The Countdown episode of The IT Crowd was one of the funniest, but with Chris O’Dowd and Richard Ayoade off doing bigger (not necessarily better) things now, I don’t think we’re likely to have more of that ilk again. Ayoade’s hosting of this week’s Never Mind the Buzzcocks was a welcome return to the screens for a version of our favourite geek character, Moss, as he played the role of geeky quizmaster.
‘No need for jokes’, opined Ayoade as he suggested that NMTB should return to good old-fashioned quizzing about popular music. And indeed there were no jokes at the expense of guests or other pop figures in the show, but it was a very funny episode as Richard Ayoade’s stern admonitions to refrain from jokes where in themselves jokes. The other guests, Matthew Crosby (comic), Shingai Shoniwa (The Noisettes), Ed Sheeran and Caroline Flack all played their parts well. When Ed Sheeran asked if a CD with Simon Cowell’s words of wisdom even exists, Ayoade talked about existentialism. When Caroline Flack said what we often say ‘I know it, but I don’t know what it’s called’, Ayoade retorted that she meant to just say that she didn’t know it. When the guests asked for facts, Ayoade gave them facts.
I haven’t been watching Never Mind the Buzzcocks regularly and it’s always hit and miss, but especially depends on its guest host. Ayoade was a welcome relief from musicians and presenters reading out scripted jokes and allowing themselves to be ridiculed. I’d like to see him back on our screens in tv comedies, but I suspect he’ll be sticking to films now. Submarine, though not as good as the critics raved, was a nice turn; he was always good at directing music videos; and I have no intention of watching The Watch, which looks terrible, but I wish him well, and hope we see Ayoade back on our screens on tv soon.