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Now this is a story all about how / My life got flipped turned upside down / Even though I wasn't telling a story in the Red Chair
July 24, 2012 10:10 PM   Subscribe


 
I was hoping Smith would do the little head wave at the end of the song.
posted by anewnadir at 10:23 PM on July 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


we just watched that episode! might i also suggest watching the second story in the red chair.

i love graham norton with zero irony. his couch is often interesting and he's fantastic and letting the guests shine.
posted by nadawi at 10:25 PM on July 24, 2012 [6 favorites]


Am I imagining things, or are TV studio audiences much more fun and enthusiastic in the UK? They all seem to be such good sports no matter what the content.
posted by CynicalKnight at 10:26 PM on July 24, 2012


Watched this, for the second time last night. Wife love this show, and I have to say I'm becoming a sucker for it too.
posted by Neale at 10:42 PM on July 24, 2012


Gary Barlow's hair looks really weird. So is Will's, in a dramatically different way.
posted by alex_skazat at 11:01 PM on July 24, 2012


I am going through a rather rough patch at the moment and that was exactly what I needed right now. I laughed and laughed and for a moment all was well. Thank you so much for posting that.
posted by Joey Michaels at 11:04 PM on July 24, 2012 [7 favorites]


Will Smith's hair has seen the dethroning and the re-installment of the hi-top fade as the most fly of current hairstyles.
posted by Jon_Evil at 11:26 PM on July 24, 2012


R0xx0r3d.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 11:33 PM on July 24, 2012


Wait? People like Graham Norton?

It's like my life just got turned around.

I do find his intrusion in Dr Who as annoying as his comedic interview technique
posted by Mezentian at 11:43 PM on July 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Graham is the best. It's very weird. When I moved to the UK, the day we got our digital TV tuner installed, the first show that popped up was Graham Norton (about 8 years ago). I had never heard of him. OMG, he's SO GAY! I loved it. But then when we moved to Switzerland, and got our cable working properly, the first show to pop up was Graham Norton. Just recently, after a long while, we got around to fixing our tuner again (home-made PVR complications) and there was Graham.

We just watched an old episode from our PVR with Justin Bieber and Jack Black, from years ago. It was loads of fun. (I hadn't really ever seen that much of this Bieber kid before. I largely ignore pop culture. I can do that, I'm old).
posted by Goofyy at 12:09 AM on July 25, 2012


It's like my life got flipped, turned upside-down

FTFY.
posted by Mikey-San at 12:32 AM on July 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


This actually made like Garry Barlow for a brief instant. I think the audience were reading off a teleprompter though.
posted by Pre-Taped Call In Show at 12:40 AM on July 25, 2012


LOVE Graham Norton, though this one is still my favourite episode ever.
posted by Wantok at 12:48 AM on July 25, 2012 [6 favorites]


I loved that. So fun. He didn't hesitate for a moment, either.
posted by gt2 at 1:39 AM on July 25, 2012


Totally love Graham Norton Show*. He's managed to strike a very good balance between interviews, comedy and stardom and delivers it all in a personal, candid, relaxed and very fun way despite having all his guests on the couch at the same time and having ping ponging between them.

My OMG-graham-is-a-talkshow-genius-moment was when I realized that he brings great stand up comedians as guests who interweave their acts in to the natural flow of the show. Takes lot of hard work and talent to make everything seem so effortless. It's all so good that you can easily excuse the kinda lame stand up act he does in the beginning of the show.

Craig Ferguson does something similar at the Late Late Show which makes me think there's a distinct British humor at play here that embraces the personal (Norton's self-deprecating jabs at his sexuality comes to mind), quirky (Ferguson's choir and puppets!) and relaxed (love how Ferguson rips up the interview questions right before each interview).

* And of course his Prophet GrahamNortonFan of house YouTube who delivers The Gospel of Norton in a timely fashion each week. May the Light forever keep his intertubes unclogged and his Account unsullied by the wickedness of copyright holders. Amen.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:33 AM on July 25, 2012


Best episode ever.
posted by BiggerJ at 2:41 AM on July 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


My favourite Graham Norton clip is from years ago when he was on Channel 4: Natalie Imbruglia teaching Graham the Tim Tam Slam
posted by jonnyploy at 2:59 AM on July 25, 2012 [3 favorites]


This is my least favourite GN clip (for anyone who hasn't seen it's tension-destroying glory).

Of course it did lead to this which fans who have not seen it may enjoy.
posted by Mezentian at 3:49 AM on July 25, 2012


Awesome! And not blocked in my country!
posted by Vindaloo at 4:01 AM on July 25, 2012


I much preferred Graham Norton to Jonathan Ross. Though Paul O'Grady is the best of the camp chatshow hosts in my view.
posted by mippy at 4:12 AM on July 25, 2012


When David Tennant and Catherine Tate were just starting rehearsals for Much Ado About Nothing, they appeared on Graham Norton - and he tested them on lines. (Catherine did better, and was QUITE proud of herself....)

There's also something from an earlier David Tennant appearance I love, but is a bit too long to link to the whole thing - early in the episode, Graham reveals they placed a personal ad in a gay men's magazine as The Doctor, just to see what would happen. They actually got a response, and took a cell phone picture of David Tennant striking a "seductive pose" to send to the person. ....And then about a half hour later, they get a response.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:13 AM on July 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


Love the man sooOOOOOOOoooo much.
posted by gomichild at 4:15 AM on July 25, 2012


I was waiting for Tom Jones to take a verse...
posted by dywypi at 4:51 AM on July 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


At 1:01, Mr. Smith does his version of the Sammy Maudlin kneeslap.

He's a good actor. But he still does not persuade me that he is having that much fun.
posted by Egg Shen at 5:28 AM on July 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


I much preferred Graham Norton to Jonathan Ross. Though Paul O'Grady is the best of the camp chatshow hosts in my view

Both of them do very good weekend radio shows on BBC Radio 2 (Graham has the Saturday morning slot, Paul the Sunday evening slot) that are absolutely worth listening to if you can. They really nail the right mixture between music, interview and chat.
posted by garius at 5:49 AM on July 25, 2012


I think the audience were reading off a teleprompter though.

Doubt it - there was a similar audience-participation moment from when Will Smith was in the Live 8 concerts, and toward the end of his set he made some crack about "let's see how many real fans I got in the house," and then Jazzy Jeff (who, yes, was also there) fired up the backing track and Will launched into "Weeeeeeeell, THIS is a story all about how my life got flipped, turned upside down..." and then stopped and let the crowd finish for him. And they were all word-perfect.

Granted, that audience was in Philadelphia, so there may have been a bit of hometown advantage, but still.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:53 AM on July 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


Goofyy: Graham is the best. It's very weird. When I moved to the UK, the day we got our digital TV tuner installed, the first show that popped up was Graham Norton (about 8 years ago). I had never heard of him. OMG, he's SO GAY! I loved it.

Alan Carr, Chatty Man, will blow your mind. Example.
posted by afx237vi at 5:54 AM on July 25, 2012


^ That link might be slightly NSFW, depending on how much Gaga and bad language your workplace allows.
posted by afx237vi at 5:55 AM on July 25, 2012


I think the audience were reading off a teleprompter though.

Fresh Prince was very popular here in the nineties, as it was shown daily at teatime on BBC2. Most people aged 25-35 could recite the theme tune word for word.
posted by mippy at 6:07 AM on July 25, 2012


there was a similar audience-participation moment from when Will Smith was in the Live 8 concerts

vid
posted by smackfu at 6:12 AM on July 25, 2012


I remember Fresh Prince being shown at teatime on BBC2. I have never met anybody who has actually watched it, so I take issue with your assertion that most people could recite the theme tune.
posted by salmacis at 6:15 AM on July 25, 2012


For updated adaptions of Will Smith's oeuvre, Amy Pohler's "spontaneous" rendition of Parents Just Don't Understand on Parks & Rec is still the high water mark in my book.
posted by dry white toast at 6:17 AM on July 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


It anything, I could say that this thread was rare.

My favorite FPOBA related link.
posted by adamdschneider at 6:17 AM on July 25, 2012


I remember Fresh Prince being shown at teatime on BBC2. I have never met anybody who has actually watched it, so I take issue with your assertion that most people could recite the theme tune.

I'm going to disagree with you and second mippy - if you were a teenager or student during the mid-to-late nineties Fresh Prince was pretty much standard viewing.

I've yet to meet anyone within my general age bracket who's not at least aware of the characters/a few situations that came up. Indeed Fresh Prince is one of my favourite icebreakers in pub conversations because its so ubiquitous.
posted by garius at 6:37 AM on July 25, 2012


I remember Fresh Prince being shown at teatime on BBC2. I have never met anybody who has actually watched it, so I take issue with your assertion that most people could recite the theme tune.

Got to disagree with that. When I was a student in the mid 1990's it was shown on BBC2 and pretty much everyone watched it. Most people I know of my age can also recite the theme tune word for word.
posted by bap98189 at 6:46 AM on July 25, 2012


Wow. I never realised so many people were watching it. I was obviously socialising with the wrong (right?) people..
posted by salmacis at 6:57 AM on July 25, 2012


WHY DIDN'T THEY BRING "CARLTON" OUT TO DANCE WITH TOM JONES??? Opportunity lost...
posted by stefnet at 6:58 AM on July 25, 2012 [10 favorites]


Half of my sixth grade boys can recite "Prince of Bel Air" verbatim. There's something about it that has entered the general atmosphere.
posted by Peach at 7:07 AM on July 25, 2012


DJ Producer Pogo (who's been mentioned on the Blue several times) did an amazing remix of the Fresh Prince earlier this year, with accompanying video.
posted by bpm140 at 7:18 AM on July 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's super surreal to me how FEW people in North America actually know who Gary Barlow is. Or Robbie Williams for that matter. After living in Ireland for a couple years, coming back here you realize how little of UK/Ireland pop culture (particularly music) actually makes it into North America.
posted by antifuse at 8:13 AM on July 25, 2012


(and I mean that in a "I always knew that our pop culture here is very US-oriented, but it's quiet an eye opener to see how INSANELY POPULAR groups like Take That (and Robbie Williams as a solo artist) really are" kind of way, not a "Hey, they have their own bands too? Who knew?" kind of way)
posted by antifuse at 8:18 AM on July 25, 2012


this is the greatest thread in metafilter history.
posted by shmegegge at 8:31 AM on July 25, 2012




It's super surreal to me how FEW people in North America actually know who Gary Barlow is. Or Robbie Williams for that matter.

The first time I heard of either one of them was in a clip from a 2009 Never Mind The Buzzcocks episode, in which someone told a joke about Robbie Williams thinking he was being tormented by a hawk with Gary Barlow's face.

I'm....not entirely sure that seeing it in context would help make that make sense.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:54 AM on July 25, 2012


A recent episode with will.i.am and Miriam Margolyes was bum-squirmingly embarrassing - but will.i.am was just perfect (new fan here!) while Ms Margolyes...

"I'm just fascinated by you. Unfortunately I don't know many black people."
posted by humph at 9:04 AM on July 25, 2012


The first time I heard of either one of them was in a clip from a 2009 Never Mind The Buzzcocks episode, in which someone told a joke about Robbie Williams thinking he was being tormented by a hawk with Gary Barlow's face.

I'm....not entirely sure that seeing it in context would help make that make sense.


Umm... No, I'm not sure it would. Though the basic premise (playing on the Robbie Williams/Gary Barlow feud before the full reunion of Take That) makes sense.
posted by antifuse at 9:29 AM on July 25, 2012


That was awesome, and I think it's lovely that Will Smith is such a good sport about this. Given his acting cred, he could be all 'that's the past and I don't want to talk about it anymore' about things like this, but he's not. It wasn't even a perfunctory performance -- he was quite charming.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:40 AM on July 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


This reminds me of the Metatalk thread about one of the London pub quizzes where I hoped there'd be a Shakespeare round:
GHOST: But, soft! methinks I scent the morning air;
Brief let me be. Sleeping within my orchard,
My custom always of the afternoon,
Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole,
With juice of cursed hebenon in a vial,
And in the porches of my ears did pour
The leperous distilment; my mom got scared
And said, “You’re movin’ with your auntie and uncle in Bel-Air.”
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 9:58 AM on July 25, 2012 [6 favorites]


jacquilynne: "That was awesome, and I think it's lovely that Will Smith is such a good sport about this. Given his acting cred, he could be all 'that's the past and I don't want to talk about it anymore' about things like this, but he's not. It wasn't even a perfunctory performance -- he was quite charming."

Will Smith appears to be a being of pure charm, yes.

Here is is decade-old appearance on Inside the Actor's Studio
posted by dismas at 10:39 AM on July 25, 2012


Am I imagining things, or are TV studio audiences much more fun and enthusiastic in the UK?

Drunk.

So drunk.
posted by running order squabble fest at 12:27 PM on July 25, 2012


The first time I heard of either one of them was in a clip from a 2009 Never Mind The Buzzcocks episode, in which someone told a joke about Robbie Williams thinking he was being tormented by a hawk with Gary Barlow's face.

Ah I'd love to know who was it that came up with that. You don't possibly remember do you? Was it Noel Fielding by any chance? sounds like one of the things he'd say. I guess I will have to watch all of the 2009 NMTB to find out...

I have a new goal in life now, thank you.
posted by bitteschoen at 1:01 PM on July 25, 2012


I think it was Phil Jupitous actually - they showed a clip from one of Robbie's videos in which he was looking smugly into the camera, but also gesturing like he was brushing something off his shoulder. This struck people as an odd thing for him to be doing, and they all speculated about the meaning of the shoulder-brush - and Phil Jupitous speculated that maybe Robbie was just crazy and thought he was waving away an invisible bird. ...Not sure where the bird having Gary Barlow's face came from.

...The Buzzcocks episode in question is the one that David Tennant guest-hosted, which is why all the American DT fans were searching on Youtube for it. It is HIGHLY entertaining; Catherine Tate and Bernard Cribbins also were on, and Catherine Tate was lapsing into moments of being completely flaky (watch for her trying to remember the title of a Kylie Minogue song), while Bernard Cribbins was cracking such fantastic deadpan jokes that Noel finally asked if he wanted to come write for The Mighty Boosh.

And I promise this tangent is done. I will bring us back to the topic by remarking that Graham Norton and BUZZCOCKS are examples of how British TV is superior to American TV.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:18 PM on July 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


...aaand guess what, that was quicker than I thought, searching for "gary barlow hawk face nevermind the buzzcocks" got me to the comments of the video where they do quote the joke and ah it wasn't Noel, it was Phill on the other team, Phill Jupitus. It's right before the end of the clip but you have to watch starting at around 8 minutes for the whole bit about Robbie Williams. I am so happy now.

(And yes oh yes EmpressCallipygos seeing it in context makes it totally make sense!)
posted by bitteschoen at 1:21 PM on July 25, 2012


Ha heh well I posted before your comment showed up, EmpressCallipygos -- much gratefulness again because that was an episode I'd missed and ah David Tennant and Catherine Tate on it too and yeah. Happiness.
posted by bitteschoen at 1:23 PM on July 25, 2012


Not sure where the bird having Gary Barlow's face came from.

Well, it was pretty well known that Robbie and Gary did NOT get along, and were quite competitive with each other in regards to their solo careers after Take That broke up. So yeah, if he's got some crazy bird on his shoulder and he's looking smug, it's because he's sold a bagillion more records than Gary ever did (solo, Robbie has over 70 million worldwide, vs Gary's 4 million. Hell, I think Take That - both in Robbie-less and Robbie-ful iterations, have only sold 45 million worldwide. Source: wikipedia).
posted by antifuse at 2:11 PM on July 25, 2012


(And I should add - they seem to have made up for the time being, in order to make more money on a Take That-with-Robbie reunion album/tour)
posted by antifuse at 2:14 PM on July 25, 2012


I'd highly recommend the biography/travelogue Feel that came out a few years back - Chris Heath I think was the author. Before then I'd quite liked a few Robbie songs but didn't care for him much. He's a surprisingly smart and funny guy, and for someone who's been hugely famous since he left school is more well adjusted than you'd think. He's also driven by his 'demons' - I believe he has bipolar disorder. The video David LaChapelle directed for his Advertising Space single works really nicely if you've read the book.

He is astonishingly famous in the UK. Justin Timberlake might be an analogy, if JT swopped the electro irony with the British version (I can't imagine an American popstar singing a line like 'My bed's full of takeaways, and fantasies of easy lays, the pause button's broke on my video' somehow). Take That were enormous here (Robbie did a song, 'No Regrets', with Neils Tennant and Hannon on backing vocals, that's reportedly about his poor relationship with their manager) but Robbie more so - Angels is one of the most requested songs for funerals over here, apparently.
posted by mippy at 2:37 PM on July 25, 2012


i'm an american southerner and i freaking love british chat/panel shows - and not just the good ones either - sure, i watch buzzcocks and 8 out of 10 cats and qi - but i also happen to love shows like big brother's bit on the side. flying spaghetti monster bless youtube and sockshare.
posted by nadawi at 2:42 PM on July 25, 2012


My wife introduced me to Take That and Robbie Williams - not a giant fan of Take That in general, but I *love* me some Robbie Williams. The man can put on a SHOW (I regularly recommend his Live at Knebworth concert video to anybody looking for amazing examples of kickass live shows). I bought Feel for my wife, should give it a read myself. And any time he or Take That come up on MeFi, I go out of my way to gush. :)
posted by antifuse at 4:45 PM on July 25, 2012


If we're sharing our favourite Graham Norton clips: Gay or European.

Particularly amusing is Matthew Fox's initial discomfort.
posted by kjs4 at 12:40 AM on July 26, 2012


Oh! I just remembered this!

Asking Thandie Newton and Ricky Gervais to do a dramatic reading of an excerpt from the script to a porn film about Sarah Palin.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:00 AM on July 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


The Fresh Prince of Bel Air is single-handedly* responsible for me not wanting to tell other kids where my family lived, right up through college, by which time it had become clear the ironic references were going to have near-nuclear half-lives.

Our street (and our canyon, the westermost) was an upscale but not ostentatious neighborhood of mostly single story ranch houses, as our side of the development was originally built for UCLA professors (or so I'm told). Token low-income housing of its time! (Now it's depressingly out of reach, even for someone hoping to buy from his parents.)

Of course, I still loved the show. And so did my Grandma! While it was in production!

*mefi thinks this misspelled.
posted by snuffleupagus at 6:56 AM on July 26, 2012


Rewatching the Fresh Prince theme performance at Live 8 lead me to watch the whole set from the beginning.

Now THIS is an ENTRANCE.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:54 PM on July 26, 2012


OMG this post prompted me to watch some old episodes of The Graham Norton show... and lo and behold on Series 5 EP 12 [YouTube - 4:20] his opening monologue actually featured my infamous posted-to-flickr cat pic.

I guess that email asking for permission to use it back in early May 2009 was for real!
posted by gomichild at 1:36 AM on August 3, 2012


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