Trump, Toblerone and a tub of lard

We look back at the last­ing ap­peal of long-run­ning com­edy quiz show Have I Got News For You ?

South Wales Echo - - Tv Repeat -

HOLD the front page. Not many TV shows can boast a tub of lard as one of their star guests or at­tract a wide va­ri­ety of hosts from Sir Bruce Forsyth and Brian Blessed to Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch and Jo Brand.

Have I Got News For You? is back on BBC1 on Fri­day nights for a new se­ries and team cap­tains Paul Mer­ton and Ian His­lop say there is no dan­ger of them ever run­ning out of news sto­ries to pro­vide them with com­edy ma­te­rial.

The top­i­cal com­edy quiz be­gan in 1990 on BBC2 with An­gus Deay­ton as the res­i­dent host. He re­mained at the helm for 12 years and since then a va­ri­ety of politi­cians, co­me­di­ans, en­ter­tain­ers and ac­tors have at­tempted to keep order.

Paul and Ian say they have had a drink af­ter ev­ery show for en­tire 28-year run of the quiz and that the se­ries stays fresh be­cause the line-up con­stantly changes.

Politi­cians, the royal fam­ily and celebri­ties are all fair game for Have I Got News For You? But Ian says: “The week of Trump’s elec­tion, the big story for Paul was the fact that Toblerone were in­creas­ing the space be­tween the wedges: “I’ve rarely seen such gen­uine pas­sion.”

Paul wails: “It was my child­hood!”

The Rt Hon Tub Of Lard MP made an ap­pear­ance on Paul’s team in 1993 when politi­cian Roy Hat­ter­s­ley failed to ap­pear on the show for the third time in a row.

Paul went on to win, de­spite the tub’s lack of in­put and it was said the lard was the ideal re­place­ment be­cause it was “li­able to give much the same per­for­mance and im­bued with many of the same qual­i­ties.” Roy Hat­ter­s­ley even­tu­ally ap­peared on the next se­ries.

So who would be Ian and Paul’s dream guest?

“Well I’d like Blair. I think he’d be ter­rific,” says Ian. “And I think Lionel Blair’s an ex­cel­lent choice,” laughs Paul. “So that can be both our an­swers. Tony Blair and Lionel Blair.

“Ac­tu­ally, that would be the funny thing. You could ask Tony Blair about danc­ing. And then you ask Lionel, ‘So, these weapons of mass de­struc­tion…”

Ian, Paul and the host’s chair – all still go­ing af­ter 28 years

Ian His­lop, An­gus Deay­ton and Paul Mer­ton with guests Donna McPhail, Sal­man Rushdie and that in­fa­mous tub of lard back in 1993

Sir Bruce Forsyth was among the many guest hosts

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