British Comedy Guide

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


BBC Two and BBC One panel show focusing on quite interesting facts. 233 episodes (pilot + 16 series), 2003 - 2018. Stars Sandi Toksvig, Stephen Fry and Alan Davies.

Another series is in development.
Series N, Episode 1 is repeated on Dave tomorrow at 12am.
Recording at The London Studios. Tickets

Series A, Episode 6 - Antidotes

Full synopsis

Antidotes - Pliny the Elder.


- When asked why he had a horseshoe on his door, physicist Niels Bohr answered, "Of course I don't believe in it, but I understand it brings you luck, whether you believe in it or not."

- When asked in a radio interview if she thought the barriers of the British class system had broken down, Barbara Cartland answered, "Of course they have, or I wouldn't be sitting here talking to someone like you."

- When asked by a priest, "Do you forgive your enemies," the dying Spanish general Ramon Blanco y Erenas answered, "No, I don't have any enemies. I've had them all shot."

- The antidotes of QI's patron saint - Pliny the Elder:

- To cure epilepsy, eat the heart of a black jackass, outside, on the second day of the moon. Alternatively, eat lightly poached bear testes, a dried camel brain with honey, or drink fresh gladiator's blood.

- Tangent: It is impossible to lick your own elbow. According to legend, if you can, you live for ever. Correction: This was proven wrong in Series H, Episode 3 (Hoaxes) when a member of the audience did lick their own elbows.

- To cure incontinence, touch the tips of the genitals with linen or papyrus. Alternatively, drink a glass of wine mixed with the ash of a burned pig's penis, or urinate in your or your neighbour's dog's bed.

- To cure haemorrhoids, use a cream made from pig lard and the rust of a chariot wheel. Alternatively, use swan fat or the urine of a female goat.

- To cure headaches, tie some fox genitals to your head.

- Tangent: The British bee died out during World War One. Modern bees come from bees introduced from Mexico.

- To cure choking on a piece of bread, take a piece from the same loaf of bread, and put it in each ear.

- Tangent: Pliny the Elder was killed when Mount Vesuvius erupted and destroyed Pompeii. He went to investigate the eruption, wearing a pillow tied to his head to protect him.

- 24 people are killed every year by members of the Swiss army, due to the high availability of guns, and that Switzerland has national service.

- In the Vietnam War, U.S. medics prevented wounded soldiers from swallowing their own tongues by fastening them to their cheeks with safety pins.

- The army of Costa Rica is attractive because it does not exist. It was disbanded in 1949. The constitution forbids a national army - the only country in the world to do so.

- There are no Alsatians in the Spanish army because they have an IQ of 60, and the minimum IQ for the army is 70.

General Ignorance

- The largest frog in the world, the Goliath frog of Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea is mute. (Forfeit: Ribbit)

- Tangent: Only one frog in the world goes, "Ribbit", - the Southern Pacific Tree frog. This is the frog that lives in Hollywood. Recorded locally, it has been used in hundreds of movies, leading people to think that all frogs make the same sound.

- An acre is 40 poles long by 4 poles wide. (Forfeit: The Polish army)

- The Chicago World's Fair of 1933 was opened by light from Arcturus, the brightest star in the Northern Hemisphere.

Deleted Scenes

- Tangent: In China, there is a tribe called the Dong who sing to each other rather than talk. The government gave them a telephone box, but because everyone knew each other, it was used to keep chickens in.

- Tangent: The word "Hello" was decided to be the standard way to answer the telephone, after a New York Times competition. Before, the word used was, "Ahoy, hoy".

- George III's last words were, "I think I'll shall have another of Mr. Bellamy's pork pies." He, like Elvis Presley, died on the toilet.


- Danny Baker: 19 points
- Howard Goodall: 17 points
- Jo Brand: 13 points
- Alan Davies: 8 points

Broadcast details

Thursday 16th October 2003
30 minutes


  1. Sunday 26th December 2010 at 7:40pm on Dave
  2. Sunday 10th April 2011 at 8:20pm on Dave
  3. Wednesday 15th June 2011 at 10:20pm on Dave
  4. Thursday 16th June 2011 at 1:05am on Dave
  5. Monday 8th August 2011 at 7:20pm on Dave
  6. Wednesday 21st December 2011 at 11:20am on Dave
  7. Wednesday 21st December 2011 at 4:20pm on Dave
  8. Sunday 8th July 2012 at 9:40pm on Dave
  9. Tuesday 30th October 2012 at 5:20pm on Dave
  10. Wednesday 31st October 2012 at 1:20am on Dave
  11. Monday 17th December 2012 at 2:40pm on Dave
  12. Wednesday 13th February 2013 at 10:40pm on Dave
  13. Thursday 14th February 2013 at 1:40am on Dave
  14. Sunday 19th May 2013 at 2:20pm on Dave
  15. Sunday 19th May 2013 at 6:20pm on Dave
  16. Sunday 8th September 2013 at 2:45am on Dave
  17. Sunday 8th September 2013 at 3:20pm on Dave
  18. Monday 5th January 2015 at 11:35pm on Dave
  19. Thursday 12th March 2015 at 11:00pm on Dave
  20. Friday 13th March 2015 at 2:45am on Dave
  21. Monday 6th July 2015 at 11:40pm on Dave
  22. Tuesday 7th July 2015 at 9:40pm on Dave
  23. Monday 26th October 2015 at 11:30pm on Dave
  24. Tuesday 5th April 2016 at 12:50am on Dave
  25. Tuesday 5th April 2016 at 9:20pm on Dave
  26. Wednesday 20th July 2016 at 12:20am on Dave
  27. Wednesday 20th July 2016 at 9:20pm on Dave
  28. Wednesday 4th January 2017 at 3:20pm on Dave
  29. Tuesday 7th March 2017 at 2:00pm on Dave
  30. Wednesday 8th March 2017 at 12:20am on Dave
  31. Wednesday 10th January 2018 at 11:40pm on Dave
  32. Thursday 11th January 2018 at 1:40am on Dave
  33. Friday 23rd March 2018 at 1:00am on Dave
  34. Friday 23rd March 2018 at 11:00pm on Dave

Cast & crew

Regular cast
Stephen Fry Host / Presenter
Alan Davies Regular Panellist
Guest cast
Danny Baker Guest
Jo Brand Guest
Howard Goodall Guest
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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