PIERS MORGAN’S LIFE STORIES – RUSSEL BRAND: Saturday 16th April, ITV1, 9.50pm
When we heard that Piers Morgan would be interviewing Russell Brand on his Life Stories chat-show we at OTB felt that this union would surely result in more controversial statements than an afternoon with The Phelps family. This is after all a meeting between the former Mirror editor who once controversially published faked photos of British troops abusing Iraqi prisoners and an eccentric comedian who was vilified by the Daily Mail for leaving Fawlty Towers star Andrew Sachs a lewd voicemail message. But if Morgan was expecting the wild man Brand of old in all his big-haired glory, he was in for quite a disappointment.
The newly married comedian appears a far less frenzied figure than the bed-hopping Ponderland star of old. Where once the Brand sported a backcombed barnet, skinny jeans and dark guy-linered eyes as his trademarks, tonight he was wearing a plain brown suit and showing almost no body hair. Calm in nature, were are no erratic hand gestures or comic facial expressions usually witnessed in his stand-up performances.
He is certainly an open bookie-wook. Piers questioned him on his addiction to drugs, Sachsgate and even on how he screwed up his first shot at stardom by dressing up as Osama Bin Laden whilst working for MTV. Brand talks candidly about each of these topics, allowing snippets of his cheeky humour along the way whilst Piers looks like a kid in a candy shop, laughing at the comic actors ridiculous metaphors and quirky sense of humour. When asked how he deals with drugs being so readily available to celebrities Brand answers, “I just take each day one step at a time. Looking at anything for the rest of your life is daunting. I’ve got you today and that’s more than enough!”
But for the best part of the interview, Morgan concentrates on Russell’s sex addiction and how this has affected his marriage to pop strumpet Katy Perry. Brand has been titled ‘Shagger Of The Year’ three times by times by The Sun, and a series of video clips from pals of the handsome star such as Noel Gallagher and David Baddiel explain that Brand used to enjoy a conveyor belt of women, having sex with around five ‘faceless bodies’ a day.
It is quite frankly baffling that any celebrity agrees to appear on Piers Morgan’s Life Stories, given that the former editor of The News of The World and The Mirror seems to have a knack for exposing the rawest of emotions from his guests. Simon Cowell had to take a few moments of silence when discussing the death of his father when he appeared on the show, whilst Cheryl Cole basically cried and dabbed her eyes during most of her interview. So given that his talent as an interviewer is in exposing the deepest feelings of some of the most controversial and highly discussed celebrities, his latest guest Russell Brand must have left Morgan salivating at the prospect of what secrets the wild comedian might reveal. After all, in recent weeks Morgan has interviewed Susan Boyle and Andrew Lloyd Webber, so he was probably hoping that good old Russell would spice up proceedings. But the fact that the comedian has never been shy about discussing these subjects certainly took some of the edge off what could have been some interesting bombshells. Fans will enjoy this, but it offered little in the way of new information..