Just a Thought: Comic Relief

by

In the past it would’ve taken an iron will or three VHS tapes to get through the nearly-annual maelstrom of goodwill they call Comic Relief. Luckily, in times of broadband and fibre-optics we can press the relevant button and watch it all back at our own pace. If you’ve paid your money, you makes your choice – and there’s no shame in avoiding such a long stint on the couch if you’ve already coughed up.

But is donating ample justification for having a pop at the format of a show founded on what is undoubtedly a good cause? Or is it churlish to criticise the production values of a well-intentioned telly marathon?

Well – that depends. It depends on whether or not the stuff they put out in return for your charity is insultingly manipulative and needlessly shallow.

With the best will in the world, and with the complete understanding that telethons are fired by the contribution of funds from the viewer, this year’s Comic Relief was borderline unbearable. Unless my nostalgia blanket has crept up over my eyes, the BBC seem to have reneged on the deal somewhat, and the old structure we’re used to – wall-to-wall comedy interspliced with occasional and thorough information pieces – has been shipped out, wholesale. The appeals are now relentlessly repetitive, too short to leave any lasting understanding and the footage around them leaves a sour taste in the throat as a consequence.

One five minute sequence featuring Catherine Tate squawking, with barely any context, would be quickly followed, clumsily and offensively, by footage of a baby dying and endless requests for dollar from the overpaid likes of Claudia Winkleman and Davina McCall. Neither of whom are comedians. Both of whom are irritating at best, and hideously insincere, attention-grabbing slimers at worst. The sight of them on Comic Relief does Top of The Pops, infiltrating the stage when FloRida attempted to plug his new single (proceeds presumably going to his own coiffers), was breathtaking.

It was impossible to ignore them, in the company of the now beyond-irrelevant French and Saunders, mugging along during the whole of the TOTP sequence as they’d been placed right at the front of the audience. Had they been told to make arseholes of themselves by Production, or had they just grabbed the opportunity to blag screentime off their own backs? Either way, it was teeth-grindingly annoying, and added insult to the injury of the likes of Take That promoting non-charitable singles in the wake of shots of poverty-stricken children breathing their last breaths.

The idea of sending celebrities overseas to film VTs to show us where the money goes – or why it’s required – is essential to Comic Relief. There are some classic examples from the past. But this time round, despite Christine Bleakley’s good efforts on The One Show in the preceding week, the night itself concerned itself with a stream of superficial films which misappropriated extremely upsetting, shock images and all ended with the likes of Davina or Annie (bloody) Lennox weeping – as though that would help us to empathise. As though we were too stupid to empathise without seeing a familiar face, urging us to empathise. And the less said about Fearne Cotton fainting, the better.

I haven’t yet mentioned Simon Cowell. They had an appeal from Mr. Simon ‘Fuck You I’m Rich’ Cowell. Didn’t this idea ring a few alarm bells in pre-production? It’s one thing to have the media megalomaniac Jonathan Ross and his enormous salary presenting a slice of the show, and quite another having a shamelessly greedy arsehole like Cowell asking us – recently redundant, credit-crunch victims – for our cash, whether the appeal is genuine or not.

And speaking of Annie Lennox – it’s nice to see her crawl out and into the limelight following a media silence that seemed to last years. And now she’s back – just in time for Comic Relief and the release of her new album. Nice to see that the two happened to coincide.

Despite these howlers, Comic Relief improved over the course of the evening. James Corden was (I can’t believe I’m typing this) brilliant in his England team pep talk. The Celebrity Apprentice was excellent, with the trio of Dee, Carr and Ratner making it last year’s equal. Graham Norton and Alan Carr’s presentation was far better than the earlier stuff because of their lack of earnestness, their avoidance of faux-sincerity and their awareness of the incongruence between the comedy and the tragedy. To their credit, they got on with the job without crying their eyes out between links, then wiping their eyes for a mum-dance to a new release.

There’s got to be an argument for a more intelligent take on the charity telethon. Audiences’ viewing habits have changed and their knowledge of how editing and scheduling works is more developed than ever before. If the BBC learns that we’re not all reliant on Davina’s moodswings when it comes to making a decision on whether or not we donate, we might end up with a product that makes just as much money for the cause and doesn’t leave us feeling soiled and bemused. Here’s hoping.

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214 Responses to “Just a Thought: Comic Relief”

  1. Nick T Says:

    I think that Cr has an increasingly harder task. Us misty eyed forty somethings (ok me!) remember when our comedy heroes first cast off their scripted mantels and spoke to us as real people. Collaborating with each other in a (seemingly) unscripted few hours of joyous (?) fun all for a good cause. Now, years later, CR has alsoi to appeal tpo the younger “2 pints” generation. Delbert Wilkins is relegated like some tired old workhourse, to the depths of Africa and there was no sign of Griff or Mr Bean (I was very drunk so may have missed them if they did make an appearance). For me there were only 3 highlights. Armstronmg and Miller (sans Mitchell and Webb, only funny as long as they don’t write their own material) Catherine Tate and the French and Saunders Mamma Mia skit.
    I disagree with SH, I thought the James Cordeon football piece was stunningly unfunny…..
    I can’t mention the woeful Simon Cowell bit ….oh shit!

  2. Mel Says:

    So Fearne cotton fainted did she? what was thw matter?

    How much did they raise this year?

  3. Napoleon Says:

    I was baffled by the choice of presenters this year. I found Norton and Carr even more irritating than usual, and couldn’t understand why, as Nick says, the likes of Mr. Bean and Griff had been jettisoned in favour of light entertainment presenters. Fern fucking Britten? That Doctor fucking Who actor? Claudia bastard Winkle-stinking-winkleshitter?

    There wasn’t even the ‘edgy’ for kids bit towards the end of the night. Unless you count those overexposed wallies Horne and Corden showing us repeats of stuff we’ve just seen as ‘edgy’. I don’t. Were the Two Packets of Lager boys busy?

    Still, £57 million to good causes is a magnificent achievement. It’s just a shame we weren’t awarded with any comedy for our money. Instead we get crap like French and Saunders, crap like Outnumbered and a small boy slipping into a coma he did not recover from in front of our horrified eyes.

    Ha ha ha.

  4. Swineshead Says:

    Webb, Armstrong, Miller and Mitchell was pretty good. I don’t necessarily think a return to Gryffith Rhys Jones would be a good thing. But more comedians onstage presenting would improve things.

    The Mamma Mia section didn’t raise a single chuckle for me.

  5. Napoleon Says:

    A return to comedians presenting would be nice, what with this being a comedy night, like.

    I watched that French ‘n’ Saunders thing with a face like Hitler. Ditto Outnumbered and that crock of cocks starring Robbie Williams, the Walliams and the fat one who used to be funny on Shooting Stars.

  6. Mel Says:

    Sounds gripping. They had some of my money, but i am glad i was out exercising my right arm when this was on.

  7. Napoleon Says:

    Layabouts – Does your heart sink as much as mine does when you switch on The Wright Stuff and it’s Lowri Turner’s week behind the desk? The flappy mouthed bitch.

  8. Swineshead Says:

    The crapness of the comedy would’ve been fine if it hadn’t been overshadowed by the non-stop appeals. About five minutes of comedy for 55 minutes of badly edited death footage soundtracked by Snow Patrol ain’t a great return.

    I watched Comic Relief in a rage – which isn’t how it’s meant to be, damn it!

  9. Swineshead Says:

    Napoleon – YES. But that gay bloke’s being quite funny. The ‘thin fascist’ routine came out of nowhere and had me laughing out loud.

  10. Napoleon Says:

    Mel – I, too, ended up donating money. It was that dying boy that did it. Talk about manipulation. Even the presenters had to issue a half-arsed apology before showing that film … fucking ‘orrible.

  11. Nick T Says:

    Catherine Tate as old woman ripping up the cheque WAS funny.
    I was funny as I, drunkenly, tried to climb the stairs to bed.

  12. Swineshead Says:

    I sent a fiver by text, which then sent twice in some technological mishap before my disbelieving eyes. So that’s two malaria nets with my name on them.

    Did you see the bit where Davina went overseas and was shown a dying boy in an incubator and she reacted with the kind of outburst you’d expect if she’d been told her favourite Big Brother contestant was getting evicted?

    What the hell were they thinking relying so heavily on someone so unsuited to the job?

  13. Mel Says:

    Well, i think that they do actually do good work, but i find the format a bit old now. They still managed a good wedge of cash, even in a recession, so they cannot complain.

    What’s all this about thin facists? was this the funny bit in this show?

  14. Swineshead Says:

    Nick – it’s ten past ten in the A.M. – would you sober up, please?

  15. Swineshead Says:

    Mel – have I said that they don’t do good work? I went to great pains to point that out, for Christ’s sake.

  16. Mel Says:

    So this year, the comics got the relief? As in the evening off?

    I bet fourstar’s piss is boiling as we speak.

  17. Nick T Says:

    Is the gay bloke of which you speak Alan Carr?
    I was enjoying him later on but athe power of the grape had gripped me by then. I didn’t like him when I first saw him on the box but have warmed to him of late. He is an amusing chap on the old Twatter too.

  18. Nick T Says:

    I hardly sobered up the whole weekendz.
    I sacked a plasterer yesterday morning!

  19. Napoleon Says:

    Swineshead – I saw all of it. Every last stinking second. Catherine Tate’s old woman was predictable, and Davina in Africa was a disgrace.

    AND WHERE WAS LOADSOFMONEY?

  20. Swineshead Says:

    Nick – I was talking about the gay bloke on The Wright Stuff at the moment. Scott something.

  21. Mel Says:

    Easy SH, i was just saying that i have a lot of admiration for the projects that they do run. In essence, i am agreeing with you.

  22. Swineshead Says:

    Good essence, Mel. I like the essence.

    I feel three minutes given over to a performance of The Funky Gibbon would’ve been more entertaining than seeing Minty off Eastenders’s penis. But sadly Oddie’s in hospital, so The Goodies had to cancel. I presume.

  23. breeks Says:

    i have never watched Comic Relief in now a good number of years living in the uk. i watched it on friday with cheap prosecco in one hand, a forkful of well tasty food (cooked by me, obv) in the other and a slowly rising sense of disbelief at the chunderous mess of ‘entertainment’- based begging that was going on before my very (slightly bloodshot) eyes.

    i laughed at the football stuff with cordon which must’ve meant it was funny cause i didn’t get half of it. mr breeks was laughing, that probably contributed to my chuckles. that and rio ferdinand’s lips. made for laughing at, those fleshy waves of awfulness.

    anyway, comic relief. not comic, no relief and i donated NOTHING.

    at home in perth we had telethon on channel seven once a year – it was on for 24 hours, it was mint as a kid as you’d sleep in your lounge room in your sleeping bag watching the z-list perth celebrities (community tv channel sports presenters, children’s party entertainers, similar ilk) sing and be shit. that was tops.

    that and the 40 hour famine. sanctioned mainlining of barley sugar. brilliant. now THAT’S fundraising.

  24. Mel Says:

    Oddie’s in hospital?

    Oh no – what is it? when did this happen?

  25. myopiniononstuff Says:

    I felt for the family of brothers who had to put up with Annie Lennox for a day. As if they haven’t suffered enough, they get some Scotch knitwear fetishist forcing them into awkward embraces for the camera.

  26. Swineshead Says:

    Did you listen to Adam & Joe? That ‘a kneelin’ ox’ text was from yours truly…

    *basks in glory*

    Oddie’s having another one of his turns. History of depression. Poor old sod. I like Bill.

  27. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Am I the only person who finds the Fritzl picture on BBC News fucking hilarious? Fritzl: The Human Folder.

  28. Napoleon Says:

    Oddie’s in hospital? That’s a bit of a bugger. I was looking forward to seeing The Goodies coming on in grass skirts, blacked-up faces and bones through their noses getting chased by a big Dougal.

    There was fuck all I was expecting. No Loadsofmoney, no John Cleese coming on with his little Spanish monkey man, no Jim Davidson, no Big Yin talking about ‘wee jobbies’ and welding in Glasgow in the early ’70s. Bloody rubbish. There wasn’t even a bit where that fat unpleasant man from Liverpool off of the ’80s comes on and shouts at you about Mrs. Thatcher. OR that other one that pretends to be a cockney and talks about fannies.

    A pack of arses.

  29. Mel Says:

    Oh dear. I like Bill too, and even more so since he started doing Springwatch. Get well soon Bill. (In case he might read this).

  30. Napoleon Says:

    Swineshead – Your brush with obscure digital radio fame is NOTHING. I once rang up Talk Radio to complain about Jesus Freaks. They cut me off. Bastards.

  31. breeks Says:

    bill’s just feeling a bit odd.

    *choke*

    he’ll come good(ie) soon.

    *dies*

  32. Mel Says:

    Breeks, with jokes like that, it seems that you shoujld have been on our teevees on Friday…

  33. Clarry Says:

    Hello all.

    I wondered how many of the dying children died whilst the nurses were tending to the fainting Fearne Cotton. Bloody ridiculous.

    SH – I was irritated as I sniggered at James bloody Corden too. I also thought that the Ricky Gervais thing was mildly amusing, well certainly better than the faux Africa trip. Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders should watch it back, weep then hang up their comedy hats forever. The gurning whilst being in the audience of Top in the Pops (as you quite rightly pointed out SH) was just lazy.

    We did some donating – David was hijacked in TK Maxx at the tills and was cajoled into adding 10 squids onto the bill. I bet Sainsbury’s are feeling a bit smug – they raised £9 million for the cause.

    P.S. Stewart Lee’s comedy vehicle tonight. Yippee!!

    *Hopes you all watch Red Riding and are ready to talk about it*

  34. Clarry Says:

    watched

  35. Napoleon Says:

    Did anyone else notice the Simon Cowell bit made him look a bit like a holy saviour man? Cowell goes to rubbish tip full of feral tramp kids, Cowell conjures up mini-bus and, yea, feral kids are saved. All hail the Cowell.

    I had to remind m’self he’s actually a grasping cunt who’s made his millions off of the back of shit like Jerome and Flynnson.

  36. isntit Says:

    I was at that TOTP thing. It was even worse in real life. I mean, you think, “Wow, Top of the Pops! Finally I get to experience first-hand what I watched every Friday night as a squealing infant!!” – and then you suddenly realise how shit it is, and you’re forever enshrined in archive footage of pointless wankers dancing in pseudo-comic arse-out trollop dances. Your vaguely-embarrassing “Oh wow, someone might see me!” turns into “Oh fucking fuck, someone might bloody *see* me.” But you can’t cut and run. T

    Fuck.

  37. Mel Says:

    Hi Clarry, i certainly did my homework this weekend.

    I have mentioned previously how ridiculous that sainsburys tie in with the strawberries was. It made me very angry.

    Did Fearne faint because she had starved herself to dempnstrate her empathy with the plight of all African Childruns?

  38. Swineshead Says:

    I wondered how many of the dying children died whilst the nurses were tending to the fainting Fearne Cotton. Bloody ridiculous.

    In fairness, I think it was her cameraman who sorted her out – but she can’t have helped the more pressing situation in the room…

    Watched Red Riding. It’s a complex beast, that series. Considine was brilliant.

  39. isntit Says:

    I was at that TOTP thing. It was even worse in real life. I mean, you think, “Wow, Top of the Pops! Finally I get to experience first-hand what I watched every Friday night as a squealing infant!!” – and then you suddenly realise how shit it is, and you’re forever enshrined in archive footage of pointless wankers dancing in pseudo-comic arse-out trollop dances. Your vaguely-embarrassing “Oh wow, someone might see me!” turns into “Oh fucking fuck, someone might bloody *see* me.” But you can’t cut and run. THEY LOCK YOU IN.

    Fuck. What have I don?

  40. Swineshead Says:

    isntit – You actually went???

    What were you thunking?

  41. isntit Says:

    Oh wow, nice, I accidentally posted twice. Fail.

  42. Napoleon Says:

    They should have had Lenny Henry with diarrhoea, shitting into a bucket. I’d have found that a lot funnier than French ‘n’ Saunders.

  43. isntit Says:

    @swineshead Yes I bloody went. I work there. Someone on the floor sneaked me tickets. What can I say? Seemed like a good idea at the time.

    Used to work for TOS also. Can I just say, Christine Bleakley is awesome. kthxbai

  44. Swineshead Says:

    isntit – Blame WordPress.

    Right, I’m off for a bit. I’ll be back at noon when you’re all at lunch.

  45. Napoleon Says:

    I love Christine Bleakley.

  46. Clarry Says:

    “Wow, Top of the Pops! Finally I get to experience first-hand what I watched every Friday night as a squealing infant!!”

    Isntit – How old are you then? TOTP moving from a Thursday to a Friday was the beginning of the end.

    Mel/SH – It’s complex but v good dontcha think? I think the last one will tie up a lot of loose ends and it will become much more clear.

    Volume (ads v prog) still annoying eh?

  47. Swineshead Says:

    And sort out a meeting with the goddess Bleakely for me and Napoleon. Thanks.

  48. breeks Says:

    i have to admit i left the room at the TOTP juncture.

    U2 and Oasis? really?

    fuck’s sake.

    FUCK.

    today i seem to be quite angry.

  49. myopiniononstuff Says:

    And get her to bring back ‘Let Me Entertain You’ before I dos omething stupid like get a job. It was good.

  50. Mel Says:

    i liked 1980 much better than 1974 (?). I thought the direction in the first oe got a bit art house at times.

    Quite brutalin both cases, and as always, Considine was brilliant.

  51. Clarry Says:

    Why did they have Noel Fielding presenting TOTP. That was strange/awkward.

    U2 couldn’t even be arsed to turn up. That song ‘Put on Your Boots’ is dreadful.

  52. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Clarry – It’s entertaining watching Bono punch himself in the face though, isn’t it?

  53. Nick T Says:

    Coincidentaly Oasis and U2 have bothe “written” a song with only one chord. I wonder if it’s the same one?
    SH, your spotify link didn’t work.

  54. Clarry Says:

    Yes second one miles better Mel. First one was almost unintelligible in parts. That bent copper is creepy.

  55. Mel Says:

    Oh, and a great tip for the adverts Clarry – watch 4OD – no adverts, not even at the bit before it starts when you get the idents. Lovely.

  56. Napoleon Says:

    I didn’t watch the TOTP bit. I figured the news would be funnier and more entertaining. And it was! The German chancellor’s tiny. Like one of them little fellas off of Willow.

  57. Mel Says:

    Which bent copper? the ginger one?

  58. Clarry Says:

    I hate Bono with a passion. Punching himself in the face is annoying because a) I’d rather be doing it and b) he thinks that makes him edgy

  59. Napoleon Says:

    This adverts being too noisy issue can be rectified by using some form of recording device. I believe such machines have been about since the late 1970s.

  60. Mel Says:

    i thought punching oneself in the face is often associated with mental unbalance?

  61. Clarry Says:

    Good tip, thanks Mel.

    Yes the gingery one with a tash.

  62. Clarry Says:

    How does recording a programme even out the sound Naps?

  63. Mel Says:

    He was right weird. the creepy ginger one.

    Another advantage of no ads is that it takes 1hr40 instead of 2 hours too.

  64. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Clarry – I think he feels it’s symbolic athough, not having the superior facilties of understanding Bono possesses, I guess we’ll never know.

  65. Napoleon Says:

    Clarry – By fast-forwarding through the adverts? That way you get to watch just the programme at the volume you want.

    I can’t believe I’ve just had to explain that.

  66. breeks Says:

    i despise oasis and u2.

    despise.

    hate.

  67. Clarry Says:

    I understand the concept of a video recorder you nobber. From your earlier comment I thought you were suggesting something far more advanced. I don’t have a video recorder or Sky plus or a box thingy. I just have to leap for the remote and put it on mute.

  68. Mel Says:

    who was it that released the comedy record this year then? was it as good as the Stonk?

  69. Napoleon Says:

    Clarry – You don’t have a recording device? In 2009? Was it all fields when you were a girl? Do you listen to music and complain you can’t hear the words? Is it all noise?

    What was it like to see Spitfires and Hurricanes tearing across the skies, fighting the Luftwaffe back in the good old days?

  70. isntit Says:

    @Clarry – I’m quite young I suppose. Define young. But more importantly, I have forgotten everything before the age of 18. I feel I can safely assume I watched TOTP though, as *everyone* watched TOTP. I bet the fucking Queen watched TOTP.

    And now it is gone.

    That is all.

    P.S. Noel Fielding is super-hot. If only he weren’t dead behind the eyes.

  71. Excelsior! Says:

    Clarry – if you don’t have sky, invest in a freeview box with recording ability. Freedom from the schedules is brilliant and less fiddely the fannying around with tapes like it’s still the 80’s. Give the adverts the laugh as well.

  72. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Noel Fielding has a face that could cut slate. And I’m not saying that out of jealousy.

  73. breeks Says:

    noel fielding has appeal, unclear tho’ it is.

    fact.

  74. Excelsior! Says:

    I Like Noel Fielding. I like the Boosh. Not so much the third series tho..

  75. Clarry Says:

    I used to have one, but I don’t see the point now. Don’t even know if you can still buy them… I also tend to fall into the trap of recording everything and become a slave to the telly in order to get caught up with it all. Plus who needs to watch telly when you can come to WWM read the review, generally discover you’ve saved an hour of your life, and then talk about something completely unconnected for the rest of the day.

  76. Napoleon Says:

    I can’t remember the last time I watched adverts. I record everything on commercial telly on my futuristic V+ box. It’s ace until the box fucks up and doesn’t register you’ve pressed stop after fast-forwarding through the adverts. When this happens you find out who did the killing in Midsomer Murders a shit load quicker than you’d expected to.

  77. myopiniononstuff Says:

    I prefer tinned peas to the frozen variety. Especially with fish.

  78. Clarry Says:

    I like NF, but couldn’t see why they wheeled him out for CR TOTP. That was a bit lazy. They were thinking ‘Who do the kids like? Hey I know, let’s get the glittery, pointy-faced fellow that all the boys want to be and all the girls want to be with…’

  79. Napoleon Says:

    Tinned peas (or any tinned veg, for that matter) are ‘orrible. Especially those ghastly marrowfat fuckers.

  80. Clarry Says:

    He couldn’t even pretend to be interested in the acts. To be a TOTP presenter you need to convince the audience that you like the acts, even if they are shit.

  81. myopiniononstuff Says:

    I prefer tinned peas but will respect your opinion.

  82. breeks Says:

    when we were poor my mum used to cook tinned peas on the hob. in the tin.

    then later when we were rich but children of jesus a cupful of frozen peas was a summertime treat.

  83. Clarry Says:

    Hey my mum used to give me a cup full of frozen peas too Breeks. I thought I was the only one…

  84. breeks Says:

    if we were really well heaved we’d get minted ones.

  85. Mel Says:

    You lot are odd. Peas are wrong. Always. Fact

  86. breeks Says:

    heaved. noice.

    behaved.

    as in well.

  87. Napoleon Says:

    A cup of frozen peas? What a delicious-sounding summer treat. Who needs ice cream when you’ve got a cup of peas, eh? I feel neglected now.

  88. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Frozen peas remind me of the hilarious scene in classic sitcom Mork & Mindy when Mork, an alien from outer space, served a solid block of frozen peas to Mindy because he didn’t know how to cook human food. She wasn’t happy.

    That scene wouldn’t have worked with tinned peas, though I do prefer the taste of tinned peas to the frozen variety, respectful of Napoleon’s preference for frozen peas.

  89. myopiniononstuff Says:

    It’s a matter of personal taste.

  90. Excelsior! Says:

    I worry about fast forwarding adverts sometimes. I suspect that advertising execs, having realised that many consumers now fast forward the breaks, have designed the adverts to enter our minds as some kind of *30 speed data stream.
    Conspiracy yeah.
    Yeah?
    Yeah.

  91. Napoleon Says:

    I like those wee little frozen peas with the funny foreign name. They’re like normal peas, only smaller.

  92. Sue De Nymh Says:

    They didn’t leave Moyles at the top of the mountain, therefore they got no money from me this year.
    .
    Cowell doing the “please donate” to camera and being so committed to the cause that he smirkingly failed to memorise the donation phone number was obscene.
    .
    I hated every minute of it almost as much as I hated myself for watching it.

  93. Excelsior! Says:

    Petit Poi?

  94. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Excelsior – ten past eleven, according to my clock.

  95. Mel Says:

    I thought that you hated foreign food nappers?

  96. Napoleon Says:

    I’ve just realised my previous statement was a lie. I do watch adverts in the daytime. Car insurance, debt councelling, ambulance chasers, help with funeral expenses, discount carpet warehouses … all human life is there.

  97. Mel Says:

    And stannah stairlifts at that time of the day as well, i’d wager. And those equity release mortgages.

  98. Napoleon Says:

    Mel – I’m not keen on funny foreign muck, no. I prefer traditional English dishes such as Beef Madras, Chicken Kievs and Spaghetti Bolognese.

  99. Mel Says:

    Clarry – you are not alone in finding the ads in Red Riding annoying. It seems thay have also got on Andrew Collins tits as well.

  100. Napoleon Says:

    You’d think Collins – being famous and therefore a millionaire – could afford Sky+, wouldn’t you?

  101. Swineshead Says:

    He’s got Sky+. He’s mentioned it before.
    Weird – being a self-confessed wooly-liberal I’d have thought he’d avoid Murdoch’s enterprise and go for Virgin Media.

  102. Mel Says:

    Well, apparently he went straight for the DVD today.

  103. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Perhaps he could do a countdown of the 100 Greatest Recording Devices?

  104. Napoleon Says:

    Collins has been no help with my fish finger query, I notice. Does anyone else think the fish fingers Fist of Fun’s Richard Herring is eating on Collins’s site look a cut above your Bird’s Eye standard? I do, and the lack of confirmation is driving me mad.

  105. Nick T Says:

    I saw that Red Riding Clarry. I liked the bit where they cut the wolf up and hey presto, out steps granny, still alive.
    A tour de force!!

  106. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Harry Ramsden’s is shit compared to Birdseye if you go to the takeaway bit. What are you thinking?

  107. Napoleon Says:

    Dave – The takeaway bit was always lovely when I used to go Harry Ramsden’s. I used to get two ‘addocks and it drove my grandad bonkers. “Why can’t you ‘ave fish and bloody chips like the bloody rest of us?” he’d shout, the old bastard. Little did he know I only asked for two fish because I knew it got on his nerves. The moment I started using my own money, I started ordering fish ‘n’ chips just like everybody else. Take that, you bigoted olf fart!

  108. Swineshead Says:

    Checked your comment on Collins’s site, Nappers. Nice to see you ‘arselicking celebrities’ again, you bloody hypocrite.

  109. myopiniononstuff Says:

    BEEF WELLINGTON ON THIS MORNING ALERT!

  110. Napoleon Says:

    I wasn’t arselicking celebrities, you celebrity arselicking, twittering groupie. I was asking who made them fish fingers in the photo. They look like the best fish fingers in the world and I want some.

    Not that I’m ever likely to find out what they are, mind …

  111. breeks Says:

    i never had a fishfinger sandwich till i came to this great isle.

    i’ve been reliably informed that if it’s not made with squishy white bread it can’t be called a fishfinger sandwich.

    also – advice please. 3 people share a house, all are on the lease, one is recently arrived and now the other two want him to leave. can this be asked of him? or must we push him?

  112. myopiniononstuff Says:

    HORNE ON THIS MORNING EATING BEEF WELLINGTON ALERT!

  113. Napoleon Says:

    Breeks – You need to give him two month’s notice, if memory serves. Or is it one month? I used to know all about tenancy law after suing a landlord who had the audacity to steal my security deposit. Bankrupted the bastard and he was forced to sell his precious little house to cover his massive legal costs. Ended up topping himself in a caravan.

    Yessssss!

  114. breeks Says:

    we just don’t want him to live with us anymore. he’s been here about 2.5 months.

  115. Excelsior! Says:

    What are his particular foibles?

  116. piqued Says:

    Breeks, shit on his pillow

  117. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Breeks – if he’s being antisocial or breaking any of the rules on his contract (noise, etc) then your landlord might be able to help.

    I shared a house with an alcoholic girl from Leeds who used to bang on my door at 5am on a work day because she was alcoholic and from Leeds. She punched me in the face for singing over P.Diddy’s I’ll Be Missing You in a funny voice once as well. She was thrown out two weeks later.

  118. Napoleon Says:

    I can’t remember if you can get rid of someone on a six-month lease. Isn’t there some kind of landlord’s advice site?

    Or have you thought of hiding faeces under his floorboards?

  119. breeks Says:

    he’s unfunny & not invisible enough & messy & a loud snorer & unfunny.

    and from scunthorpe.

  120. Excelsior! Says:

    I think you’ll find its spelt sCUNThorpe

  121. breeks Says:

    he’s just….meh. poor dude. poor meh dude…

  122. Napoleon Says:

    A friend of mine got rid of someone in the ’60s by hiding shit in his room. You should definitely consider the shit option.

    Still no word on these bloody fish fingers, I see.

  123. breeks Says:

    i might have to. he’s bit like shit on a shoe. sticks. smelly. unwanted.

  124. Napoleon Says:

    How’s about chicken breasts? Get a couple o’ them buggers under the floorboards and he’ll be out in a week.

  125. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Breeks – but how would you rationalise your decision to him without putting the sod on suicide watch?

    “You’ll have to go”

    “Why? Is it the music I’ve been playing, I’ll turn it down?”

    “No”

    “Me not doing the dishes last night?”

    “Not Really”

    “Then what. What have I done?”

    “You’re just, well, Meh and unfunny…and you smell and stick like shit.”

    “Oh.”

    Please record the conversation.

  126. piqued Says:

    A good one is to pop prawns behind the radiator. They smell like fucking death when they go off and because they’re rather bijouz, hard to trace

  127. Nick T Says:

    or SCUMthorpe ha ha ha HA!

    Can he cook like in Robin’s Nest or something?

    (see what I did then?)

    (didn’t think so)

  128. Nick T Says:

    Pauline Quirk in new daytime police series, as a detective SHOCKER

    You couldn’t mak………

  129. Who Says:

    Dave, being punched in the face for singing over P Diddy’s I’ll Be Missing You in a funny voice sounds like a small punishment. You got off lightly, I reckons. Count your blessings.

  130. breeks Says:

    moos – that’s about it, as it happens.

    nice isn’t enough.

  131. Napoleon Says:

    Prawns is good. I suppose you could use any shellfish, couldn’t you? A few mussels in his wardrobe, the odd lobster under the floorboards. Add in excrement and chicken breaths and the stench would be unbearable.

  132. Napoleon Says:

    That’s right! ‘Chicken breaths’. I believe Waitrose sells ’em.

  133. breeks Says:

    all these are grat ideas but for the fact i still live here.

  134. Excelsior! Says:

    I can imagine Waitrose selling chicken breaths. Used in making foams i believe.

  135. piqued Says:

    ‘chicken breaths’

    Aren they known for halitosis?

  136. piqued Says:

    ‘Aren’

    Great word that, great

  137. Excelsior! Says:

    Do you live with your significant other aswell Breeks? If so, horrible, violent sex in the communal areas. Rather off putting over his cornflakes i would think.

  138. breeks Says:

    i was in year 7 with a dude called ‘aren’.

    he was about 5ft and went out with my mate justine, who, at 12, was 5’10”.

    broadminded, we were. and limited in choice.

  139. Nick T Says:

    He sounds like a fine chap Breeks.
    Have YOU considered moving and leaving Him?

  140. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Who – little did I know it was a song that reminded her of a departed family member. In her stupor she smacked me right in the chops before proceeding to sit on me whilst screaming. I still managed to finish the chorus though.

    Does your one do that, Breeks?

  141. piqued Says:

    Great word, great guy, then

    GR8

  142. breeks Says:

    no. it’s OUR house.

    he must go.

  143. breeks Says:

    moos – unfortunately no, he doesn’t. he doesn’t have the personality or imagination.

    it’s a difficult situation. he’s extremely nice, just annoying and dull. he has cankles, too.

  144. breeks Says:

    i can’t stop playing fishing on my iphone.

    HELP ME.

    *impales a maggot*

  145. Napoleon Says:

    Can’t you hide insects in his fishcakes? Beetles and wasps and what-have-you? Does he eat fishcakes?

  146. Who Says:

    Dave, I never thought I’d be able to say this about you, but you’re a trooper. Now, had I been sitting on you, you’d have managed about two words before being crushed to death.

  147. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Who – Why would you not regard me as a trooper? I’m hurt.

  148. piqued Says:

    NC, I eat fishcakes, and as an eater of fishcakes I can tell you that if I found maggots and wasps and beetles in mine I’d leave

    Breeks, problemo solvedo

  149. Napoleon Says:

    Dave – I reckon it’s because you usually come across as an arsehole.

  150. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Napoleon – Do I? Why?

  151. breeks Says:

    hmmm. that’d be practically cruel and unkind. i’d prefer to do it emotionally.

    in all honesty it’s a crap situ as his utter inoffensiveness contributes to his offensiveness. poor guy.

    he must leave.

  152. Mel Says:

    Breeks – WTF are cankles?

    Also, check your contract. If you are jointly and severally liable (as is the case in most contracts) if you force him out you will be responsible for paying his share of the bills. possibly best just to have a quiet word, and explain that you feel he should live nearer his work, and possibly his specialist (for the cankles) but before he goes would he bo so kind as to find someone to replace him in his room. Tell him it is not him it is you.

    I definitley only advise hiding rotting excrement in a building that you don’t actually have to live in. All boys are always too keen to start sewing prawns in the curtains without thinking that you have to share the same air.

  153. Napoleon Says:

    Piqued – I would too. Similarly, I’d pack my bags if I discovered my room housed secret stashes of rotten meat and shit.

  154. breeks Says:

    mel – much appreciated, the time you put into your response. i’ll have to enlighten you on a few issues.

    cankles – http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=cankles – somehow worse on boys.

    he moved here to be nearer his work.

    no way could someone you’re kicking out be given responsibility for finding their replacement. asking for trouble.

    it is me, not him, inasmuch as me can’t put up with him. nor can my partner in crime, housemate-b. hmmm.

    wise words on the prawn-curtaining.

    (still iphone fishing, btw. been 4 hrs now. omg).

  155. Excelsior! Says:

    DO you live with a significant other Breeks? Couldnt you just tell 3rd wheel that you want to live alone together, nothing wrong with him yadda yadda, but you just want your space.

  156. breeks Says:

    excelsior – i don’t. no. we are prob being mean but you can’t help who annoys you.

    i need no longer see his whisker-ends in my bathroom sink. please god, no. SWILL YOU FUCKER, SWILL!

  157. Napoleon Says:

    Dave – Where to begin? Your nocturnal masturbatory activities? Your pathetic addiction to children’s televison? Your racism? Your paedophile face? Your inability to hold down even the shoddiest of jobs, hence forcing you back to Scotchland with your tail between your legs?

    Face it, Dave, you’re an arsehole.

  158. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Napoleon – Well, thank you for your honesty. I suppose I am an arsehole when you put it like that.

  159. Napoleon Says:

    Glad to be of service, Dave. Any time you need reminding of what an arsehole you are, you come to Uncle Ben … sorry, Uncle Napoleon.

  160. Who Says:

    Does an unhealthy obssession with tinned peas count as a direct sympton of arseholeness? Might as well, I suppose, as it’s Dave.

    *adds to list*

  161. Mel Says:

    Ugh cankles. I do not see many people with those these days, as everyone here cycles. Oh, except the British tourists.

    Hmm, but you do need to make sure you have someone to replace him if the contract is jointly and severally liable. Maybe we have to hope that they move his job. Does he have friends in that London yet, or does he stay around the house like a bad smell? If the latter, enroll him in salsa classes, and hope he meets people that he would rather share a space with. It is a long term strategy.

    Or get a Pig Board. We had one of these in our flat at uni, and it was inteded to be if someone had left their plates in the kitchen again that they would get written up, and the person who had the most at the end of the month had to get the beers in. however, within hours of it going up, it had descended into random bitching and paranoia resultuing in all of us moving out. You could get yyour own pig bored, and just write his name and give the reason for being him on the board, in all of the available space. Maybe he will get the message.

    With regard to fishing, i usually have to interrupt my surfing for a tight dealine, so find yourself something really pressing to do.

  162. breeks Says:

    i am having a shower. it’s the only thing i have left to get me off this fishing drug.

  163. Mel Says:

    Good idea. Maybe you will get distracted by cleaning all the whiskers in the bath first off of your flatmate.

    I hope the water doesn’t reinforce your addiction by making you think of all fish.

  164. Excelsior! Says:

    I liked your foreign word confusion joke earlier Dave. Anyone who makes shit jokes like that can’t be all bad.

  165. myopiniononstuff Says:

    I’m going through something of an epiphany as of late, Excelsior! I’m an arsehole.

  166. breeks Says:

    i have come through the other (shower) side and am studiously ignoring the fishing-phone.

    it is evil.

    *catfish!carp!sailfish!pike!*

  167. Napoleon Says:

    Excelsior – I wouldn’t bank on that. Dave spent twenty four hours constructing a DIY deviant’s sex doll off of toilet rolls, plastic bags, garden hoses and cut-outs of Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s face. No amount of hilarious foreign word confusion jokes can erase the smear on Dave’s character that that kind of filthy and suspicious behaviour has brought down upon him.

    And he lives with his mother.

  168. breeks Says:

    naps – you make dave sound like he deserves a blue peter badge.

  169. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Napoleon – I’m not Norman fucking Bates.

  170. Napoleon Says:

    I don’t deny his ingenuity, Breeks. It’s what he does with that creativity that disgusts me. Instead of looking for a cure for The Cancer, he wastes his talents making peculiar sex contraptions that allow him to have ‘virtual sex’ in the dark with her wot played Xena: Warrior Princess. He should be ashamed of himself.

  171. breeks Says:

    dunno naps. better he has virtual sex with a virtual person than real sex with a real person. a real person like you.

  172. Napoleon Says:

    Dave – You may as bloody well be, you psychopathic, half-blind little pervert. I fear for your parents, quite frankly. Now you’ve moved back home (in disgrace, after proving to the whole world what a failure you are), it wouldn’t entirely surprise me if you ended up wearing their skins as clothes. Especially seeing as you can’t afford to buy new clothes, you feckless, benefits-scrounging parasite.

  173. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Napoleon – I don;t like Buffy, I don’t like Star Trek and I definitely don’t rate Lucy Lawless in Xena (she looks like a tranny). If I was to make my own ‘DIY deviant’s love doll’ it would be of Moira Stewart sorting her taxes under a staircase.

  174. ugeine Says:

    I like Star Trek. It’s the funniest American Sitcom ever, apart from friends.

  175. Excelsior! Says:

    Could make a fortune catering for the specialist tastes of fat sweaty sci-fi fans though. Elaborate sex recepticle, personalised to suit your particular perversion.

  176. Napoleon Says:

    Dave – You only have to look at your washed-out, wet-sack, child abuser’s face to see it’s got ‘I love Star Trek, Buffy and Xena’ written all over it. And ‘I hang around outside primary schools’ too. They shouldn’t let rodents like you live, you perverted little turd shifter.

  177. myopiniononstuff Says:

    Napoleons – In that case I’m off to weather proof a fence.

  178. Napoleon Says:

    Community payback order, is it? Shame on you.

  179. piqued Says:

    I’ll tell you what, that was better out than in. I don’t think my tummy is alright

  180. Mel Says:

    Perhaps Breeks should get piqued to visit her flatmate at work, and put all turds in his desk? that way she wont have to breathe it in, and you boys get all your revenge fantasies over and done with.

  181. Swineshead Says:

    Look – Piqued’s back!

    Where everybody knows your name… la la la la

    It’s like Cheers.

    I’ve heard that prawn trick before – surely not the best idea in a shared house though? It’d leak through the wall, the stench.

    Speaking of stenches, I once took mind-bending hallucinogen, LSD and went round my mate’s house. The stench in her flat was horrific. The next day we found out her neighbour had been lying dead in his bed for a month beforehand and his skin had turned black through decomposition.

    The worst part is I almost forced the lock on the dead neighbours door thinking, in my addled state, that his bedsit was the bathroom. I’m quite glas i didn’t see a mush of blackened corpse when I was tripping my nuts off on a Bart Simpson.

  182. Swineshead Says:

    ‘glad’ – not ‘glas’.

    I’m not ‘glas’.

  183. Napoleon Says:

    Been having a shit, have you? That’ll be because you gorged y’self on raw fish over the weekend, I expect. No doubt you’re riddled with lice and other watery parasites now.

    Try asking for it cooked next time, you flatulent boob.

  184. piqued Says:

    HAY GYZ

  185. Napoleon Says:

    Before my dog kicked the bucket, one of my biggest fears was coming across a blackened and rotting corpse on one of our walks. A friend of my mum’s took his dog out, and discovered the decomposing head of an Indian restaurant owner who’d been killed in one of those preposterous Asian family blood feud things. I’m glad I didn’t find that.

  186. Napoleon Says:

    You could misconstrue that last comment as ‘Hey Gays’. Unless that’s what you meant, like?

  187. Mel Says:

    Swines – didn’t she notice a massive increase in the fly population at that time? They would have been very obvious before the smell kicked in.

  188. piqued Says:

    I think SH may have stumbled into an idea regarding Breeks and her neighbour?

    No NC, not a shit, one of those stove-top fartings that could mask the piquancy of a mass grave. It’s quite horrific and has led to complaints that I’m countering by threatening more.

  189. Napoleon Says:

    Sounds like the sort of fart you’d get out of a St. Bernard if you fed it nothing but brussels sprouts and boiled beetroot for a week. Surely you’re breaking some sort of ‘elf ‘n’ safety law by farting at work, aren’t you?

  190. Nick T Says:

    Hello every bloody peeps!
    Breeks, you could suggest he (the cuckoo in your nest) moves in with young Dave here…

  191. Excelsior! Says:

    It could be turned into a sitcom….

  192. Napoleon Says:

    Nick – Is that his kebab shop owner ‘Kebabros’? I like the way he says, ‘Innit everybody hello innit peeps innit kebab chilli sauce’. Then, when you can’t take much more mirth, he gets out this wad of money and says he’s got plenty more where that came from.

    Or something.

  193. Mel Says:

    Nappers – without a doubt the best way to make dogs fart offensively is to feed them tripe. Smells bad going in and a million times worse coming back out. If you have a sense of smell at all, i recommend never feeding the dog tripe.

    Also works on grandfathers. My mum used to give him packet and tripe for a treat. It was only a treat for them, and the house stank for days.

    I am not a fan of tripe, in case you couldn’t have guessed.

  194. myopiniononstuff Says:

    ttp://img517.imageshack.us/my.php?image=dave1r.jpg

    I think I’m an attractive young man, pictured here enjoying the cool sea breeze. I’m not ashamed.

  195. piqued Says:

    HAY NC R U A RAYSEST 4 SAYINGS THAT

  196. Nick T Says:

    Naps- No, you’re thinking of that Mr Chumley Warner from that Armstrong and Miller RAF sketch

  197. Napoleon Says:

    Mel – I know this. I used to feed tripe to the dogs in the dog kennel I and Swineshead’s idle brother worked at, and their farts seemed to erupt from the very bowels of hell itself.

  198. Mel Says:

    I am not an advocate of waste at all, and I am as tight as all arseholes, so nothing goes to waste in my house. But tripe is an offal step too far. I am happy to eat sweetbreads (testicles) but i wouldn’t give tripe to my worst enemy.

  199. piqued Says:

    ‘so nothing goes to waste in my house’

    what do you with your plops?

  200. Swineshead Says:

    Mel – it was a double locked door in a set of bedsits. I went round a few times before the police were called and the stench got worse and worse. She attempted to smother the pong with joss sticks, unsuccessfully.

    But you may disbelieve my true story, if you wish.

  201. Napoleon Says:

    Nick – Am I? Was he the one that used to make jokes about the working class, then get out a wad of kebab meat and say he had loads of it and he was smoking a fag because he was a pauper and those people know no better?

    Or was that ‘Loadsofmoney’?

  202. Mel Says:

    Piqued – composting toilet.

    Swines – I am not disbelieving. A similar thing happened to my sister outlaw, who lived above a dead guy. She started to notice the flies, but thought it must have just been a bad year for them. The dead guy had to start leaching through to the flat below before anyone did anything. I was astounded at the excuses that people think up to justify unusual occurrences. But Joss sticks urgh.

  203. Nick T Says:

    Kyles show is actually sad this afternoon……

    Naps, standard …. 😐

  204. Mel Says:

    how come Kyle is on in the afternoons now? He used to be on after GMTV back in my day.

  205. Swineshead Says:

    Oh christ. He melted through the floorboards?

    It was wintry when this happened in deepest darkest Boston… so I suppose the dead fellow just sort of crusted up.

    Apparently when the police broke the door down, one puked on the spot and the other rummaged around in his packed lunch and proceeded to eat a banana sandwich. Nice cop, nasty cop.

  206. piqued Says:

    A few years back a friend was leaving my flat. She passed by the door of my neighbour, which was ajar, and saw said neighbour ‘sleeping’ on the floor of the lounge. Said bloke was a bit of a piss pot so it wasn’t unusual to find him slumped in non-traditional sleeping zones, which included outside on the footpath.

    By the time I got back that evening his corpse had been removed and the following day his brother (a little wizened tinker type) moved in for a few days to see to the affairs of the deceased. This little fellow had a habit of wandering about in a tweed jacket and nothing else. On two occasions I saw him entertaining himself by the window in broad daylight without a care in the world.

    Odd family.

  207. Swineshead Says:

    SHE CUD HAV SAYVD HIMS

  208. Nick T Says:

    Phew, back to fat slappers….

  209. Nick T Says:

    I loved that tweed jacket…

  210. piqued Says:

    I shouted that to her as the police bundled her into a car

    To be honest you wouldn’t want to touch him, he had these golf ball sized lumps all over his head. He made Lemmy look like Joanna Lumley

  211. Mel Says:

    Yes, they went on honeymoon, and when she got back she kept reporting being bothered by flies, it was about three weeks before the stain appeared on the ceiling. Height of summer. They were on honeymoon for 3 weeks. The police thought that the poor man had died sometime in the first week. All the neighbours kept telling each other that the sewers were blocked. They had Thames water out to investigate, but no-one thought to knock on poor Mr Drippy’s door.

    I have nothing to report on the occurence of odd little masturbators moving in while his estate was being sorted though.

  212. Napoleon Says:

    Apparently the bloke wot lived in my flat afore me died in here. I don’t know if he’d started liquifying before they found him, but considering the shoddy state of my carpets, I wouldn’t be entirely surprised.

  213. piqued Says:

    Mel, who said anything about masturbation? He was playing Patience as well

  214. Mel Says:

    As well as what Piqued?

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