Category Archives: ‘Celebrity Juice’

This Week in TV – 24th – 30th August

Here I provide a comprehensive list of the best of the coming week’s TV – from Hancock to Lemon and Carr. Oh, and a few serious bits thrown in. Just to even it out.

Saturday 24th August

The Xtra Factor Rewind

ITV2, 9:00pm

There’s just one week to go until Louis, Gary and Nicole return for another series of The X Factor –  alongside Sharon Osbourne, who has been absent for six (long) years.

In this one-off episode, Xtra Factor host Caroline Flack takes us on a trip down memory lane to revisit last year’s ‘Schermazeballs’ series. So, expect a bit of miserable-faced champion, James Arthur; some former shelf-stacker, Jahmene Douglas; a generous helping of semi-finalists Union J; and a lot of Rylan Clark. Oh, and of course Scouse crooner, Christopher Maloney – whose royalties for appearing on Rewind will go straight to his nan. Naturally.

My preview of the tenth series of The X Factor, which begins a week today, will be online from midnight on Tuesday.

Also today: It’s a Pointless Celebrities radio special at 5:35pm (BBC1) as a group of famous faces – or rather famous voices – compete for the ‘coveted Pointless trophy’; Jack Dee and Alex Jones are on That Puppet Game Show (BBC1, 6:25pm); the sixth in the Harry Potter franchise, The Half-Blood Prince is on ITV at 7:00pm; Alex Jones pops up again, alongside Micky, Frank and Gabby, on I Love My Country (BBC1, 7:05pm); film The A-Team is on Channel 4 (9:20pm), as is Tim Minchin and the Heritage Orchestra Live at the Royal Albert Hall (11:35pm).

Sunday 25th August

What Remains

BBC1, 9:00pm

Starring David Threlfall (pictured), Russell Tovey and Amber Rose Revah, What Remains is a suspense-filled ‘whodunnit’ from Hotel Babylon and Inside Men writer, Tony Basgallop.

Michael and Vidya (Tovey and Revah) are a couple about to embark on'What Remains' - BBC1, 9:00pm an exciting new life together. However, when they move into their flat at 8 Coulthard Street, they find that they have a leak – which leads to the discovery of the remains of Melissa Young. Melissa has been missing for two years – but never registered so, and no one seems to have noticed her disappearance.

This is where DI Len Harper (Threlfall) comes in. He is put in charge of the case, which is seemingly easy to get to the bottom of. Harper has his own problems, though, and the mystery of Melissa’s disappearance and death acts as the perfect distraction for him. He puts his all into the investigation, refusing to take his retirement (which he was due to start a week after he began working on the case) until he uncovers the truth. During his search, he discovers the secrets that each of Michael and Vidya’s new neighbours are holding, and how they all, in some way, have a part to play in Melissa’s death.

Also today: 2011 film, Chalet Girl premieres (Channel 4, 6:15pm); Iolo Williams presents Iolo’s Great Welsh Parks (BBC2, 6:30pm); Liz McClarnon, Keith Duffy and Dan Whiston compete in the last in the series of Tipping Point: Lucky Stars (ITV, 7:00pm); Vera is back (ITV, 8:00pm); Gok Wan takes on the Banker in Celebrity Deal or No Deal (Channel 4, 8:00pm); a night dedicated to Morecambe and Wise begins on digital channel Drama at 8:00pm with Bring Me Morecambe & Wise, followed by biopic Eric & Ernie (9:00pm); Jason Statham stars in The Mechanic (Channel 4, 9:00pm); superb spoof crime series, A Touch of Cloth returns (Sky1 HD, 9:00pm); Sandi Toksvig, Jason Manford and Jeremy Clarkson are on the episode of QI which for some reason is being shown over seven months after the J series ended, ‘Just the Job’ (BBC2, 10:00pm); and The Sixth Sense is on Channel 4 at 10:50pm.

Bank Holiday Monday (26th August)

Ultimate Swarms

BBC1, 9:00pm

In this one-off programme, zoologist George McGavin sets off in search of the world’s most impressive swarms.

By meeting bats, bees and everything in between, George aims to discover why swarms are the answer to surviving against the odds, and how we can perhaps adopt the thinking of these animals in order to live our lives easier and better.

Also today: Oscar-winning epic Ben Hur (Channel 4, 11:05am); Doctor Who at the Proms (BBC1, 4:00pm); 2008 film The Incredible Hulk (ITV, 4:20pm); one-off documentary World’s Most Pampered Pets (Channel 5, 6:00pm); Only Connect comes to BBC2 for a week, starting with a ‘Champion of Champions’ special (7:30pm); Hugh Hunt presents Attack of the Zeppelins (Channel 4, 8:00pm); World’s Scariest Animal Attacks is on Channel 5 (8:00pm); Matt Damon stars in The Bourne Identity (ITV, 9:00pm); sci-fi film Independence Day is on Sky1 (10:00pm); and BBC2 is showing Last Chance Harvey (10:30pm).

Tuesday 27th August

My Hero

BBC1, 10:35pm

We’ve already seen Miranda Hart on Eric Morecambe and Hugh Dennis on Ronnie Barker but now it’s time for Death in Paradise star Ben Miller to profile his comedy hero: Tony Hancock.

I’m sure a lot of people won’t be familiar with Tony Hancock’s work. They may have heard his name bandied around a little, but they will likely not appreciate the huge impact he had on British comedy. Tony had huge success from 1954 with his radio series, Hancock’s Half Hour, which also introduced to the public such stars as Hattie Jacques, Sid James and the irrepressible Kenneth Williams. In 1956, Hancock’s Half Hour arrived on television, and became one of the first sitcoms as we know them.

However, Tony also had a tumultuous personal life. He had quite a few mistresses during his 44 year-long life, one of which was his best friend and regular co-star John Le Mesurier’s wife Joan. He also battled depression and alcoholism, all of which led to his suicide by overdose in 1968.

Still, just like so many comics, he kept his demons at bay while he was entertaining the nation, which he did so often – and it is his legacy as a great comedian and angry blood donor (well done if you got that reference) which makes him the perfect hero of Ben Miller’s.

Also today: Protect your ears from the screams – it’s One Direction This Is Us Special (Sky1 HD, 6:00pm); and (no ear-covering required for this one) Michael Scott presents Ancient Greece: The Greatest Show on Earth (BBC4, 9:00pm).

Wednesday 28th August

Martin Luther King and the March on Washington

BBC2, 9:00pm

Narrated by Denzel Washington, this one-off documentary marks the 50th anniversary of Martin  Luther King’s historic March on Washington, which was a hugely important moment in the American Civil Rights'Martin Luther King and the March on Washington'- BBC2, 9:00pm Movement.

Through archive footage and interviews with those who were there and even helped organise it, this programme tells the story of the march: how it faced opposition from the JFK administration and the FBI and how it ultimately helped bring about racial equality in the States.

The BBC’s commemoration of this momentous event, and celebration of Luther King in general, continues after March on Washington, as BBC4 are showing MLK: The Assassination Tapes at 10:00pm.

Also today: Footloose (E4, 8:00pm); Nick Hewer is on Who Do You Think You Are? (BBC1, 9:00pm); after less than a week in the house, one famous face must leave as it’s eviction night on Celebrity Big Brother (Channel 5, 9:00pm); see the best of the Fringe with Comedy Festival Live (BBC3, 9:00pm); Jem Stansfield presents Crash Test Dummy: A Smashing History (BBC4, 9:00pm), which does exactly what is says on the tin; and Prisoner: Cell Block H remake Wentworth Prison comes to Channel 5 (10:00pm).

Thursday 29th August

Celebrity Juice

ITV2, 10:00pm

Is the novelty of Keith Lemon wearing off? That’s something I’ve found myself thinking quite often recently. I mean, Sing If You Can and Keith Lemon’s LemonAid weren’t exactly hits for ITV, were they? Keith Lemon: The Film was widely slated, too (I even found myself criticising it with someone who was interviewing me for a job the other week!) and I got very bored of his ‘autobiography’, Being Keith: How I Got ‘Ere If You Don’t Know How I Got ‘Ere after about the tenth page. Is the sight of Northern Businessman of the Year 1993 getting his ‘tallywacker’ out on primetime ITV2 getting old? I would have to say yes.

Still, when he keeps it in his trousers there are still a lot of laughs to be had with Keith, and with his revival of Through the Keyhole to hit our screens soon, it looks like he’s sticking around for a while. Plus, of course, Celebrity Juice is back, which means more comments about Holly Willoughby’s bangers and Fearne Cotton’s nostrils – which she has kindly brought back with her from maternity leave.

So, prepare for morerer laughs, morerer crudeness and morerer Keith – because it seems that you don’t have any choice.

Also today: Monster Moves is back (Channel 5, 7:00pm); documentary series The Railway: First Great Western begins (Channel 5, 8:00pm); Derren Brown: Svengali is repeated (Channel 4, 10:00pm); and one-off documentary The Man Who Ate Himself to Death (Channel 5, 10:00pm), which follows Ricky Naputi in his final few months.

Friday 30th August

Alan Carr: Chatty Man

Channel 4, 10:00pm

It’s not just Leigh Francis who is going to be sticking around for a while – Alan Carr will be too, as Chatty Man begins its eleventh series, and there’s plenty more to come, as it has also been  commissioned well into next year.

With his effortless style and highly-entertaining, silly demeanour, it really is no surprise that Alan'Alan Carr: Chatty Man' - Channel 4, 10:00pm Carr is Channel 4’s golden boy, is it? Earlier this year, he signed a golden handcuffs deal with the channel, which will see him earn £4million and stay with them until at least 2015. I hope they give him more than just Chatty Man and repeats of his stand-up shows, though. I love seeing him chatting to stars on his sofa but how about something a bit…different for him? I mean, he has started a sitcom pilot but, if his chat with Miranda Hart on the Chatty Man Mash-Up is anything to go by, he found that too difficult and has given up. So what about something like The Friday Night Project or Celebrity Ding Dong? He was brilliant on those and I’m sure a similar show to either would prove very popular. For the time being, though, I’m happy to just enjoy him on Chatty Man.

So, who are his first guests of the series? Well, Rizzle Kicks will be performing their annoyingly catchy song, ‘Lost Generation’, and Lee Evans and Keeley Hawes will be dropping by to talk about their West End comedy, Barking in Essex – and there will likely be chat about Lee’s upcoming tour, Monsters, too.

Also today: Construction Squad: Operation Homefront (Channel 5, 8:00pm) begins by looking at the transformation of an old hospital in Newcastle; Mamma Mia! is on ITV2 – again (8:00pm); Big Fat Gyspy Weddings is back (Channel 4, 9:00pm); another housemate gets the boot in Celebrity Big Brother (Channel 5, 9:00pm); horror film Orphan (More4, 9:00pm); Sara Cox and One Direction members Louis Tomlinson, Harry Styles and Niall Horan (who also gets so very slightly naked) are on A League of Their Own (Sky1 HD, 9:00pm); documentary Youssou N’Dour: Voice of Africa, profiling the Senegalese musician, is on BBC4 (9:20pm); there are a few laughs with Seann Walsh in his Late Night Comedy Spectacular (BBC3, 10:00pm); and films The Nutty Professor (ITV2) and The Boat That Rocked (ITV) are on at 10:10pm and 10:45pm, respectively.

Are you particularly looking forward to any of these shows or is there something else from the world of TV which you want to have your say about? Feel free to comment below or tweet me –@UKTVReviewer.

Image credits: What Remains – Thanks to BBC and Laurie Sparham, ©BBC; Martin Luther King and the March on Washington – Thanks to BBC, ©NARA/Smoking Dog Films; Alan Carr: Chatty Man – Thanks to Channel 4 and Open Mike Productions.

TV Highlights (6th – 12th April)

Here I provide a comprehensive list of the best of the coming week’s TV.

Saturday 6th April

Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway

ITV, 7:00pm

It has been a fantastic series for Saturday Night Takeaway, which returned in February after a four year hiatus. This tenth season has seen Ant & Dec get their first number one single (‘Let’s Get Ready to Rhumble’ – the proceeds of which went to ChildLine) and consistently attract over six million viewers every week – meaning that they trounced BBC1’s The Voice last Saturday by one million.

Some features have worked better than others – the Undercover sketches involving One Direction and Piers Morgan were disappointingly poor while the opening audience participation and ‘End of the Show Shows’ have been excellent – but overall it has been a triumphant and welcome return for the only show on telly that says, ‘Don’t just watch the adverts: win them!’. Sadly, this week is the final instalment of this series, but ITV have recommissioned the show for 2014. Well it was either this or Red or Black – it was no contest, was it?

This week, Jonathan Ross steps into the voiceover booth; Little Ant and Dec grill Gerard Butler about his new film, Olympus Has Fallen; the ‘Ant v Dec’ victor is crowned; and the Jersey Boys cast perform at the end of the show – probably with help from the Geordie duo themselves.

Also today: coverage of The Grand National is on Channel 4 (1:00pm); Davina McCall puts players up against a 15ft hourglass in her new game show, Five Minutes to a Fortune (Channel 4, 5:10pm); The Many Faces of Sid James profiles the Carry On star’s life (BBC2, 7:30pm); and Ben Kingsley, Carl Froch, Audrey Tautou and Alt-J pull up a pew on The Jonathan Ross Show (ITV, 9:20pm).

Sunday 7th April

Catchphrase

ITV, 6:45pm

If you have tuned in to ITV at any point this week, you can’t fail to have seen the trailers for the revived game show, Catchphrase.

Britain’s Got More Talent’s Stephen Mulhern steps into the shoes of former hosts Mark Curry, Nick Weir (‘Broken Leg Man’, remember?) and, of course, Roy Walker, to test contestants’ recognition of popular phrases and sayings. Of course, however, it often isn’t as easy as it seems.

The show, you may be pleased to hear, has been updated somewhat for 2013. Mr Chips looks like he’s ‘had some work done’, the graphics have been modernised and the money has improved! Yes, no longer shall players make it all the way through to the Super Catchphrase and win a couple of grand and a trip to Thailand. Instead, they could win a massive £50,000 – and a trip to Thailand…or any other destination.

I’m very much looking forward to the all-new Catchphrase beginning – not only because it is a great format which is always guaranteed to produce a few laughs (how can we forget the infamous ‘Snake Charmer’ episode?) but also it should put an end to those incessant bloody trailers.

Also today: Nick Hewer hauls an industrial saw to Sierra Leone for a young carpenter – honestly – in Nick Hewer: Countdown to Freetown (Channel 4, 7:00pm); new hidden camera show Off Their Rockers begins (ITV, 7:30pm); BBC1’s brilliant period drama The Village continues (9:00pm); and Oscar-winning film The King’s Speech premieres on Channel 4 at 9:00pm.

Monday 8th April

The Prisoners

BBC1, 9:00pm

Filmed over a year, this new series follows criminals from across the country – from those who are entering jail, to those who are currently serving time, and repeat offenders.

The first episode in the three-part series focuses on Holloway Prison. One of the repBBC & Genie Pictureseat offenders featured is eighteen-year-old Jayde (pictured, right). Jayde has previously spent time in jail six times and returns to Holloway just two weeks after her release.

The Prisoners seems to be in a similar vein to recent ITV documentaries such as Holloway and Her Majesty’s Prison – Aylesbury, both of which were quite successful, fascinating and shocking audiences in equal measure. I have no doubt that this series will have a similar effect.

The Prisoners has been postponed, owing to the BBC’s broadcast of Margaret Thatcher: Prime Minister.

Also today: Lucy Worsley investigates how the ill health of monarchs has helped to shape British history in Fit to Rule: How Royal Illness Changed History (BBC2, 9:00pm); ITV’s gripping Broadchurch continues at 9:00pm; Chris Terrill speaks to people who are failing to cope with life after the armed forces in Battle Scarred: Soldiers Behind Bars (Channel 5, 10:00pm); and Made in Chelsea starts its fifth series (E4, 10:00pm).

Tuesday 8th April BBC & ACS

Later Live…With Jools Holland

BBC2, 10:00pm

Jools Holland (right) returns with another series of his musical showcases. This episode includes performances from Cat Power, the Strypes, Suede and Laura Mvula.

Also today: Kay Mellor’s excellent The Syndicate continues (BBC1, 9:00pm); Helen Czerski hosts Pop! The Science of Bubbles (BBC4, 9:00pm); and the fifth episode of The Matt Lucas Awards, postponed from last Tuesday, is on BBC1 at 10:35pm.

Wednesday 10th April

Victoria Wood’s Nice Cup of Tea

BBC1, 9:00pm

Viewers may be more accustomed to seeing Victoria Wood serving up tea in the canteen of HWD Components as one of the dinnerladies but in this two-part series, the multi-talented comedienne delves into exactly why us Brits are such obsessive drinkers of the stuff.

Over the course of two one-hour episodes, Victoria (below) travels the globe and speaks to stars such as Matt Smith and Morrissey in order to discover what our fascination is with tea, as well as its importance in history – how was it discovered and how exactly did it generate wars, but also help us win them?

Concludes tomorrow.BBC & Keo Films

Also today: Frank Gardner’s Return to Saudi Arabia (BBC2, 9:00pm) follows the BBC security correspondent as he returns to the country where he was shot almost nine years ago; 24 Hours in A&E is back on Channel 4 (9:00pm); Matt Morgan’s sublime The Mimic concludes (Channel 4, 10:00pm); and so does Anna & Katy (Channel 4, 10:35pm) which, considering the huge talents of its stars, has consisted of mainly below-average sketches this series.

Thursday 11th April

Celebrity Juice

ITV2, 10:00pm

The ninth series of the anarchic panel show continues as host Keith Lemon welcomes Catchphrase’s Stephen Mulhern, Girls Aloud’s Sarah Harding and TOWIE stars Joey Essex and Sam Faiers to join in the fun.

This series has been consistently great but there is one thing: isn’t it time to give Jedward the push?

Also today: Channel 5’s Trauma Doctors (9:00pm), as the title suggests, follows doctors at one of the UK’s leading trauma centres; and new series The Sex Clinic explores the lives of some of the patients at London and Birmingham’s sexual-health clinics (Channel 4, 10:00pm).

Friday 12th April

The Security Men

ITV, 9:00pm

Four security guards’ idleness is exposed in this one-off comedy, written by Caroline Aherne and Jeff Pope.

After the four guards decide to switch off the alarms in the shopping centre where they work in order to watch the darts, in full widescreen, HD, surround sound glory, they are horrified to discover that a theft has taken place at a jewellers within the centre. The men then create an elaborate ploy to get themselves off the hook.

As well as having been written by Aherne and Pope (who collaborated on 2009’s beautiful The Fattest Man in Britain), The Security Men features an all-star cast: Brendan O’Carroll leaves Agnes Brown’s dress behind to play Jimmy, Early Doors’ Peter Wight is Kenneth, Mount Pleasant and Not Going Out regular Bobby Ball portrays Duckers, and Life on Mars star Dean Andrews plays Ray. Take Me Out’s Paddy McGuinness also pops up as PC Clarke, who investigates the aforementioned burglary.

I’m really looking forward to The Security Men. I’m fans of all of its stars and think the plot is packed with comic potential. However, at only sixty minutes in length, I am slightly worried that that potential will not be fully realised. Fingers crossed, though, it will be better than Caroline Aherne’s most recent TV venture: the abysmal 2012 Royle Family Christmas special.

You can read my review of The Security Men here.

Also today: Brian Blessed is in the host’s chair for perhaps the most eagerly anticipated Have I Got News For You since Angus Deayton’s sacking (BBC1, 9:00pm); physicist Isaac Newton is profiled in The Last Magician (BBC2, 9:00pm); although there are twice as many of them than necessary, comedians Jon Richardson, Rhod Gilbert, Lee Mack and Rob Beckett all compete in another 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown (Channel 4, 9:00pm); Not Going Out, which has been recommissioned for a seventh series and two Christmas specials, continues (BBC1, 9:30pm); Alan Carr somehow bags an exclusive chat with troubled former footballer Paul Gascoigne in Chatty Man (Channel 4, 10:00pm); and Michael Buble, Amanda Holden and Jack Dee are on The Graham Norton Show (BBC1, 10:35pm).

Are you particularly looking forward to any of these shows or is there something else from the world of TV which you want to have your say about? Feel free to comment below or tweet me about this or any other TV show – @UKTVReviewer.

TV Round-Up: 15 – 21st September 2012

Comedy World Cup – Episode 1.1

The premise for this show really is brilliant: a team of comedians – old and young – answer questions on the world of comedy. That’s everything from stand-up, to the sitcom, to the panel show to really get apparent comedy know-it-alls like myself and the panellists wracking our brains.

Fans of the genre will be all over it – as will David Tennant fans. The trouble is, though, that comedy fans may be left somewhat crestfallen as, considering it’s a show all about the subject, it’s not very funny.

I’m a huge fan of host David Tennant, as well as many of the participants this week: Shappi Khorsandi, Jo Brand, Dave Spikey, Jason Manford and Nicholas Parsons. Paul Chowdhry not so much. However, I don’t think they particularly excelled on Comedy World Cup which was a shame, especially when it came to Dave Spikey – someone who I believe to be one of the most underrated comics on the circuit, sadly living in former friend Peter Kay’s shadow. I actually went to see Dave live in March and found him to be just as good – if not better – than many comics I have seen, whether it be live or onscreen.

It was a watchable show, but not a stand-out one. I suppose some tricky questions blended with vintage – yet hit/miss – clips managed to see it through. Hopefully it won’t rely on this throughout the series, though.

Big Fat Quiz of the 80s

Call me sad, but one of the highlights of the festive season for me is watching the annual Big Fat Quiz of the Year. I always enjoy it! Sometimes I even watch the Big Fat Quizzes from as far back as 2005 and it still tickles me.

The key to the Big Fat Quizzes‘ success is a brilliant panel, usually involving Jonathan Ross, Russell Brand or Noel Fielding and other fantastic comedians. However, although entertaining, I have to say that I’ve seen better panels than the one produced on Big Fat Quiz of the 80s.

The contributors on this episode were comedians Jason Manford, Jonathan Ross, Adam Buxton (…) and Micky Flanagan, alongside actor Stephen Mangan (of Green Wing and Episodes fame) and Loose Woman, Carol Vorderman. I guess they were chosen specifically for their 80s status: Jonathan and Adam both fall into the ‘nerd’ category so are therefore probably fans of 80s retro, Micky was in his twenties in the decade, Carol started in her iconic Countdown role and Jason and Stephen were, I guess, either teenagers or young kids so have some sort of affinity with that time. Nevertheless, as I said, it wasn’t the strongest panel ever.

Fortunately Micky Flanagan didn’t disappoint. It’s refreshing to see a comedian who always laughs if he finds other comics’ jokes funny, unlike some comedians who suppress it, prioritising professional rivalry of simply being genuine. Plus, his Filofax gag was the highlight of the show! I couldn’t possible repeat it here, though…

Big Fat Quiz of the 80s was still funny but not as much as I would have thought. Maybe I had my expectations set too high, due to the standard of previous years’ episodes. Perhaps I just missed the presence of a Brand, Ayoade, Fielding or Walliams to provide absolutely absurd answers throughout.

Tomorrow there’s the 90s quiz and, I’m going to be honest, I’m not holding out much hope for it. If Jack Whitehall wasn’t there, I think I’d be dreading it. I may be pleasantly surprised, though. I hope so.

The Rob Brydon Show – Episode 3.6

What has been a fairly average – yet quite enjoyable – series of The Rob Brydon Show drew to a close this week.

Once again, the audience interaction was great as in this episode, Rob spoke to a man who was born in a toilet. Actually in a toilet. As if the story wasn’t brilliant enough in itself, the host added, “And your mother looked down and said, ‘It’s a wee boy!'” Inspired.

The first, and probably biggest, guest of tonight’s show was Ray Winstone who provided my favourite moment of the entire series when Rob attempted to get him to showcase his ‘softer side’ by getting him to read an excerpt from The Three Little Pigs.

Despite his instruction being to not act tough, nor intimidating, Ray still managed to incorporate this line to a crossed-legged, thumb-sucking Rob:

“Take care that that naughty, naughty, naughty, naughty wolf does not catch you…’cos ‘e’s a f*cker!”

I had to pause the show because I was laughing so much!

It’s a safe bet that The Rob Brydon Show will return for both a Christmas special later in the year and a fourth series next. That’s not a complaint by any means but the show isn’t very experimental, is it? It’s a very ‘safe’ comedy so could run and run without anyone questioning it or calling for changes. So, until the inevitable special, farewell, Rob!

Citizen Khan – Episode 1.4

Now that the whole furore about its alleged political incorrectness seems to have died down, Citizen Khan seems to be going quite unnoticed, just moving along at a consistent pace. Unfortunately, that consistency means that it’s still as unfunny as when it started.

In fact, I so often find myself spending the whole episode cringing on the cast and crew’s behalves. I don’t think it’s offensive or particularly stereotypical – it’s just predictable and of poor quality!

If it wasn’t for the fact that it may be challenging and altering perceptions of the Muslim and Pakistani communities, I doubt it would even have been commissioned!

Celebrity Juice – Episode 8.4

I don’t know about you, but I tend to find that when a new series of Juice starts, it seems that this run is going to be the best ever. Full of fresh ideas and jokes, it looks to be the funniest of them all.

However, a few weeks in, the novelty of having Keith and the gang back wanes a little and, while there are still moments of genuine hilarity, it just isn’t as good as it was a few episodes back. Well, that’s the way I’m starting to feel.

Don’t get me wrong: I still think it’s a brilliantly funny program and stands head-and-shoulders above its contemporaries, but the magic of the first couple of episodes isn’t quite there any more.

Nevertheless, I loved this episode. With chart-topper Example, Capital breakfast show’s Lisa Snowdon, comedian Chris Ramsey and Olympic hero Mo Farrah (or as Keith preferred to call him, MoFo!), while it wasn’t the funniest of the series, it was the most shocking!

The shock came from the Bonk Game – a spoof of the Bong Game, as played on the Capital breakfast show. Whereas in the original Bong Game, callers have to hold their nerve while sums of money gradually increase, and if they call for it to stop before the ‘Bong’ goes, they win that money, Keith’s Bonk Game was nothing like this. Instead, Lisa had to predict how far Keith would go with her on a first date. It started quite civilised, with “LOOKING INTO EACH OTHER’S EYES”, then “CUDDLE”, “PUT MY HAND ON YOUR KNEE”, then it got a bit more risqué with, “TOUCHING BOOB OVER SHIRT”…and then it descended into something else altogether! I stared at the TV open-mouthed and just felt so sorry for Fearne and Holly! Even given the nature of Celebrity Juice, the Bonk Game was shocking – hilarious, but shocking.

Then, there was the first round – LemonHead – in which Keith produced a magazine entitled Le Closerer. On seeing it, everyone leaped to the Duchess of Cambridge’s defence and turned into a pantomime audience, booing and hissing at the mock-up. However, their boos turned to cheers and their hissing to applause when Keith proudly placed the magazine in a shredder! Keith took it even further, though, when he emptied the shreds, spat on them (prompting those present to cheer even more), then picked a handful up and pretended to angrily wipe his backside on them – by which time any cheering had subsided and laughs prevailed.

I’ve already made my views known about the Kate scandal elsewhere, but I will say that to see Keith do this was unexpected. It would have been so easy for him to just mock the Duchess and ridicule her and the story as a whole. The fact that he didn’t is actually quite respectable and solidifies the outrage and disgust we as a nation feel towards the French magazine.

Trollied – Episode 2.5

Trollied – the jewel in Sky’s comedy crown – is fast becoming the highlight of my week and it’s down to two things: brilliant one-liners and Stephanie Beacham.

In fact, a lot of the one-liners I am so fond of do come from Stephanie Beacham’s character: Valco’s foul-mouthed manager, Lorraine. It’s simply inspired that every other word with her is “bastard” – and it’s not becoming tiresome! Every time she does unnecessarily drop it into a sentence, it’s still hilarious! She’s the best thing about Trollied – and that’s some achievement.

The big storyline this week was happy-go-lucky – and slightly dippy – shelf-stacker Leighton turning off all of the freezers in store in order to prevent global warming, thus flooding the frozen food section. This led to Lorraine – who has hated him for a while now anyway, ever since he sold copious bottles of cider to a group of schoolboy…who were dressed in school uniform (his defence was that he “was told they were thirty”) – ordering Julie to fire him immediately.

Valco is Leighton’s life! He was devastated to have been fired for just trying to do good for the environment, and I was devastated to see him go. I really hope he comes back – if he doesn’t, I’ll try to get him a job with me at Argos!

The subplot of Julie trying to emulate Lorraine – both in authority, speech and body language – is excellent, too. Julie and Lorraine are polar-opposites, like chalk and cheese or Alex Reid and Chantelle Houghton. And we all know how it turned out for the latter pair, don’t we? (While we’re on the subject: have you seen Alex’s grovelling video? Oh my God!) Lorraine is a tough, no-nonsense woman, whereas Julie is a soft, flighty girl – it’s just a treat to watch. And long may it continue to be!

Alan Carr: Chatty Man – Episode 9.2

Chatty Man seems to be going from strength-to-strength, appearing to achieve more of an intimate party feel every series. It really is a great ‘Friday night in’ show!

Alan’s monologue at the top of the show remains a favourite with me and this week he had me howling with laughter as he announced:

“An Italian magazine have [sic] printed the pictures of Kate and Wills sunbathing over twenty six pages. If you flick through them really quickly you can see Kate getting browner…and William getting balder!”

After his routine and the low-down on the guests still to come, the comedian welcomed his first guests: the cast of Channel 4 comedy-drama Fresh Meat, including Jack Whitehall (Bad Education) and Joe Thomas (The Inbetweeners).

Seriously, can someone tell me why Joe always has a face like a slapped arse? Even when he and his fellow Inbetweeners presented an award at the BAFTAs last year, he looked so miserable!

Despite Thomas’s grumpiness, though, I did enjoy the interview – particularly a palpably tipsy Jack Whitehall – and listening to the cast share their own university experiences (as Fresh Meat is set in a university) was great. The camaraderie between all of them (well, perhaps except one…) was lovely to see, as they gently mocked each other’s anecdotes.

I also loved seeing Doctor Who star Matt Smith on the show. He’s been on the Chatty Man sofa before and made a welcome reappearance. You could tell he and Alan get on really well, especially when the host shared the “Who’s ‘Matt Smith’?!” story! Someone has uploaded it to YouTube and, although it’s terrible quality, you can see it here – about forty five seconds in.

I was in hysterics when Alan enquired as to where the BBC get the money from to fund Doctor Who. What must go through his mind either when writing questions for Matt, or as an ad-lib during recording, to prompt him to say:

“I thought they were skint! Who’s the BBC been sucking off?”

This week’s was a really enjoyable Chatty Man – as is the norm. However, the singer Example did go down in my estimations: I thought he was unnecessarily rude and bossy towards Alan! He certainly didn’t set a good Example!*

Next week’s guests are Grand Designs‘ Kevin McCloud, The Voice UK‘s Jessie J, songstress Alicia Keys and boyband One Direction! No disrespect to him, but I don’t think anyone’s going to be turning up just to see Kevin McCloud…

*Couldn’t resist

QI – Episode 10.2

Now into its ‘J’ series, the focus of this week’s QI was ‘Jam, Jelly and Juice’.

The first question asked by quizmaster Stephen was, “What begins with ‘J’ and appears to be alive?” An array of answers followed, including:

  • “Me” (Jo Brand)
  • “James Blunt” (Liza Tarbuck)
  • “Jeremy Clarkson” (Sue Perkins)
  • “Jedward” (Sue Perkins)

Both of Sue’s answers received the dreaded klaxon, flashing lights, etc. The answer was strangely jelly, because brainwaves can actually be detected from it. Now that’s more than Quite Interesting!

Speaking of Quite Interesting, we discovered something new about Stephen Fry this week, when he sat in his host’s chair and announced without a hint of irony, “I like titties.” It was most unexpected, as I’m sure you can imagine! What a way to reveal it: on the telly!

Seriously, never have I watched an episode of QI in which there has been more innuendo. ‘Jam, Jelly and Juice’ was absolutely packed with it, much to host Stephen’s apparent disapproval. He got quite stiff about it…

The show ended with – just like last week – a disappointing absence of General Ignorance: one of my highlights of previous series. I don’t know whether it’s because of running time but it was cruelly cut, and wasn’t even present in last week’s QI XL!

General Ignorance’s vanishing act wasn’t the biggest shock this week, though, as Alan Davies somehow managed to summon up a victory with an amazing +11 points! He might not be popular with Liverpool FC fans, but he is with those at QI!

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Also, keep up-to-date with the latest TV news, reviews and interviews at www.thecustardtv.com, where some of my articles will also appear.

‘Celebrity Juice’ – Episode 8.2

Celebrity Juice is one of those shows which is quite difficult to review. Just like The Rob Brydon Show and Mount Pleasant, it’s best just to sit back and enjoy it, not be analytical and pick out everything in it – good or bad.

‘NON-STOP HILARITY’

I thought last week’s episode was great, but this was even better! TOWIE‘s Arg, The Inbetweeners‘ Charlotte Hinchcliff (actress Emily Atack), singer Newton Faulkner and comedian Jason Manford joined in the fun this week and there were many, many highlights for me. Almost from start-to-finish it was non-stop hilarity, so I’ve simply picked out three of my best bits from this week’s episode:

Keith Calling Fearne a “Fat Bastard”

When I write it, it doesn’t seem funny. However, when you watch Keith Lemon telling the pregnant Fearne Cotton, “Tell us who’s on your team, you fat bastard”, it’s very, very funny. Believe me. It is.

“Serious Learning Difficulties”

Relax – I’m not going to repeat a Frankie Boyle set! Keith, who – clearly much to the frustration of stars like Amy Childs and Joey Essex – claims that TOWIE is wholly scripted (despite him painfully obviously knowing that it’s not). He pulled the whole ‘TOWIE‘s scripted’ trick with Arg on Celebrity Juice this week who – just like his co-stars – defended that it’s not, which then prompted Keith to say that Arg “plays someone who has serious learning difficulties”. It was so unexpected but brilliantly funny. The good thing about Essex stars is that they don’t mind taking the Mick out of themselves so, thankfully, Arg clearly found this funny, too. Phew!

Will.i.am

However, my highlight by far this week was Jason Manford’s absolutely excellent ad-lib when the panellists were discussing will.i.am and Cheryl Cole’s recent collision. Then, the subject of The Voice UK was brought up – which was hosted by Juice team captain Holly Willoughby. Jason didn’t miss a trick when he piped up with

“Well it’s not the first car crash he’s been involved in.”

Seriously, if you didn’t see it, check it out here – it’s about 13 mins 25 secs in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nm3oYnAkBe0

 

So there we have it – another great week of Juice. It really does make you wonder how the same man responsible for this could have created that Keith Lemon: The Film

 

Twitter – @UKTVReviewer

Also, keep up-to-date with the latest TV news, reviews and interviews at www.thecustardtv.com, where some of my articles will also appear.

‘Celebrity Juice’ – Episode 8.1

The ever popular Celebrity Juice returned to ITV2 last night after a hiatus of a mere four or five months.

HOLLY WILLOUGHBY: SEX GODDESS

Firstly, it was finally great to see new opening titles, in which Rufus Hound is no longer mentioned after he quit mid-series seven. I found it hilarious that team captain Fearne Cotton’s pregnancy was brought up in the titles, with Keith quipping, “There’s Fearne Cotton, who is pregnant [loud laughter] – how did that ‘appen?” It immediately assured me, and I’m sure many other Juice viewers that just because she’s pregnant, it doesn’t mean Keith won’t continue to mercilessly mock Fearne.
Likewise, the introductions by Keith of the panellists – both regular and otherwise – were as funny as ever, as was the choice to surprise Holly by showing an advert which she made early in her career as an underwear model, in which she growled, “I’m a sex goddess!” Holly cringing and her peers’ utter bewilderment was just so entertaining! I bet her husband Dan – executive producer on the show – will have got it in the neck for that!
In fact, the showing of this ad led to Kelly Brook allowing Keith to make my favourite ad-lib of the whole episode when she asked him:

“Why are you so obsessed with boobs?”

To which he replied:

“Listen, if men weren’t obsessed with them, you’d be working at fucking Dixons!”

KEITH LEMON: NOT A SEX GOD

However, it didn’t take long for Keith to grab the opportunity to get his kit off and send-up the Prince Harry in Las Vegas story.
Is the sight of him flashing his penis still funny? I don’t think so. I adore Celebrity Juice and I first remember Keith getting fully naked at the beginning of the third series, which was hilarious – so unexpected! From then on, however, it just became mandatory for Leigh Francis to get his “tallywhacker” out in the name of entertainment. It’s happening episode, after episode, after episode and the joke has worn thin somewhat. Has anyone noticed that Keith uses the phrases “bang tidy”, “mot, mot, mot”, etc. less often now? The reason for this? He presumably didn’t want them to become overused and for people to be sick of them. Therefore, people still say these things because they aren’t said over and over by Keith any more, so the audiences haven’t become bored of them and subsequently still find them funny, so use them everyday, often not even thinking that they were first coined by Keith. Why, then, hasn’t Francis woken up, smelt the coffee and realised that no longer is his alter-ego’s nudity fresh and funny, it’s now tired and tedious.

LEMON HAS INDEED BEEN SQUEEZED

Unfortunately, I went to see Keith Lemon: The Film yesterday, too. I don’t know if you read my Lemon La Vida Loca Episode 1.1 review but I said in it that with all of the work Leigh Francis is doing at the moment relating to Keith Lemon, I hope he can keep it new, original and – most importantly of all – very funny. If Keith Lemon: The Film is anything to go by, he hasn’t. Don’t get me wrong, it was quite amusing and there were strong points (like Keith singing ‘When The Going Gets Tough’ to a gang mugging him) but it certainly didn’t touch the genius which I know deep down he possesses and which is evident in his previous shows. Actually, it seemed more of an opportunity to boast – “Look how many celebrities I can get into my movie!” and “Do you remember when I impersonated Mel B? I’ve dug the mask and costume back out!”
Plus, if Twitter is to be believed, Alex Zane is not one of those celebrity friends any longer. It really is worth looking at @LeighFrancis’s tweets from five or six days days ago: he pulls no punches with Zane!

But anyway, this is a Celebrity Juice review, not a Keith Lemon: The Film one and thankfully I still really like Juice…I just hope Keith keeps it in his pants, that’s all.

Twitter – @UKTVReviewer

Also, keep up-to-date with the latest TV news, reviews and interviews at www.thecustardtv.com, where some of my articles will also appear.