Just A Minute blog

A blog on the BBC radio programme Just A Minute

Location: Wellington, New Zealand

October 08, 2006

Graham Norton in the news

The JAM star has admitted to taking drugs - and that has got him offside with various politicians and various others... And he says he envies George Michael...

from ITV.com

Graham Norton: 'drugs are fantastic'

TV presenter Graham Norton has sparked outrage after revealing that he has taken "loads of drugs" and that ecstasy is "just fantastic".

He made the comments in an interview with Marie Claire magazine.

The 43-year-old said: "The only time I took ecstasy was years and years ago. It was absolutely amazing. It was just fantastic - really, really fun.

"I've tried loads of drugs, but it would really bug me if I got busted in the tabloids because I take them so rarely."

The BBC comedian, who also said that cocaine was a "middle-class choice of drug", has been severely criticised by MPs and anti-drug organisations over his comments.

Tory MP John Whittingdale - chairman of the House of Commons culture, media and sport select committee - said: "To boast about the extent of your drug abuse and enjoyment, as he seems to have done, sends a message which is extremely dangerous and against everything which everyone, including the BBC, is trying to do."

Labour MP Gwyn Prosser also said that Norton's comments were "grossly irresponsible" while Peter Stoker, of the National Drug Prevention Alliance, added: "Perhaps he'd like to ask the parents of those who died from ecstasy if they think it's fun.

From UPI

LONDON, Oct. 7 (UPI) -- The British Broadcasting Corp. is sticking with Graham Norton after the newly signed TV host's frank remarks about ecstasy and other recreational drugs.

The BBC said in a statement Saturday that Norton's comments in an interview with the fashion magazine Marie Claire were aimed at "an adult audience and reflect the frank and open nature of his personality."

Norton told the magazine he had extensive experience in sampling various drugs, including ecstasy, which he described as "fantastic" and "really, really fun."

Although he dismissed the appeal of cocaine, Sky News said, his remarks were sharply criticized by British anti-drug organizations that maintained celebrities should be telling people about the downside of narcotics.

From The Mirror

By Fiona Cummins

GRAHAM Norton has confessed he hankers after the wild gay lifestyle of George Michael - but lacks the courage.

The TV star admitted the singer is "probably living the life I'd like to live, but I don't have the nerve".

George Michael was recently caught cruising for sex on London's Hampstead Heath and was this week found slumped in his car for the second time.

Norton, 43, told Marie Claire magazine: "The thing about him is that he's very eloquent.

"He'll sit in a chair talking about going cruising and even my mother probably goes, 'Oh I kind of get it. You know, no one's been hurt here, it's not my cup of tea, but he seems alright with it'. And he humanises that behaviour."

Norton confessed he once ventured on to Hampstead Heath but hated it.

He said: "It was terrifying. I didn't enjoy it."

But he added: "I can imagine going to saunas."

Norton also said he had "tried lots of drugs" but rarely touches them now.


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