The Unbelievable Truth. David Mitchell. Copyright: BBC / Random Entertainment.

The Unbelievable Truth

BBC Radio 4 panel show built on truth and lies. 153 episodes (pilot + 25 series), 2006 - 2021. Stars David Mitchell.

Another series is in development.
Series 18, Episode 6 is repeated on Radio 4 Extra on Monday at 9am.

Series 7, Episode 1

Alan Davies, Jack Dee, Marcus Brigstocke and Lucy Porter play the panel game built on truth and lies hosted by David Mitchell. Subjects covered tonight include Enid Blyton, curry, flies and breasts.

Further details

The Truths

Marcus Brigstocke - Flies

- Aristotle believed that flies only had four legs. He was so trusted that this was believed by most people for over 1,000 years. Found by Alan.

- Fruit flies behave erratically when drunk and fly in odd swerves. Such flies are known as "cheap date flies". Found by Alan.

- Some geckos have see-through bellies so you can see the flies they have eaten. Found by Lucy.

- Most flies prefer to mate in the middle of a room rather than in a corner. Found by Alan.

- Flies have sperm that is 20 times longer than their bodies. Their testicles make up 11% of their body mass. Found by Jack.

Lucy Porter - Breasts

- The technical name for the gap between a woman's breasts is the "intermammary sulcus". It was not given the name until the year 1997. Found by Jack.

- Pierced nipples can be dated back to Victorian times. They were done by a jeweller. Found by Marcus.

- The mermaid logo used by Starbucks originally had exposed breasts, but they were later covered up to make the chain more High Street friendly. Found by Alan.

- The first exposed breasts on television where those of Jayne Mansfield at the 1957 Oscars. There is some debate about how "accidental" it was. Successfully smuggled.

- Dolly Parton's breasts are insured for £375,000 between them. Successfully smuggled.

Alan Davies - Enid Blyton

- Blyton enjoyed playing tennis in the nude. Successfully smuggled.

- Blyton and her second husband owned their own personal golf course. Successfully smuggled.

- You can get a novelty Noddy smoke alarm. Successfully smuggled.

- Noddy is called "Oui-Oui" in France. Successfully smuggled.

- One of Blyton's most successful books was entitled Dame Slap and Her School. Successfully smuggled.

Jack Dee - Curry

- In 1912, Wilbur Scoville invented the Scoville scale used to measure the heat intensity of chilli peppers. It is controversial as it involves the use of human taste which is subjective. Found by Marcus.

- In Japan you can buy a lemon and curry flavoured drink. The bottle is sealed with a marble. Found by Alan.

- In 2003, Sharwood's released a range of products called "bundh", but later discovered that this word in Punjabi for "arse". Successfully smuggled.

- Britain exports chicken tikka masala to India, as it was invented in Britain. Successfully smuggled.

- In the Swiss version of Cludeo Colonel Mustard is known as Madame Curry. Successfully smuggled.


- Alan Davies: 4 points
- Jack Dee: 0 points
- Lucy Porter: -2 points
- Marcus Brigstocke: -4 points

Broadcast details

Monday 4th April 2011
BBC Radio 4
30 minutes

Cast & crew

Regular cast
David Mitchell Host / Presenter
Guest cast
Marcus Brigstocke Guest
Alan Davies Guest
Lucy Porter Guest
Jack Dee Guest
Writing team
Colin Swash Writer
John Finnemore Writer
Production team
Jon Naismith Producer

Supporters and subscribers get more

Additional content and tools are available across the site for Supporters and BCG Pro subscribers. On this page you can:

  • Broadcast details of 3 further repeats of this episode

Donate (for fans) BCG Pro

Already a donor or Pro user?