Thank God You're Here - Paul Merton Page 3

Thank God You're Here. Image shows from L to R: Clive Anderson, Hamish Blake, Sally Lindsay, Michael McIntyre, Rufus Jones. Copyright: TalkbackThames.

Thank God You're Here

Improvisation comedy show hosted by Paul Merton. Each week four celebrities walk through a door into an unknown situation

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zooo

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 4:38am
  • United Kingdom
  • 69,186 posts

It was a bit weird when Paul interviewed them after each scene saying, how did that make you feel? Did you enjoy that?

You didn't get Clive Anderson asking Josie Lawrence if she'd been nervous making up a song about childbirth with Richard Vranch at the piano.

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Stan Doubt

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 4:38am
  • England
  • 2,909 posts

To be honest I thought Ben was OK, John Thompson was just cringeworthy unfortunately, didn't laugh once at his one.

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Brendan

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 4:51am
  • England
  • 2 posts

This was quite disappointing.

The most surprising thing was that Fern was *good*, better than the others, who are all professional comedians/comic actors.

What this show needed was some of the talent you can see at the Comedy Store improvising twice a week (mainly the old Whose Line guys, amongst others). The problem was that I presume ITV wanted recognisable (ITV) stars.

Even Paul was a letdown, I was thinking "and now watch the master", but it was pretty weak too, far from the quick-witted mind I've seen live and on HIGNFY.

The format was diluted by the introductions, interviews etc, but stretching the minimum material to the maximum screen time seems to be the norm in this age (thank you reality shows). Unnecessary in a show like this, it's not as if there would be vast writing or filming expenses incurred by upping the content and losing the filler, it's improvisation for god sake.

I was hopeful for this series having watched the Australian clips, but it's all down to the guest bookings in the end.

B

B

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Aaron

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 4:56am
  • Royal Berkshire, England
  • 68,308 posts

Hi Brendan, welcome. Good review indeed and uh... Yeah. I agree. Then again, it was the first show, so perhaps (in Paul's case anyway) he'll improve.

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Stan Doubt

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 4:57am
  • England
  • 2,909 posts
Quote: zooo @ January 12, 2008, 11:38 PM

It was a bit weird when Paul interviewed them after each scene saying, how did that make you feel? Did you enjoy that?

You didn't get Clive Anderson asking Josie Lawrence if she'd been nervous making up a song about childbirth with Richard Vranch at the piano.

Yes, it all seemed a bit amaturish. Ah well.

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Badge

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 6:13am
  • London, England
  • 9,490 posts

Don't know why there are so many negatives on here - I have just watched it and thought it was very entertaining. Certainly a good ITV1 Saturday night show IMO. No surprise Fern was good, as she always has to improvise on live TV and was brought up with comedy. I also want her diet book. John Thomson was ropey in his politician set-piece but maybe he didn't get to grips with the situation early enough. His insert pieces and the nun scene showed him off better. I thought Miller and the Aussie geezer were good value too. Merton's scene wasn't great but he can be a bit hit and miss anyway, even at the Comedy Store. When he is on form he is unbeatable, and I'm sure we'll get the chance to see this over the coming weeks.

8/10.

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Spagett

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 8:43am
  • Manchester, England
  • 450 posts

It was a weird show, not terrible but not brilliant either. I agree that the biggest surprise was how bad Paul Merton was, he just kept stalling and repeating the feed line,

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charlier

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 11:34am
  • Surrey, England
  • 49 posts

Ben Miller - Identical set/mostly the same cast lines as Phil Nicol, although he was much funnier, and ended up destroying bits of the set :D

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catskillz

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 12:09pm [Edited]
  • Merseyside, England
  • 3,396 posts

God, I f**king hate this type of shit. Who wants to hear stuff made up on the spare of the moment, when you could have a proper sitcom or sketch show instead?

By the way, I've just looked up John Thomson's Date of Birth, and I can't believe he's only 38! He's been around for so long. He must've only been about 24 when he appeared in the first Alan Partridge series, as the Scouse Ferry driver with the facial tick. Christ, I've just realised, he's only 6 years older than Ant and Dec, and he almost looks like he could be their Dad! Then agian, to be fair, Ant and Dec do look a lot younger than the average 32-year-olds.

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Ian Wolf

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 1:03pm
  • Stockton-on-Tees, England
  • 2,837 posts

I guess I'm echoing the views of other people here. Surprising to see Fren Britton doing so well, whilst the others (including Merton) did not do as good, although each performer had their own highlights I think. Hamish was also good I thought, although he has had some experience in the Australian version.

Overall, I do plan to see the next episode, mainly because Clive Anderson is in it I believe. I can't wait to see Paul turn the tables on him.

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Nick

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 6:47pm [Edited]
  • Japan
  • 818 posts
Quote: Brendan @ January 12, 2008, 11:51 PM

This was quite disappointing.

The format was diluted by the introductions, interviews etc, but stretching the minimum material to the maximum screen time seems to be the norm in this age (thank you reality shows).

Completely agree with this.

They wasted so much time asking people whether they were nervous that it killed the pace of the show.

I agree that Fern did well and that Merton and Thompson struggled but I also think this was down to some of the situations that they were put in. Some of the feed lines to Fern really led her into obvious jokes whereas Merton and Thompson were led down comedy dead-ends.

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Dave

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 7:12pm [Edited]
  • United Kingdom
  • 1,171 posts
Quote: zooo @ January 12, 2008, 11:32 PM

Has he had something chopped off?

Has Ben Miller had something chopped off? What do you mean?

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zooo

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 7:47pm
  • United Kingdom
  • 69,186 posts

I was making an unfunny and pointless reference to the fact that the previous poster had made a typo and called him a comedienne.

I find it best to ignore me.

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Richard Wells

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 7:58pm
  • Northamptonshire, England
  • 1,016 posts

Does anybody know who who is on the show next week as i'll definitely be watching.

If I was them I'd have Fern Britton on every week, Even if she does have a foul mouth lol.

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Aaron

  • Sunday 13th January 2008, 9:09pm
  • Royal Berkshire, England
  • 68,308 posts

COMEDY: Thank God You're Here
On: ITV1 London
Date: Saturday 19th January 2008 (starting in 6 days)
Time: 21:00 to 22:00 (1 hour long)

Improvisational comedy show presented by Paul Merton in which star guests are forced to rely on their wits after they are thrust into a set-up which they know nothing about. Tonight's guests include Australian comic Hamish Blake, presenter Clive Anderson, Coronation Street favourite Sally Lindsay and stand-up Michael McIntyre. Plus, Paul Merton steps into his own scene which he knows nothing about.