Series G, Episode 8 : Germany
- Friday 15th January 2010
- BBC One
- 30 minutes
- 5.4 million viewers
- Don't Mention the War Forfeit: The panel are deducted points each time they mention the war.
- XL: The panel are given a selection of German "Loan Words", which are words in German that we use in English.
- The Germans are not that upset about losing the 1966 World Cup. While the English consider the Germans to be their great football rivals, the Germans consider the Dutch to be their great football rivals. Their great match as they see it was the 1974 Final where they beat the Netherlands 2-1. (Forfeit: Very)
- The Germans confiscated Dutchmen's trousers because of sponsorship. During the 2006 World Cup in Germany, thousands of Dutch fans attended matches wearing orange lederhosen, with big pockets which could carry beer and a lion's tail. They were called "leeuwenhosen" which in Dutch means "lion pants". However, they displayed the name of a beer called Bavaria, which was not the official beer of the World Cup and therefore broke sponsorship rules. Therefore, in Holland's first game against the Côte d'Ivoire, they had to watch the match in their underpants.
- XL: The panel are shown a picture of a plastic device with a smily face and are asked what it is. It is a spuk, a device that orders men not to lift up toilet seats and make them sit down on the lavatory. The voice on it is so loud that everyone in a public lavatory can hear it. "Spuk" is German for "Spook", and it is also an acronym for "Sitzpinkeln Unter Kontrolle". "Sitzpinkeln" means "to stand up when urinating", while "Stehpinkeln" means "to sit down when urinating".
- XL: German students often clean people's houses while naked for a living. This is known as "Nacktputzservice". Nudism is a very German thing, as the movement as we know it came from there, in ways such as the Frei Körper Kultur (FKK) or "Free body culture". The movement was popular in the 1930s but the Nazis banned it, with Goring being the most against the movement. Countries bording Germany such as Poland and Switzerland now get angry with naked German ramblers coming across the border. There are nude beachers in Germany. The Englischer Garten (English Garden) in Munich and the Tiergarten, Berlin's largest park, have nudist aeras.
- The most repeated television programme of all time is Dinner for One, a comedy sketch starring British comedian Freddie Frinton. It is shown on every German TV channel on New Year's Eve, every year since 1972. The sketch involves Frinton serving a Christmas dinner for his mistress played by May Warden, who is rather mad and old. Frinton pours out drinks for imaginary guests and gets drunk himself. In Germany, the sketch is almost unavoidable. People even hold parties for it. The sketch itself originated in 1920 and was performed in music halls. A German TV presenter saw it in 1963 and asked for it to be performed in Germany. So they did the sketch live once, and then in 1972 they returned to do a recorded version. It has since been repeated ever since.
- XL: Uncle Wiggly Wings dropped chocolate into Berlin for children. In 1948, the Soviet Union cut off Berlin from the rest of the world. This resulted in the Berlin airlift, in which British and Americans dropped in food for the people of Berlin. An American pilot, Gail Halvorsen, had two sticks of gum and said to the children and said that if they shared it with the other children, he would return tomorrow with more candy. So Halvorsen, nicknamed Uncle Wiggly Wings, wiggled his wings over Berlin and dropped in chocolate for the children every day. It was known as Operation Little Vittles. American children gave their own candy to help. The candy was floated down using silk parachutes. A total of 2,223,000 tonnes of supplies were dropped during the Berlin airlift.
- If you get involved in an argument on the internet, inevitably it will involve a comparison with Hitler or the Nazis. This is known as "Godwin's Law" or "Godwin's Rule of Nazi Comparison", which states "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1." Once the Nazis or Hitler is mentioned, the discussion is considered closed and the person who mentioned the Nazis or Hitler is generally deemed to have lost the argument. Examples include people saying that fox hunting is a good thing because Hitler banned it. The rule itself is generally overlooked when talking about Nazism itself. The rule is named after Mike Godwin, who is general councillor of the Wikimedia Council.
- You could use a Monopoly set to escape from a POW camp by hiding real money with the Monopoly money and silk maps in the board (paper is too bulky). A man called Clutty Hutton turned Monopoly sets into escape kits for MI9. He set up pretend charities which gave the games to British soldiers in the camps. Hutton's earlier work involved hiding compasses in tunic buttons. The Germans got wise to this and unscrewed the buttons, so Hutton reversed the thread so when it was screwed the button tightened. The Germans got wise to this as well. Hutton then used razor blades which were magnetised at one end so that the "G" of Gillette faced north. Other things sent to British POWs included blankets that when wettened gave the outline of a great coat which they could cut out and use as a template. They also sent them dice containing different coloured dyes to colour the coats. There were also playing cards that when thrown in water peeled open and had money in them. (Forfeit: Get Out of Jail Free)
- Brideshead Revisited was written by Evelyn Waugh. (Forfeit: Evelyn War)
- The panel are show a picture of a dog and are asked what breed it is. The dog in question is a German Shepherd, which has been the official name for what was previously called the Alsatian since 1977. After World War One, English people stopped calling German Shepherds by this name because they did not like anything with German, so they called them Alsatian wolfhounds in 1918. The wolfhound was then dropped.
- The Munich Oktoberfest takes place mostly in September. It generally begins on the third Sunday of September (except when it falls on the 15th, in which case it starts on fourth Sunday - the 22nd) and ends on the first Sunday of October. As 3rd October is a holiday in Germany, Oktoberfest can last an extra 17th day if 3rd October is a Monday, or an 18th if it is a Tuesday. It is one of the largest regular festivals or fairs in the world, with six million people a year visiting it. 6,940,600 litres of beer are drunk during it.
- The panel are played a section of the song "My Favourite Things" from The Sound of Music and are asked what is wrong with it. The problem is the line "schnitzel with noodles", because schnitzel is not normally served with noodles. It was chosen because it rhymes with "crisp apple strudels". The lyrics were written by Oscar Hammerstein II. Other oddities concerning The Sound of Music include the end. While most people think they get into Switzerland, they actually land in Bavaria, quite near Hitler's private house, near Salzburg. In actual fact, the Von Trapp family walked 100 miles down to Innsbruck down towards the Italian border. Luckily, they got there the day before the border shut.
- XL: At 11:11 on the 11th November the Germans celebrate the start of their carnival season, with runs all the way to Ash Wendesday. This is much older than Armistice Day. "Carnival" means "to leave the meat".
- Jo Brand: -6 points
- Rob Brydon: -7 points
- Alan Davies: -36 points
- Sean Lock: -76 points
- Saturday 16th January 2010 at 23.15 (45 minute version)
- Wednesday 20th January 2010 at 23.20
- Tuesday 23rd November 2010 at 21.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Friday 21st January 2011 at 20.30 on BBC1
- Tuesday 25th January 2011 at 22.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Thursday 14th April 2011 at 23.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Thursday 26th May 2011 at 23.20 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Wednesday 29th June 2011 at 19.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Thursday 29th September 2011 at 20.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Thursday 29th September 2011 at 23.20 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Sunday 6th November 2011 at 21.40 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Monday 7th November 2011 at 00.20 on Dave (55 minute version)
- Sunday 11th December 2011 at 18.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Saturday 3rd March 2012 at 21.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Sunday 4th March 2012 at 01.35 on Dave (45 minute version)
- Monday 14th May 2012 at 19.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Tuesday 10th July 2012 at 19.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Tuesday 10th July 2012 at 22.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Sunday 25th November 2012 at 15.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Sunday 25th November 2012 at 19.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Saturday 12th July 2014 at 20.00 on Dave
- Wednesday 13th August 2014 at 23.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Thursday 14th August 2014 at 20.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Sunday 12th October 2014 at 15.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Monday 18th May 2015 at 19.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Monday 18th May 2015 at 22.40 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Sunday 26th July 2015 at 16.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Tuesday 13th October 2015 at 24.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
- Wednesday 14th October 2015 at 20.00 on Dave (60 minute version)
Cast & crew
|Stephen Fry||Host / Presenter|
|Alan Davies||Regular Panellist|
|Katie Taylor||Exec Producer|
|David Morley (as Dave Morley)||Exec Producer|
|Jonathan Paul Green||Production Design|
|Other cast & crew|
|John Mitchinson||Question Wrangler|
|Justin Pollard||Question Wrangler|
|James Harkin||Question Wrangler|
|Molly Oldfield||Question Wrangler|
Rob Brydon talks about the advantages of men wearing long socks.
Jo Brand talks about what happened to her when she was confronted by some Germans on holiday.
It's so rare to see two women sitting next to each other on a comedy panel show that even Sandi Toksvig seemed surprised. On QI last week Toksvig and team-mate Ronni Ancona had a witty old time sparring with Jack Dee and Alan Davies - even if the episode was called Girls and Boys and had questions all about girls and, er, boys. The show was funny, as QI usually is. Which is just the point. Women can perform brilliantly on panel shows, so why don't they appear more often? The usual one lass, three lads format is as tired patronising and boring as the older male/younger woman newsreading cliche. It's time for change.Emily Booth, Broadcast, 15th January 2010
The "G"-series topic this week was "Germany", with guests Jo Brand, Rob Brydon and Sean Lock joining regulars Alan Davies and "QImaster" Stephen Fry. The juice of QI isn't as succulent as it once was, but you're always guaranteed some eyebrow-raising trivia and a few good moments of comedy banter. I'm frankly bemused Jo Brand still gets work (because she's like a comedy blackhole to me), and this episode wasn't helped by weaker than usual turns from Brydon and Lock.
Still, "Germany" was a topic that particularly interested me, as I used to live in Germany and once worked with a Germany lady living here in England, so cultural differences and Anglo-German relations is something I've discussed many times. It's certainly interesting subject matter for Brits, who have a strange relationship and perception of our European neighbours. In this edition of QI we learned that Germans don't care that England beat them in the 1966 World Cup, that they're unaware their countrymen have a reputation for rudely claiming sun loungers with beach towels while on holiday, and that they broadcast an old Freddie Frinton and May Warden comedy sketch called Dinner For One every New Year's Eve (simulteneously, on every channel).Dan Owen, Dan's Media Digest, 16th January 2010