QI: Series M, Episode 8 – Merriment


It is panto season on QI this week as it is their Christmas special (recorded in June). For some reason this week the XL version was put out before the regular one, but personally I don’t see the point in the regular one anyway as the XL version is what people really want. We want to see the whole thing, not edited highlights.

This time joining Stephen Fry and Alan Davies where Bill Bailey (with keyboard), Jenny Eclair (with rage) and Johnny Vegas (with a growing sense of worry over his fragile mental state), as they talked about the big problem with Victorian theatres, the most annoying thing you can do during silent movies, listen to some music made for cats, and try to make their own songs for the genuine industrial musical The Bathrooms Are Coming.

In this episode the most interesting things seems to be about the show itself and the two regulars. We come across a Christmas card depicting a 1916 pantomime which features an actor who looks exactly like Alan; there was technical problems when a light bulb exploded during the recording; we learn that every single episode of QI has a hidden message in it (which without giving too much away they may have to change next year); and Stephen performs a magic trick, which in turns result in Stephen himself getting something very magical indeed.

All the guests panellists played their part, but Johnny Vegas especially was on top, if disturbing form, worrying about if cats only meow to people, and getting into an argument with Jenny over ice cream. Bill was also good performing some musical turns and writing a new QI jingle.

One of the best episodes of QI I can remember for a while.

The standard version of this episode goes out on Christmas Day at 21.50 on BBC Two. The next episode goes out on 29th December at 22.00.