QI: Beyond a Game Show

November 2, 2015

151005_phill-lupitusCRLeft: Quick 9 x 12 inch sketch of comedian Phill Jupitus wearing a hat on a 2005 episode of "Q.I." (Note: he does have two ls in his first name. I didn't realize that when I labeled the sketch.) Brush pen with color added with 15 mm Montana Acrylic Marker; on Fluid Easy-Block 140 lb. hot press watercolor paper.

I’ve written about my subscription to Acorn TV before. It enables me to watch all sorts of British TV shows that I either watched in my youth (“Inspector Morse”), or missed because our local PBS station was doing a pledge drive and their schedules were chaotic (Vera), or never got to see in the first place (too many shows to mention).

Last month I finished off the two “new” seasons of “QI” posted on Acorn. The shows are not really “new” because they were taped in 2005, but they are new to me.

“QI” is a delightfully raucous chat between Stephen Fry and four actors/comedians/celebrities. The four guests form a “panel.” Fry poses questions loosely based on a topic. Members of the panel attempt to answer the questions correctly, without stating the obvious wrong answer (penalties and loud warning noises for that), and it is everywhere underpinned by the desire to say something “quite interesting.”

I love this show so much I wish they would make a new episode every day. For a couple difficult weeks, watching an episode at night was the only way I could relax enough to go to bed. It took my mind off “stuff” and put my mind on the trail of interesting ideas to look into. Always a better place for my mind.

Yours too? I think you should give it a try. Working alone as I do, I sometimes go for days without talking much to anyone (Dick is also a workaholic). “QI” is like having an evening out with extremely funny and entertaining friends.

I end up spending 29 minutes laughing very hard, and thinking.

Note: I'm distressed to learn that the letter M will be the last series to be hosted by Fry and that he'll be replaced by Sandy Toksvig going forward in 2016. I really enjoy Fry. However, the good news is that there are 10 more years of episodes, or the letters E through M, that I'll be able to enjoy with Fry. I want to see them NOW! Also, thanks to the fabulous "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" with Clive Anderson, I know who Sandi Toksvig is. I look forward to seeing what fun she comes up with. 

    • Alison A
    • November 2, 2015

    Agree, QI is great… Sandi T is often on it, i think she is a good buddy of Stephen Fry… he is great, highly knowledgeable and wicked sense of humour… she is very similar actually, so prob a good choice to take over…

  1. Reply

    I agree completely. This is one of the few shows that I really have a really good laugh out loud. (the other was an Australian panel show “Spicks and Specks”).
    I had not heard about the change, and did not even realize it was still going as all our episodes are so old (but worth watching a second or third time) . I hope the change works, as the chemistry between the panel was great !

  2. Reply

    Alissa, I’m glad you enjoy this show too. Sometimes I laugh so hard…
    I don’t know the Australian show you mentioned.

    At least there are more episodes of Q.I. I haven’t seen yet, and more coming. But I wish they would filter through to the US faster!

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