The Graham Norton Show
WFriday, BBC1, 10.35pm The Great Graham
hy is Graham Norton so much better at hosting a talk show than anyone else? In a recent interview with The Guardian, he gave an amusing possible explanation. While Norton thinks that the knack of putting people at their ease is “innate”, he told the story of a psychology student who did a piece on YouTube about how “I sort of make people like me”.
In the YouTube video, the student “goes through all these clips, analysing my technique. Apparently, I do a lot of arm-touching and he said there were all these rules I was following. Like: ‘ He opens with a compliment, but then he’s self-deprecating and then he undermines the compliment’. And it’s like: I do do all that! But it’s not conscious.
So I had to stop watching it after a few minutes. Because if you became self-conscious about it, that would be terrible.”
However he does it, Norton’s orchestration of giddy conversations with couch-fuls of Hollywood superstars is sublime. Unlike his American counterparts, Norton is able to punctuate the entertainment industry blather with relatively serious questions, and his quicksilver conversational style makes Jonathan Ross’s ITV show look blokeish, and old-fashioned. And Graham always gets the best guests.
This week acting legend Sir Michael Caine talks to Graham about his latest memoir, Blowing the Bloody Doors Off, in which he recalls the making of such iconic British movies as The Italian Job. He’ll be joined by Hollywood star Chris Pine, who plays Robert the Bruce in a forthcoming film by David Mackenzie, and Rami Malek, who is Freddie Mercury in the new biopic, Bohemian Rhapsody.