Just 300 Minutes

Paul Merton and Shappi Khorsandi on “Just a Minute” (BBC2, 2012)To celebrate the 45th Anniversary of Radio 4’s Just a Minute, ten special episodes were recorded for TV and broadcast on BBC2, over the past fortnight.

For those who don’t know, this long-running comedy panel game is chaired by Nicholas Parsons, and challenges four individual panellists to talk for sixty seconds on a given subject, “without repetition, hesitation or deviation”. I know that doesn’t sound particularly hilarious in itself, but the fun kicks in when the panellists start interrupting and mocking each other, or trying to defend their alleged infractions. Apparently the Beeb have tried to transfer the show to television several times before, but it’s never really stuck… which is a shame, because I thought it was very funny, and a much better use of the time-slot than the crappy quiz shows they normally shove in there.

Paul Merton and Shappi Khorsandi on “Just a Minute” (BBC2, 2012)As for the female panellists: Ruth Jones and Josie Lawrence both appeared in single episodes… Liza Tarbuck and Shappi Khorsandi appeared twice… and Sue Perkins popped up in four episodes! I know it’s wrong to play favourites, but every time I see Tarbuck on this sort of show, I always think that she’d be top of my fantasy dinner party guest list… she isn’t strictly speaking a “comedian”, but she’s so naturally warm and funny, and she has such a fantastic laugh! Khorsandi definitely comes a close second, as far as favourite panellists go though… very sweet and funny and just ridiculously beautiful… sigh…

Note: The attached photos were stolen from an unofficial-but-very-comprehensive Just A Minute blog, which also keeps a running tally of how many times various panellists have appeared on the radio version of the show, and how well they performed.

About Dee CrowSeer

A comic book writer with an interest in feminism, philosophy, and affirmative action.
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