Not sure.

Loick, guessing: “…Frank Sinatra?”
Peter: “Old…Maggoty Eyes…”
The whole panel needs a bit to recover from this, especially David.

Phill and Peter’s chemistry is already amazing, but their intros are even better- their one for ‘Steady as She Goes’ by the Raconteurs is bloody perfect.

Loick: “I feel like I’m taking my exams all over again…”
Peter, confused: “What school did you GO to?”

Noel: “Louie thought it was Coronation Street…”
Loick: “In the beginning I thought it was ‘Summer Lovin’…had me a blast’.”
Phill: “Yeah, the beginning sounded a little like that, and NOT LIKE CORONATION STREET!”

Amelle gets up, once the real ‘Steady as She Goes’ plays, and starts dancing to it, encouraging Noel and Louie to get in on it.
Louie: “I’m up for it…”
Noel, Mr. Common Sense: “…Of course YOU’RE up for it…”

Hoff, reading ahead on the prompter: “Oh, this one’s GREAT! This one’ll definitely get me fired from Britain’s Got Talent.”
…as if you needed the help..

But anyway, the much-maligned joke, that Hoff WINCES as he tells.
Hoff: “No one is quite sure of the relationship between Jack and Meg White- married, just lovers…or brother and sister? It’s a lot like Simon Cowell’s relationship with Sinitta.”

Hoff’s next joke is about teenage Michael Buble’s desire to fuck sandwich meat “if at all possible….IF AT ALL POSSIBLE?”
Phill: “The next Morrison’s advert- they’re at the deli, and just out of shot you can see Buble’s ass bobbing up and down…”
Noel: With Alan Hansen going “WELL, THEAYR’ES BUUUBLE GETTING DE SAUSAGE MEEAT…YEW WON’T FIND SAUSAGE MEAT ANY CHEAPER THAN THAT…”

I was wrong, as Noel and Amelle just do theirs for Louie. Maybe Loick just didn’t wanna do intros and decided after seats were arranged? Either way, it’s…unusual.

Noel and Amelle, getting up for Intros, immediately tell Louie he’s gonna get the first intro. Then…just out of earshot we hear, getting closer…Phill and Peter singing the Coronation Street theme tune. Just to piss him off.

As Amelle and Noel take too long to harmonize.
Louie: “Man, I’m gonna go and bang one out…”
Noel: “Louie, you can’t have a danger wank while we’re warming up…”

Hoff: “I don’t really know about Wiggan, and we were gonna take Britain’s Got Talent there but we decided [reads prompter, realizes exactly what he’s about to read, sighs], that a man who juggles three families doesn’t constitute talent…”

ID Parade:
Peter: “It’s #2, he’s just got this…’I’m comfortable with fame’ look to him.”
Loick: “OH, HE’S GOT THE LOOK NOW!”
(#2 breaks)

My one main knock against Hasselhoff is that his delivery is way too slow, and his teleprompter drawl cost Phill’s team’s ID Parade most of its runtime.

After the ID Parade leaves:
Hoff: “…I’d love to go with them…”
Noel: “Next series, maybe…”

Louie: “What was the song again?”
Noel: “It was Goldie”
Louie, purposely misreading: “…I thought he had gold teeth and was in a Bond film… MY GOD HE’S CHANGED!”
Noel: “It’s not that one…and it’s not the dog from Blue Peter either.”

Hoff: “We’re gonna end with a round that’s all about me…”
[No audience response]
Hoff: “…and my hits.”
[A few groans from the audience.”
Hoff: “…shadaap.”
[Phill completely loses it.]
Phill: “You go ‘about me and my hits’, and A WOMAN IN THE FRONT ROW GOES ‘…won’t last long, then…”

Next Lines/Hoff Trivia: “Jump in my car.”
Peter: “…it fucking talks!”

Hoff: “Who can I blame for ruining the launch of my US solo career?”
Louie: “Yourself.”

Overall: A weird show, but a nice jolt of energy for Series 25. From a panel standpoint this was pretty strong, thanks to Peter and Louie giving great stuff, Loick having a wonderful time. David Hasselhoff was obviously the wrong fit, but he gave his all, and the writers had a ton of fun making him say offensive stuff…and have him realize this at the last second. Good enough show, though Hoff’s hosting brought some innovations I hope are not permanent this series.

Guest Host Rating: 7/10. Imperfect, but good enough
Best Regular: Phill
Best Guest: Peter
Best Runner: Coronation Street Theme

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