"So there's one in the breach?"
September 24, 2022 6:07 AM   Subscribe

It started with a tweet highlighting an episode from On the Air, a series of short animations from BBC Northern Ireland of talk radio from The Gerry Anderson Show dating back to the 2000s. The hypno-hen soon went viral, and now the late broadcaster's family have set up a website in his honour.

You can find other On the Air clips on YouTube, but the family site conveniently gathers them on one page. There's also a DVD release of all three series of the show. Fans of Aardman's Creature Comforts, Mid-Morning Matters with Alan Partridge and Peter Serafinowicz's impressions of the late Terry Wogan will love it.
posted by rory (3 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
As good as the hypno-hen is—and it's so, so good—the other episodes I've seen are just as hilarious, and I've already snapped up a copy of the DVD. There's something enchanting about seeing ephemeral radio phone-ins live on in this way... and to know that five-minute filler from a regional TV broadcaster can also live again, thanks to social media.
posted by rory at 6:14 AM on September 24, 2022

The podcast of The Gerry Anderson Show features 36 hours of highlights over 78 episodes, including a more complete clip of the hypno-hen exchange—available on iTunes/Apple Podcasts, BBC Sounds and the rest.
posted by rory at 6:36 AM on September 24, 2022

Like the hypno-hen, I had my own encounter with the Infant of Prague. In the last century, I came to college in Dublin and was assigned digs by the University accommodation office, and arrived with my suitcase fresh off the boat from Liverpool to a tiny three-bed terraced house in “Sandymount” . . . which turned out to be in far less salubrious Irishtown. The genteel widow Mrs B. only took in Protestant gentlemen from Trinity College, two at a time.

My first culture shock was that my assigned bedroom was filled with Catholic paraphernalia, including an Infant of Prague on the mantle piece beside a framed prayer to St Francis and a life-sized head-and-shoulders portrait of Pope Pius X at the foot of the bed – I was to be watched while I slept. The arrangement was 7 nights a week B&B with 3 meals on Sunday for £6.50 – cash in advance - which was a good deal even in those days. The only negotiable item was how the egg was to be cooked and I opted for hard-boiled as safest. A friend of mine wasn’t given the choice but faced a wobbly poached egg every day at 8 o’clock in the morning. She choked this down somehow rather than giving offense to her landlady, until a desperate hangover coincided with a letter from her mother and she hooshed the egg into the envelope and rushed from the house to catch the bus to college. The bus arrived immediately, so she disposed of the evidence in the bin attached to the city centre bus-stop. Thereafter she contrived to bring some sort of receptacle to every breakfast and that bin gradually filled with compost.
posted by BobTheScientist at 8:41 AM on September 24, 2022 [6 favorites]

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