14 January 2008

Two Pints ... live and kicking!

Series 7 of Two Pints ... got off to a great start on Sunday night with a live broadcast in front of a studio audience, including me! I am directly above the word "Johnny" on the first line and behind the lady in green.

We were not sure how popular a recording of the show on a windy Sunday night would be but we left here at 4:45pm and got to BBC Television Centre in White City and hour later and an hour and a half before the doors to the site were due to open. We seemed to be in our usual place in the queue which I estimated at the time to be around 120th.

A cold and not particularly pleasant 90 minutes later they started to let people into the site but they only had one security x-ray machine working (they had two last time) so it took us another 30 minutes to get on to site.

At that time we were allocated ticket numbers 140 and 141. I guess that we were slightly lower than expected due to the larger number of guests that had been invited.

The good news was that we were given a voucher for a free drink in the bar the bad news was that there was a long queue and we only had 20 minutes before the doors to the studio opened. In the end I managed to get and gurgle a bottle of Carling (?!) and chomp a cheese, tomato and mushroom panini.

We were then led into the studio and as there were only two of us we were squeezed into a couple of seats in the central block. The warm-up guy did his stuff and before we realized it, it was time for the show.

If you are a fan then you'll have seen the show and if you are not then there is no point telling you the plot, so here are a couple of observations instead. Firstly, it rally was all live, apart from one very short clip of Corinthina tied up in his cot. The set was layed out as usual with Janet's house on the left, the Archer on the left and Gaz's flat at the back in the middle. The difference was that they had lots of cameras in place to cover all the sets at the same time, rather than using fewer cameras and moving them around.

Clearly the script had been designed to be recorded in one take with few costume changes and no outside sequences but I was impressed with the risks they took with things that could have gone wrong, such as Gaz's fire eating and Janet catching a peanut in her mouth. I suspect that Donna was meant to catch the beer mat first time though!

There must have been a few other glitches that I did not spot at the time as the show over ran by a few minutes. This was corrected quickly and the repeat later that evening (which I watched, of course) had a few minor cuts. If you taped the first broadcast then keep the tape, it will never be shown again!

The excellent show made all the waiting worthwhile and the evening was rounded off nicely with a couple of quick pints before closing time in Richmond!


  1. You had an excellent evening I understand, sounding quite excited. All the waiting and being ushered around would probably put me off. Having said that, I remember how I was in the audience in Sydney for their version of Have I Got News For You ten years ago. Our friends, whom we were staying with, had not programmed the VCR properly, so we never got to see ourselves on Aussie telly. Most frustrating!

  2. 120th is a better position than I usually claim.


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