Nevermind Watchdown: S25E07, or “We Think it’s Number Thr-AAAIIIIIGHHH!

Every once in a while, Buzzcocks will give me rock’n’roll chills.

Doesn’t happen often, but the occasional appearance of a rock LEGEND on the show, like Lemmy Kilmister, Slash, Meat Loaf or Jimmy Cliff, does give me the rock goosebumps. And tonight, we get the crowning achievement, a rock panelist that was so awesome that he got to host the show. And that…is Alice Goddamned Cooper.

Alice gets to host a nice enough show, especially considering that Noel gets an extraordinary tight panel of Olly Murs and Rufus Hound. Also on the panel are Penny Smith, a TV presenter who last appeared in the Amy Winehouse meltdown episode (“Penny, this is not my penis, it’s only a friendly mouse…), and  rapper Wretch 32.

In quite possibly one of the greatest guest host intros in NMTB history, Alice gets on the intercom, and says “hello, my name is Alice Cooper, and welcome…to my nightmare.” Then, with a puff of black smoke and a flicker of the lights, he appears, and…it’s absolutely awesome. He just lives this. The crowd eats it up, too.
Of course, immediately afterward, the character drops, and he bashfully says “awright, siddown…”

Alice, in the ‘year of’ question, does confirm that he broke 6 ribs in a stage-dive.
Penny: “Was that the first-ever leap into the audience that anyone ever did?”
Phill: “The first stage dive, and the audience just didn’t know what you did…’WHAT’S HE DOING???”
Alice: “I bled all over everybody, it was great.”
Phill: “And normally, a rock star is spilling different fluids at a gig…”
Alice: “Yeah, I like to keep my blood…[to the camera]…and yours.”

Someone brings up Lorraine Kelly:
Phill: “Does she ask about me?”
Penny: “Every single time I see her…”
Phill: “I still think of her every time I wax my legs…”
Wretch, confused: “You wax your legs?”
Phill: “Awwwww yeah…I just looked ’round at a grime artist and went ‘aawwww yeah.'”
Noel: “You got your legs waxed ON THIS SHOW…”
Phill: “Let’s try that again.”
Wretch: “You wax your legs?”
Phill: “True dat.”

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 8.49.51 PM.pngNoel: “What I love about this ABBA picture is that is looks like they’ve been shipwrecked, and they’re going “THERE’S A HELICOPTER, HELP UUUSSS!!!”

Penny talks about accidentally backing into David Bowie at a party.
Noel: “Were you in a car? Were you doing your driving test?”

Noel: “Was he in his Labyrinth outfit?”
Alice: “Yeah, that was a good look…”
Phill: “It’d be great if you backed into him and he said “you’ll never find your little bay-bayyy…”

Penny: “I actually spoke to Dustin Hoffman as well- well, actually I backed into him-”
Noel: “Do you walk backwards?”

On why Bowie broke into a mental ward
Wretch: “Maybe he forgot his key?”
There’s a 5 second shot of Wretch looking around, wondering why people are laughing.

Rufus: “What happened to Mika?”
Noel: “He’s in my basement, tied to a radiator…He can have food, but he’s making no music ever again…”

Rufus is going off about Avril Lavigne.
Rufus: “I once went past Hammersmith apollo, and there was a queue outside, and I said ‘I wonder who’s on’, and it was Avril Lavigne. I just thought ‘if everyone in there died, then no one would cry.”
Wretch: “…I was in that queue…”

Olly, towards Rufus: “What, d’you think 2007, maybe?”
Noel: “DON’T ASK HIM, HE’S INSANE!”

Alice: “How did the police upset my friend Ozzy Osbourne in 2007”
Rufus: “Did they insist on a rectal examination?”
Alice: “No, that would have been okay with him, I think…”
Phill: “I can see him now…he’s that absent-minded. ‘SHARROOOOON…’S THAT YOOOU?”

Alice: “This probably should have happened to Sting…”
Rufus: “They give him the electric chair?”

This week, thanks to Alice’s presence, the Intros are rock-themed. One of the few guest-host-based changes that I’m perfectly fine with.

The Elvis story that Alice tells, about going to Elvis’ place in an elevator with Liza Minnelli, Chubby Checker and Linda Lovelace, is a classic- I’d actually heard it before on 60 minutes or something. But it’s still fantastic, and I’m not gonna reprint it here but it’s a killer story.

Noel: “I’m still reeling over the fact that you were there with Liza Minnelli. He must have thought you were sisters…”
Alice: “Now, only 3 of us came down that night, so I have no idea what he was doing with Chubby Checker all night…”

Noel’s 2nd Intro is, well, Poison by Alice Cooper, which Alice helps Rufus get by saying “the lead singer’s really sexy…”

Excerpt from Penny trying to guess Phill’s 1st intro
Penny: “Down…down, Status Quo?”
Phill: “It’s not words…”
Penny: “Kylie Minogue?”
Phill: “ROCK THEMED ROUND…”

The G’NR intro leads to a discussion about Slash:
Phill: “He once came on the show, and we were pestering him to tell anecdotes about Guns ‘N Roses, and I went ‘come on, you must have had some amazing gigs, and he went ‘one time we played in London, and uh…my hat melted…”

Alice: “Slash, though, was not the first to wear a top hat…”
Phill: “…ABRAHAM LINCOLN!”

Penny: “Is this one rock-themed”
Phill: [facepalm]
Wretch: “easy…”

Phill even says “tell you what, we’ll even do the first vocal bit.”
Of course, the intro’s School’s Out for Summer, so they just motion to Alice once they finish the intro…and nothing happens.
Penny: “…I thought you said you were gonna do the vocal bit…”
Phill: “…yeah, well I had the FUCKING SINGER HERE, i thought he might do it…”

Alice just hums the tune…along with MOST OF THE PANEL.
Noel: “You MUST KNOW IT…if you don’t know this, you have to leave…”
Penny: “It’s Alice Cooper!”
Noel: “YES!”
Penny: “…I don’t know what it’s called…”
Everyone: [facepalm]

Noel: “IT’S SCHOOL’S OUT!”
Penny: “SCHOOL’S OUT! And I know that one!”
Phill: “APPARENTLY YOU DOOOON’T!”

Another member of Napalm Death is on the ID Parade, although a different clip is shown, instead of the usual one [“RRRRRR!! RRRRRRR!!!”]

Phill: “I’m gonna get #4 to explain the plot of LOST to me…”
Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 9.33.12 PM.png

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 9.36.05 PM.pngRufus: “I have to say…I don’t think I’m ever gonna sleep again…If we don’t finish this up quickly, #3’s gonna die…”

Noel: “So maybe it’s something kind of bigger, but #50”
Rufus: “We’re talking Alice Motherfucking Cooper here. He’s not gonna come out with a corn snake!”

Olly manages to frighten Noel with something he thinks is a snake
Noel: “We think it’s Number thr-AAAIIIGHH!”
Olly: “Just giving you your feather back!”
Noel: “I thought you produced a snake out of your denim jacket!”
[Phill is absolutely crying]
Noel: “Sorry, I am on mushrooms…”
Rufus: “Good to know that, when flustered, Noel becomes a Victorian lady…”

Instead of a sendoff line for the ID Parade guest, as it’s his snake and it’s a bunch of lookalikes, Alice just said “now guest-hosting BBC pop quizzes, Alice Cooper, ladies and gentlemen…”

The Next Lines swap-out round is a ‘guess the name of the album’ round, which…sort of works, I guess.

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 9.51.09 PM.pngNoel: “I Seem To Be Inside My Own Drink…”

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 9.52.42 PM.pngNoel: “HUBBA BUBBA TIT-STRETCH!”

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 9.54.52 PM.pngPhill: “It’s Bacon Week with the Hairy Bikers.”
Wretch: “I’m a Pig, Get Me Out of Here!”

Screen Shot 2016-12-24 at 9.56.19 PM.png

Oh, Aphex Twin…

Wretch: “I’ve Got Something On My Chest”

Trying to name Alice’s new album
Alice: “I’ve already named an album this title.”
Phill: “Alice Cooper’s Greatest Hits II”
Alice: “Think scarier.”
Phill, spookier voice: “…ALICE COOPER’S GREATEST HITS TWOOOO…”
Paul Merton’s gonna sue his ass…

Overall: Another really nice show, courtesy of a pretty-sharp panel and an exceptionally game Alice Cooper. Rufus had the best lines, but Wretch was an unlikely soundbite machine, and Penny had some great moments. Alice was spinning stories, keeping the game moving, and basking in his rock persona. It was just a really fun show, with only a few nitpicks along the way.

Guest Host Rating: 9/10. Pretty close to perfect.
Best Regular: Noel
Best Guest: Rufus
Best Runner: Alice Cooper…existing, I guess…

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