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April 19, 2014

StephenFry

Craig Ferguson's Late Night "Experiment" Should Be Done More Often

by Danny Gallagher, posted Feb 26th 2010 7:04PM
Craig Ferguson
If you tuned into Tuesday night's 'Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson,' you might have found yourself questioning if there was something wrong with your hearing, your brand new surround sound speaker system, or both.

Nothing was wrong, though. The show didn't have a monologue. It didn't have any pre-planned comedy bits or hand puppets talking about Lindsey Lohan's latest coke binge. It didn't even have an audience.

The entire hour just featured two guys sitting in two chairs talking about anything and everything all at once. It was the most normal hour of late night television I've seen, despite the fact that both of them were taking an occasional sip of water from angry rattlesnakes.

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Did Craig Ferguson Ditch Audience to Save Money? Rep Calls Charge "Laughable"

by Gary Susman, posted Feb 26th 2010 4:10PM
As brilliant an hour of television as Craig Ferguson's Tuesday night show was - featuring just Craig and a single guest, fellow wit and raconteur Stephen Fry, chatting for an hour before no audience - could it be that the episode was less an experiment in reviving old-school Tom Snyder/Dick Cavett-style TV conversation and more an experiment in cutting costs?

That was the spin according to a report from Radar Online. The website quotes an unnamed insider as saying that 'The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson' has to pay audience members $20 each to fill some 50 seats at each night's taping, that such a practice is unique among late-night talk shows, and that Tuesday's show was more about saving CBS $1,000 on seat-fillers than about creating a more highbrow hour of television.

AOL TV did some digging of our own and found that, while there is a kernel of truth to this story -- CBS does sometimes pay seat-fillers to attend 'Late Late Show' tapings -- it's not a unique practice, though it's also not a routine one at the 'Late Late Show,' and was not the reason for taping Tuesday's show in an empty studio.

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Stephen Fry and Craig Ferguson Love America (VIDEO)

by Chris Harnick, posted Feb 24th 2010 1:15PM
Stephen Fry Craig Ferguson has a thing for America. As a new citizen, his love of the country runs deep, but he's not alone when British patriot Stephen Fry is around. During an experimental audience-free version of 'Late Late show with Craig Ferguson' (weeknights, 12:35 AM ET on CBS) that was just Fry and Ferguson chatting like old friends, resident alien Fry said, "I absolutely adore this country. Like you, I feel like I can live here for the rest of my life." Now all Fry needs to do is get a tattoo as sweet as Ferguson's Benjamin Franklin inspired one.

Watch the video after the jump.

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Review: Black Adder Remastered, Fawlty Towers Remastered

by Nick Zaino, posted Oct 21st 2009 3:03PM
Black Adder Remastered box setWhen I was a kid, I remember seeing episodes of a couple of strange British shows on my local PBS affiliate in Rochester, NY. I never caught them regularly, not even sure when they aired, but I remember one of them was a peculiar little period piece with some funny gags, and a storyline I never completely grasped.

I learned later this first show was the classic Blackadder series with Rowan Atkinson, and the reason the storylines never made sense from show to show is that there are four seasons of the show, all taking place in a different historical period. I saw them out of order, and mostly caught the first season.

Watching the new Black Adder Remastered - The Ultimate Edition DVD set from BBC America (video and audio both remastered), it's clear the best way to watch Blackadder is to at least watch each series in order. And if you can watch the whole run in order, so much the better. From the first series set in the Dark Ages to the last set in World War I (Blackadder Goes Forth), Atkinson's character, Blackadder, remains a scheming coward. But he changes, too.

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Last Chance to See: When a man loves a parrot on TV

by John Scott Lewinski, posted Oct 13th 2009 7:02PM
The Kakapo is an endangered parrot featured on BBC2's Last Chance to See.That's a Kakapo over there. It's an endangered species of flightless parrot. We'll get to him in a second. But I wanted to point out that this is, in fact, the first time a Kakapo has appeared at TV Squad.

This year is the 30th anniversary of Douglas Adams' classic TV, radio and book series, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. As part of the celebration, BBC2 TV sent Stephen Fry and zoologist Mark Carwardine off to visit the endangered species Adams searched for in another of his books, Last Chance to See.

Adams documented his growing passion for preserving fading species in the book. And BBC2 sent Fry and Carwardine out into the world to document how those species (like the Kakapo) were fairing.

You'll be able to discover the results when the show crosses the Atlantic in the coming weeks after its U.K. run. But, for now, the TV series spawned one of the web's hottest viral videos.

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Executive producer John Lloyd explains BBC's import impasse of QI

by Danny Gallagher, posted Aug 11th 2009 3:02PM
Actress Liza Tarbuck and Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson on QIJohn Hodgman's public lambasting of the BBC for not bringing QI to America didn't explain the network's reason for their decision, other than Dumb Ol' America is so dumb (how dumb are we?) that when we go to a sperm bank, we ask the teller for a BLANK.

Thankfully, Hodgman isn't the only man coming to the U.S.A.'s defense. John Lloyd, the show's executive producer, feels the same way so much so that he was willing to interrupt his vacation in Turkey to chat with me about it.

"Garth Ancier (BBC America chief) is convinced that Americans 'won't get it'," Lloyd said in an email. "We disagree (of course!)."

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Hodgman activates rage gland against BBC America for not picking up QI

by Danny Gallagher, posted Aug 8th 2009 2:02PM
John HodgmanJohn Hodgman seems like a gentle and mellow soul who uses wit, grace and intelligence to make his arguments, instead of more American methods of debate, such as yelling, name-calling or numb-chucks nunchucks.

However, when something gets stuck in his craw, he can unleash an unholy tornado of rage and seething anger. He can muster the unstoppable force of an undersea volcano and spew forth a raw stream of pointed arguments and reasoned thinking that could melt the butt off of an Eastern gray squirrel.

This time, Hodgman pointed his pressure washer of wit towards BBC America for refusing to pick up a comedy panel quiz show called QI.

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TV Squad Ten: TV celebs worth following on Twitter

by Mike Moody, posted Dec 17th 2008 3:05PM
john hodgman twitter daily show

Yep, I got a Twitter. It's part of my plan to plaster the Internet with links to my must-read blog posts about '90s indie rock and that handsome bastard Neil Patrick Harris (don't ask). Fortunately for you, some clever TV stars also use Twitter for fun and shameless self-promotion.

Here are ten fan-friendly TV celebs worth stalking on Twitter. Unlike that fake Stephen Colbert, these guys are all one-hundred percent, real-life paparazzo magnets.

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Bones: The Girl in the Gator

by Richard Keller, posted Feb 7th 2007 10:30PM

Bones -- The Girl in the Gator(S02E13) That was not good. -- Bones to Booth after he shoots an innocent clown head.

Hey, it's Bill!

Did you recognize the actor who portrayed sleazebag Monte Gold? It was none other than Alex Winter, the man who played Bill S. Preston, Esq. in the Bill and Ted movie duology (is it a word? I don't know, but I'm using it anyway). You don't remember him? Let's see if this jogs your memory . . . he was the friend of Ted Logan, played by the much more successful Keanu Reeves. Ah, now you remember! Nice bit of casting there by the producers of Bones.

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