QI. Image shows from L to R: Alan Davies, Sandi Toksvig. Copyright: TalkbackThames


  • TV panel show
  • BBC Two / BBC One / BBC Four
  • 2003 - 2024
  • 312 episodes (21 series)

Panel game that contains lots of difficult questions and a large amount of quite interesting facts. Stars Sandi Toksvig, Stephen Fry and Alan Davies.

Episode menu

Series A, Episode 3 - Aquatic Animals

Aquatic Animals - Blue Whale


- The longest animal is in the world is the Lion's Mane Jellyfish, as described in the Sherlock Holmes story, The Adventure of the Lion's Mane. (Forfeit: Blue Whale) Correction: The longest animal in the world is in fact the bootlace worm. See Series C, Episode 10.

- Tangent: You can cure a jellyfish sting by urinating on it. Correction: Urinating on a jellyfish sting can actually make it worse. It can contain harmful bacteria as it passes through the urethra.

- Tangent: Lord Mackay of Clashfern and his apparent meanness with honey.

- Blue whales have small throats and can swallow nothing larger than a grapefruit. Their diet consists of eating 3 tonnes of krill every day.

- An octopus can be taught to unscrew the lids of jars and bottles. However, they forget after a day, so they have to learn it every day.

- Antarctica begins with "A", has six seas and no bees.

- AmIAnnoying.com ranks Clive Anderson as seventeen percent less annoying than Antarctica. Unlike Hans Christian Andersen, Gillian Anderson and Pamela Anderson, he is not a vegetarian.

- John Henry Anderson, the Great Wizard of the North, was the first magician to pull a rabbit out of a hat.

- Both Hans Christian Andersen and Joseph Stalin were the sons of a cobbler and a washerwoman.

- Tangent: Hans Christian Andersen is ranked less annoying than Clive Anderson on AmIAnnoying.com.

General Ignorance

- In Greek mythology, Atlas was punished by Zeus and was forced to carry the sky. (Forfeit: The World)

- Over 50% of the world's oxygen is provided by algae. (Forfeit: Trees)

- The driest place on Earth is the Dry Valleys Region of Antarctica. (Forfeit: Sahara Desert)

- The length of a day is not exactly 24 hours. The International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service is responsible for adding on occasional leap seconds.

Deleted Scenes

- Idi Amin declared himself King of Scotland. He also declared himself "Lord of all the Beasts of the Earth and the Fishes of the Sea" and "Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in General and in Uganda in particular".


- Clive Anderson: 26 points
- Meera Syal: 19 points
- Bill Bailey: 10 points
- Alan Davies: -20 points


For jellyfish correction, see The Second Book of General Ignorance.

Broadcast details

Thursday 25th September 2003
30 minutes


Show past repeats

Date Time Channel
Friday 15th April 2011 10:20pm Dave
Monday 22nd August 2011 7:20pm Dave
Monday 22nd August 2011 11:00pm Dave
Sunday 12th August 2012 2:40pm Dave
Sunday 12th August 2012 6:40pm Dave
Friday 21st December 2012 2:00pm Dave
Sunday 26th May 2013 3:00pm Dave
Sunday 26th May 2013 6:20pm Dave
Sunday 4th August 2013 2:20pm Dave
Sunday 4th August 2013 10:40pm Dave
Saturday 9th November 2013 7:40pm Dave
Sunday 10th November 2013 3:20pm Dave
Friday 27th December 2013 4:40pm Dave
Saturday 28th December 2013 12:20am Dave
Friday 9th January 2015 11:40pm Dave
Tuesday 24th March 2015 11:00pm Dave
Tuesday 14th July 2015 11:40pm Dave
Thursday 19th November 2015 9:40pm Dave
Monday 1st August 2016 2:20am Dave
Monday 1st August 2016 9:20pm Dave
Wednesday 9th November 2016 11:20pm Dave
Friday 13th January 2017 3:20pm Dave
Thursday 16th March 2017 2:00pm Dave
Friday 17th March 2017 12:40am Dave
Tuesday 16th January 2018 11:00pm Dave
Wednesday 17th January 2018 1:00am Dave
Wednesday 14th March 2018 1:00am Dave
Friday 18th May 2018 12:00am Dave
Friday 18th May 2018 2:00am Dave
Friday 7th September 2018 1:00am Dave
Friday 7th September 2018 9:00pm Dave
Friday 25th January 2019 11:40pm Dave
Saturday 26th January 2019 1:40am Dave
Monday 24th June 2019 8:20pm Dave

Cast & crew

Stephen Fry Host / Presenter
Alan Davies Regular Panellist
Guest cast
Bill Bailey Guest
Clive Anderson Guest
Meera Syal Guest
Writing team
Samantha Ball Researcher
Adam Jacot de Boinod Researcher
Sophie Johnstone Researcher
Molly Oldfield Researcher
Production team
Ian Lorimer Director
John Lloyd Producer
Phil Clarke Executive Producer
Nick King Editor
Jonathan Paul Green Production Designer
Howard Goodall Composer

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