Series L, Episode 11 - Lumped Together
- The panel are all asked which of their buzzers was investigated by the FBI. Jimmy's buzzer is "Lola" by The Kinks; Ronni's is "Lay Lady Lay" by Bob Dylan; David's is "Louie Louie" by The Kingsmen; and Alan's is "Little Willy" by The Sweet. The answer is David's buzzer, which was investigated by the FBI because they thought the lyrics were sexual. According to the FBI the lyric: "Ah, on that ship; I dream she there; I smell the rose; Ah, in her hair" actually went: "And on that chair; I lay her there; I felt my boner; In her hair." If you listen to the song does sound like it can fit the FBI's version.
- The thing that the inventor of the lava lamp did for leisure was directing nudist films (rather than porn films). Edward Craven Walker (1918-2000), said of his lava lamp that: "It starts from nothing, grows possibly a little feminine, then a little masculine, then breaks up and has children. It's a sexy thing." One of Walker's nudist films was the first such film to be on public release.
- Lab Lark Experiment: Stephen and the panel make their own lava lamps. They use a tennis ball tube containing a mixture of vegetable oil and water, then inject some colouring into this mixture, and then add Alka Seltzer. You then just put this tube on top of a lamp. Stephen only adds one pill, but the panellists add more to make it fizz more. Stephen's lava lamp however falls over so he has to mop up the mess.
- XL: One way you can make sure you dream about scantily clad women is to paint a picture of one all day while chewing on an orris root (which is used in perfumes and potpourris), and then get someone to place orris root in your mouth while you slept. French Victorian aristocrat Marie-Jean-Leon Lecoq, the Marquis d'Hervey de Saint-Denys did this, and would have lucid dreams, which is a dream that you have control over and are aware of. However, according to psychologist Richard Wiseman you can also have lucid dreams by checking your watch as often as you can, making sure to look at the numbers throughout the day. This results in dreams in which you are looking at the watch, but you will not be able to focus on the numbers. This forces you to realise that you are in a dream. Of course, this does not work if you looking at a watch that does not have numerals. 50% of people have had lucid dreams, and you are more likely to have them if you are a computer gamer.
- The chances are that if you are European then your great-great-great-great-grandmother threw their underwear at Franz Liszt. Aside from being a great pianist and composer he also had an affair with Lola Montez, an Irishwoman who also had an affair with Ludwig of Bavaria that caused a revolution in Bavaria; Liszt then became an abbe. One of the people that Liszt had an affair with, former pupil Olga Janina, pursued Liszt all over Europe and became so hysterical that she tried to stab Liszt and commit suicide.
- XL: The panel are shown a picture of some leaves and are asked which of them are actual leaves. The answer is five of the six leaves there are real, and one is an insect disguised as a leaf. It is a Phylliidae, which has evolved to look like a leaf in order to avoid being eaten by birds. On the downside they look so much like leaves they get nibbled on by caterpillars. They are found in Southeast Asia and Australia. There is also the satanic leaf-tailed gecko which looks like an autumnal leaf. There are also leaves that taste nice which have evolved to look like leaves that taste unpleasant. (Forfeit: Six)
- XL: The 40 shoplifting elephants hid their loot in specially made clothes. The Forty Elephants were a gang of shoplifters working between the 1700s-1950s, and came from the Elephant and Castle area of London. They worked using specially made muffs and false hands, would often attack loads of different shops all at the same time, and then hold lavish parties at the end of the day to celebrate. (Forfeit: In their trunks)
- The owner of the world's largest love handles is the beluga whale, and it uses its love handles to swim in the sea using special muscles. Beluga whales have no dorsal fins. They are hunted by various Arctic peoples because their blubber is rich in vitamin C. (Forfeit: Eric Pickles)
- What is this all about: "All that we caught, we left behind, and carry away all that we did not catch." The answer to this riddle is lice. This riddle is famous because it was given to Homer. The Oracle of Delphi told Homer that he would die on the island of Ios and that he should beware the riddles of young children. However, Homer according to legend (indeed Homer is a legendary figure and we do not know if he even existed) did go to Ios for Homer was a travelling minstrel who sang his poems. Homer was told this riddle by some native fisher boys, but then remembered what the Oracle had told him, and was so distracted by the Oracle's terrible yet accurate prediction that Homer slipped, cracked his head and died.
- The number of Spartans who died at the Battle of Thermopylae was 299. There were 300 Spartan soldiers defending a narrow coastal pass, plus their king Leonidas, so there were 301 Spartans fighting. The Spartans were also allied to Athenians who were fighting in the battle too against the Persians. The two who survived never took part in the battle. One was Pantitties, who went off to deliver a diplomatic message at the embassy. When he returned he thought he was the only survivor and hanged himself in shame. However, there was another survivor, Eurytus, who could not fight due to an eye infection. The closest to a contemporary account of the battle is from Herodotus, the father of history, who was born four years after the battle. Herodotus estimated that there were 5,000 Greek soldiers.
- The Birdman of Alcatraz did not keep any birds in his cell while he was imprisoned in Alcatraz because it was not allowed. Robert Franklin Stroud was allowed to keep canaries in his previous prison, but then was transferred to Alcatraz and was not allowed to keep them. Stroud was an expert on both canaries and swallows. The name of "Alcatraz" is a Moorish word. (Forfeit: Canaries)
- No-one knows for certain who was the first person to put stuff between two slices of bread and eat it. Bread however has been around for 30,000 years, so it is inconceivable to think that someone did not come up with the idea before the fourth Earl of Sandwich back in the 18th century. The earliest known sandwich dates back to Hillel the Elder, a rabbi from the 1st Century BC, who started a Passover custom of putting chopped nuts, apples, spices and wine between two flat breads. According to the Earl of Sandwich's official biographer, his idea of the sandwich was not due to his gambling, but his Ministerial work, because he was Postmaster General and First Lord of the Admiralty. (Forfeit: The Earl of Sandwich)
- Friday 19th December 2014
- BBC Two
- 30 minutes
Cast & crew
|Stephen Fry||Host / Presenter|
|Alan Davies||Regular Panellist|
|James Harkin||Script Editor|
|John Mitchinson||Question Writer|
|James Harkin||Question Writer|
|Molly Oldfield||Question Writer|
|Andrew Hunter Murray||Question Writer|
|Anne Miller||Question Writer|
|Stevyn Colgan||Question Writer|
|John Lloyd (as John Lloyd CBE)||Series Producer|
|Ruby Kuraishe||Executive Producer|
|Suzanne McManus||Executive Producer|
|Justin Pollard||Associate Producer|
|Jonathan Paul Green||Production Designer|