Friday, 11 November 2011

Mastermind for Children In Need

Yes, its another comedians only special, as has become customary for both Children in Need and Comic Relief. So without further ado lets cast an eye down the list of runners and riders. Firstly we have Karen Taylor. I’ll be honest, I’m not that familiar with her work, but she has had her own series on BBC3. Likewise, I hadn’t previously heard of Imran Yusuf, but that’s hardly surprising since in comedy terms he’s still pretty much a fresh faced younger. A success at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2010, he’s also had a guest slot on Michael Mcintyre’s Comedy Roadshow. Now, Russell Kane I have heard of. Very much flavor of the month at the moment. He’s done quite a bit of TV, and I think he won what used to be called the Perrier Award at Edinburgh last year. Finally, Jarred Christmas. Shows how much I know , for I’d always thought that he was Australian. No, he’s a New Zealander. Sorry Jarred. A well known face who’s done more than his fair share of TV work.

Karen was answering on the Life and Work of Fred Dibnah. I’ll be honest, I didn’t know that I knew that he was born in Bolton, but the answer leapt to my lips as soon as the question was asked. That was it for me, though. Not so Karen. It’s nice to see that slebs have at least had a real go at learning their subjects, and Karen’s 14 was a good return on her time investment.

Imran had picked what appeared on paper to be this year’s ‘bitten off rather more than you can chew’ subject with Jackie Chan : The Hong Kong Years. I don’t know how many movies Jackie Chan made in Hong Kong , but it was a hell of a lot, I’m sure. Under those circumstances his 9 and no passes was by no means a poor performance. Still, being 5 behind after one round meant that he was out of contention for the top prize .

Russell Kane had picked tonight’s traditional Mastermind subject in The Life and Novels of Evelyn Waugh. It’s generally known that the questions on sleb versions of Mastermind tend to be rather gentler than they are on the real mckoy, especially the GK round, but I have to say that this wasn’t far off the standard of a set of normal questions. Which makes his performance in getting 18 correct answers a very good one indeed. 4 points ahead with only one first round to go. A very good position to be in.

“Follow that !” challenged John. “No!” replied Jarred. Fair play. He got was probably the best laugh of the night when he announced the title of his specialist subject – Transformers – The Early Years. He was going pretty well , too, until he started agonizing over the answers he knew that he knew but he couldn’t remember. Better to let it go and move on. As it was, he finished with 10. Point of interest for this show ? Well, there was not one single pass at all in the 4 first rounds.

We were treated to a little chat before the start of each GK round, which was a good signal that we were using the 2 minute GK format tonight. Imran didn’t ever manage to set into a good rhythm in his round, but he battled through to take another 8 points, bringing his total to 17. So unfortunately he never actually got to lead at any stage of the competition tonight. Jarred showed us his bronze coloured shoes, indicating his wish to finish third tonight. Well that looked pretty much on the cards as he meandered his way to 9 correct answers, but no more, taking his total to 19. So he did get to lead the competition briefly. Karen followed, and as it happened I found hers to be the most difficult of the GK rounds tonight. I had 2 of her questions wrong – 1 each of both Imran and Russell’s, and a full house on Jarred’s. Karen herself struggled, but managed to take her score to 22 which at least meant that Russell could not afford to have a total mental breakdown. Of course he didn’t. He set the highest GK score of the night, with 11, which was more than good enough to take the trophy. Well played.

The Details
Karen Taylor The Life and Work of Fred Dibnah14 - 08 - 022 – 0
Imran YusufJackie Chan- The Early Years9 - 08-217 – 2
Russell KaneThe Life and Novels of Evelyn Waugh18 - 011- 229 – 2
Jarred ChristmasTransformers – The Early Years10 - 09 - 019 – 0

OC and UC reviews to follow tomorrow

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