Just A Minute blog

A blog on the BBC radio programme Just A Minute

Location: Wellington, New Zealand

March 30, 2008

An Audience with Nicholas Parsons

I've been asked to pass on this info

"An audience with Nicholas Parsons" is taking place next month. Nicholas will be talking about his career including JAM.

The venue is the Park Royal Hotel, Stretton(just off the M56 near Warrington)

The date and time is Thursday 24th April at 7.30pm
For bookings - the entrance fee is £10, seat reservation essential
Phone 0800 822 3474(line open 24 hrs)

March 26, 2008

next series

JAM will be returning to the Hay-on-Wye Festival and to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Manchester will also see a recording as will London. Haven't got dates as yet...

March 23, 2008

Sir Clement on Cluedo

A former member here sent me a link to a video he uploaded featuring the great man on a show called Cluedo... I am on dialup so can't download it but you might be interested.

The cast, as well as Clement is a good one

Mrs Peacock: Rula Lenska
Colonel Mustard: Michael Jayston
The Reverend Green: Richard Wilson
Professor Plum: David McCallum
Miss Scarlett: Koo Stark
Mrs White: Mollie Sugden

March 20, 2008

Bafta nominees

Paul Merton has clocked up his 11th Bafta nomination, this time for his TV series on China. Paul Merton In China is a finallist for best factual series. His main show Have I Got News For You is also a finallist in Best Entertainment Show.

According to The Independent, John Willis, the chairman of the Bafta television committee, said: "It shows Paul Merton's versatility. It was a travel series, but with humour and humanity and clearly worked very well with the audience. It showed he had the range to move out of the Have I Got News For You studio."

Stephen Fry is also a finallist in Best entertainment performance for QI.

Let's hope we get three wins on April 20!

March 18, 2008

A great end

We were talking at the Yahoo group the other day about the best ever year or season - and I think this season might be a good candidate. It's been terrific, and that was a great finish to the run.

Paul, Tony, Graham and Sue just seem to be able to fire each other up - yet again the benefit of having people who have worked together before. Of the six combinations, Paul and Graham have done 37 shows together, Paul and Tony 27, Tony and Graham 16, Tony and Sue 14, Paul and Sue 12 and Graham and Sue 8. So it was a team that was experienced at playing together.

Tony Hawks was particularly good today I thought and a deserved winner. Paul didn't get a point until halfway through the third round.

It's been a very good season - but now we have to wait until July for more...

March 16, 2008

Kenneth Williams book

The great man is - apparently - the subject of a new book. Remembered Laughter is written by James Ruddick, who describes himself as an investigative journalist. His website says he finished writing the book in 2006 and his website features the book cover with Kenny looking brooding and handsome.

Kenny's fans are promised an explanation of his career and life - just how did the classically trained actor end up as a camp turn on chat shows and panel games? Why could a man so in search of love never commit himself to anyone else?

The only biography so far on Kenneth was written a year after his death and without the benefit of his letters and diaries. The book promises new revelations from unpublished letters and diary extracts.

Nevertheless it's not yet on the market as far as I can see. The writer's website links to Amazon but clicking that link takes you nowhere.

I feel Kenneth deserves a better book than the one so far. His life remains something of a mystery and certainly his death deserves some scrutiny from an investigative journalist. I hope the book does hit the market.

Maybe it's due for publication in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of Kenneth's death, which is next month.

March 15, 2008


Great to see the second QI DVD is out on Monday.

For those interested this is a very funny game show with plenty of JAMmers involved - Stephen Fry, Jo Brand, Bill Bailey, Sean Lock, Phill Jupitus, Linda Smith, Barry Cryer, Fred MacAulay, Arthur Smith, Jeremy Hardy, Dara O'Briain and Josie Lawrence.

Others involved are Alan Davies, Rich Hall, Clive Anderson, Phil Kay, John Sessions, Jimmy Carr, Jeremy Clarkson, Mark Gatiss, Anneka Rice and Mark Steel.

I haven't seen it yet but I can't wait!

March 11, 2008


again a really really funny show. Am I just in a good mood - but gee this season has been a bloody good one. Only the first King's Lynn show was just okay - every other show this season has been really really funny.

Paul of course is about three quarters of the reason - I reckon he just gets better and better. But Jack Dee and Clement were also good today. Jack Dee should certainly have another run soon - but then i said the same of Chris Addison and Phill Jupitus... Chris Addison should certainly have had another run this year, he sounded like a natural.

Well done Nicholas, panel and production team - I'm only sorry we have just one more show this season.

March 05, 2008

Interesting articles

I like this piece on Pam Ayres.

And this piece on Blythe Duff, one of my fave one/two-off guests - and she even mentions JAM!

March 04, 2008

the Ghelani era

Next week is the second show with Sir Clement Freud, Paul Merton, Liza Tarbuck and Jack Dee, then on March 17 we have show two with Paul, Tony Hawks, Graham Norton and Sue Perkins.

After that, excluding the 40th anniversary clips show, this will be the stats for the era of the current producer (three seasons, 32 shows). I've italicised the people who hadn't appeared before she began.

Paul Merton 26
Clement Freud 20
Gyles Brandreth, Tony Hawks 8
Marcus Brigstocke, Chris Neill, Graham Norton 6
Jenny Eclair, Kit Hesketh-Harvey, Sue Perkins 4
Janey Godley 3
Chris Addison, Pam Ayres, Julian Clary, Alun Cochrane, Jack Dee, Dave Gorman, Phill Jupitus, Josie Lawrence, Maureen Lipman, Maria McErlane, Pauline McLynn, Neil Mullarkey, Greg Proops, Tim Rice, Liza Tarbuck 2
Jo Caulfield, Fred MacAulay, Dara O'Briain 1

So you can see from that
* there are now just two who can really be called regulars.
* although there are lots of women on the programme, none of them are really makinga claim as a successor to Linda Smith.
* Lots of different people used and lots of people being tried.

It makes it hard to predict teams for the next season. I'm assuming there will be just 10 shows, though the last two British summer seasons have had 11 so here's hoping!