Dictionary Corner Guests

Discuss anything that happened in recent games. This is the place to post any words you got that beat Dictionary Corner, or numbers games that evaded Rachel.

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AnnieHall
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Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Wed Feb 04, 2009 3:30 pm

Can somebody tell me, who chooses the guests on dictionary corner? Do the guests themselves "Volunteer" or are they invited to appear?
A few weeks ago, Richard Stilgoe (Once a DC regular) was on "The One Show" They asked him why he wasn't on Countdown anymore-did he not get on with Des O'Connor? He said they were friends and he didn't know why he was no longer asked to appear on the show.
I notice a few sports personalities appearing now, is thet Jeff's influence?
Some people on ever go on it for a week they never agin- wonder if they do something wrong?

Can someone please enlighten me?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Wed Feb 04, 2009 3:32 pm

Excuse "agin" - it's my bad typing AGAIN! (Yes I know it has an "A" in it! :P )

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Charlie Reams » Wed Feb 04, 2009 3:52 pm

AnnieHall wrote:Can somebody tell me, who chooses the guests on dictionary corner? Do the guests themselves "Volunteer" or are they invited to appear?
A few weeks ago, Richard Stilgoe (Once a DC regular) was on "The One Show" They asked him why he wasn't on Countdown anymore-did he not get on with Des O'Connor? He said they were friends and he didn't know why he was no longer asked to appear on the show.
I notice a few sports personalities appearing now, is thet Jeff's influence?
Some people on ever go on it for a week they never agin- wonder if they do something wrong?

Can someone please enlighten me?
I think Channel 4 prepare a not-so-shortlist and then the production team choose from that, depending on who's available and presumably while trying to maintain some balance of different guests.

Also I think judicious use of the Edit button would save you further embarrassment with typos.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Wed Feb 04, 2009 4:38 pm

Thank you, Charlie! :P

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kate Horton » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:12 pm

Hello Annie,
I am one of the APs on Countdown and am currently responsible for booking DC guests for Series 60.
We are really trying to mix some of the 'regular' Corner guests with new faces. Sometimes we get it right. Sometimes we don't. It's only after we've filmed a week's worth of shows in the one day that we can tell. Oh, and then when the shows Tx our loyal and opinionated viewers always let us know what they think!
To wet your whistle...here are a few new faces coming to a Dictionary Corner near you soon:
Kate Humble, Colin Murray, Jerry Springer, Martin Lewis, David Lloyd (cricket)
Last edited by Kate Horton on Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Hannah O » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:17 pm

Fascinating list! How on earth did you get Jerry Springer over here? No offence to those who watch his shows, I'm sure they're very entertaining, but can he really assemble a word of more than five letters? :P And are you allowed to tell me if he's any good, or are you sworn to secrecy? I'm waiting with much anticipation now to see him!

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kate Horton » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:26 pm

Thanks Hannah. Did you see Jerry's 'Who Do You Think You Are?' - he came across as a very intelligent chap and that's what I expect him to be. His shows tx from 1st April...

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:31 pm

Are we likely to see Richard Stilgoe again? What about Richard Digance? and what happened to Geoffrey Durham? He seemed to get replaced by Paul Zerdin (Is there only room for 1 magician?)

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Charlie Reams » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:43 pm

Hannah O wrote:Fascinating list! How on earth did you get Jerry Springer over here? No offence to those who watch his shows, I'm sure they're very entertaining, but can he really assemble a word of more than five letters?
He was Mayor of New York and has a degree in political science, don't assume that he's as stupid as his co-stars.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Matt Morrison » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:47 pm

Charlie Reams wrote:
Hannah O wrote:Fascinating list! How on earth did you get Jerry Springer over here? No offence to those who watch his shows, I'm sure they're very entertaining, but can he really assemble a word of more than five letters?
He was Mayor of New York and has a degree in political science, don't assume that he's as stupid as his co-stars.
I was briefly going to make a point about someone needing to be pretty clever in order to make a successful show out of stupid people. But then I remembered Jeremy Kyle.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kathleen Batlle » Wed Feb 04, 2009 5:54 pm

Hannah O wrote:Fascinating list! How on earth did you get Jerry Springer over here? No offence to those who watch his shows, I'm sure they're very entertaining, but can he really assemble a word of more than five letters? :P And are you allowed to tell me if he's any good, or are you sworn to secrecy? I'm waiting with much anticipation now to see him!
Maybe you've only seen a few of those awful US shows which Jerry Springer presented, and this has given you the impression that he's not too bright, but he has spent some time in politics and of course he came over as very sensitive in that "Who do you think you are" programme. I believe he was born in the UK and I feel sure he'll make a good DC guest. He should have some interesting anecdotes and I'm looking forward to seeing him.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Martin Gardner » Wed Feb 04, 2009 6:14 pm

Kathleen Batlle wrote:
Hannah O wrote:Fascinating list! How on earth did you get Jerry Springer over here? No offence to those who watch his shows, I'm sure they're very entertaining, but can he really assemble a word of more than five letters? :P And are you allowed to tell me if he's any good, or are you sworn to secrecy? I'm waiting with much anticipation now to see him!
Maybe you've only seen a few of those awful US shows which Jerry Springer presented, and this has given you the impression that he's not too bright, but he has spent some time in politics and of course he came over as very sensitive in that "Who do you think you are" programme. I believe he was born in the UK and I feel sure he'll make a good DC guest. He should have some interesting anecdotes and I'm looking forward to seeing him.
Still, The Jerry Springer Show ended years ago, didn't it? Since then he's done America's Got Talent and was a contestant on Dancing With The Stars (I think). Was he really the mayor of New York???
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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Lucy Gowers » Wed Feb 04, 2009 6:54 pm

Martin Gardner wrote: Was he really the mayor of New York???
No. Cincinnati. His political career was rather colourful. Not sure how much of it he'll be able to go into on a teatime show. But he's refreshingly honest about it.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Charlie Reams » Wed Feb 04, 2009 8:53 pm

Yeah, he's from New York, but was mayor of Cincinnati. Apologies.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Hannah O » Wed Feb 04, 2009 9:31 pm

Alright, alright, I'll stop judging a book by its cover, and wait and see! :P

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Chris Philpot » Wed Feb 04, 2009 11:19 pm

Colin Murray is another excellent choice. May I ask Kate, have you found it easier to recruit younger Dictionary Corner guests now that the presentation team as a whole is younger?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Jim Treloar » Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:21 am

Being an old fogey (I've watched Coundown from day 1) I was going to ask who Colin Murray is but I've just discovered from another website. I noticed that Kate didn't answer the question of why Richard Stilgoe isn't invited these days. Maybe too much of an old fogey like me? Being my first contribution here I belatetly offer my congratulations to all those on the recent CofC, compulsive viewing, thanks to all.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Jon Corby » Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:48 am

I love Richard Stilgoe, and I'm so thrilled that he was a DC guest for part of my octochamp run. He's funny, a good wordsmith (so makes a valuable contribution to the game) and I think gets the overall contribution spot-on. The one unique thing that makes him really special though is that he'll personalise his segments by creating limericks and anagrams based around the two contestants. Nobody else does this (that I can recall) and it's a very nice touch.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by David Gunn » Thu Feb 05, 2009 12:25 pm

AnnieHall wrote:I notice a few sports personalities appearing now, is thet Jeff's influence?
The 4 DC guests since Jeff has been in the chair are Andrew Sachs, Alastair Stewart, Paul Zenon & John Inverdale, how many "sports personalities" is that?
Zero, as John Inverdale is a sports commentator.
Kate Horton wrote:To wet your whistle...here are a few new faces coming to a Dictionary Corner near you soon:
Kate Humble, Colin Murray, Jerry Springer, Martin Lewis, David Lloyd (cricket)
Great list, with ONE sports personality, so including the 4 so far that's 1 out of NINE names mentioned.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Thu Feb 05, 2009 12:34 pm

Is a sports commentator NOT a sports personality, then? (They are in my book!)

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Matt Morrison » Thu Feb 05, 2009 12:46 pm

AnnieHall wrote:Is a sports commentator NOT a sports personality, then? (They are in my book!)
Yeah you're right Annie.

Not that I care, I think John Inverdale has been a fantastic guest. But to suggest a sports commentator isn't a sports personality is a bit like suggesting that the editor of NME, the head of EMI, and some rock band roadie all have nothing to do with music.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Hannah O » Thu Feb 05, 2009 1:01 pm

I thought that Andrew Sachs was an interesting guest, and I enjoyed his stories about Fawlty Towers, but I'm curious- was there an ulterior motive for inviting him to be a guest? I know you film lots of shows a day, but my guess is that he was on the show after the Radio 1 event happened. I noticed he got a guest part in Casualty after this happened, and I'm wondering if this is linked!

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by David Gunn » Thu Feb 05, 2009 1:34 pm

AnnieHall wrote:Is a sports commentator NOT a sports personality, then? (They are in my book!)
But not in my book; John Inverdale is a broadcaster who works mainly on sports events.
However, even using your definition, how does 1 in 4 DC guests, so far, constitute "a few"?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Rosemary Roberts » Thu Feb 05, 2009 3:43 pm

David Gunn wrote:
AnnieHall wrote:Is a sports commentator NOT a sports personality, then? (They are in my book!)
But not in my book; John Inverdale is a broadcaster who works mainly on sports events.
However, even using your definition, how does 1 in 4 DC guests, so far, constitute "a few"?
Speaking as one of the geriatric viewers who principally watch Channel 4 for the stair-lift adverts, I find a few sports commentators/personalities go an awful long way. In fact I think my personal requirement is already amply fulfilled by Jeff. Bring on the journalists, musicians and conjurors.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Jon Duncan » Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:24 pm

I'm still waiting for Amy Winehouse to appear.
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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:05 pm

And bring bach RICHARDS STILGOE & DIGANCE!! :lol:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Tim » Thu Feb 05, 2009 8:19 pm

AnnieHall wrote:And bring bach RICHARDS STILGOE & DIGANCE!! :lol:
I agree!! Though I think Bach may be a bit dead by now :lol:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:36 pm

Thank you Tim :mrgreen: (Must use edit button more!).

My favourite current DC guests are- Jo Brand, Paul Zerdin, Richard Digance.

Most of the others I F. forward through! :roll:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Phil Reynolds » Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:41 pm

AnnieHall wrote:My favourite current DC guests [include] Paul Zerdin
How do you manage to turn Paul Zenon into "Paul Zerdin"?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:43 pm

I thought that was his name! :roll: - never mind (I FFward through the credits as well! :mrgreen: )

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Jon Corby » Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:45 pm

Phil Reynolds wrote:
AnnieHall wrote:My favourite current DC guests [include] Paul Zerdin
How do you manage to turn Paul Zenon into "Paul Zerdin"?
Magic? :o

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Phil Reynolds » Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:46 pm

Kate Horton wrote:I am one of the APs on Countdown and am currently responsible for booking DC guests for Series 60.
Have you considered Rav the ex-policeman off of Crimewatch? His agent seems to be getting him onto just about everything at the mo. He might be not be very good at the game, but who cares?

On a more serious note, if you wanted some eye candy with brains to match I think Alistair Appleton would be a great DC guest.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kate Horton » Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:44 pm

Sorry in the delay in posting.
I've been busy building snowmen with my little boy :lol:
Chris - can't say if it's been easier booking younger DC guests for this series as many of them we didn't even approach last year. I am sure that the respect Jeff has throughout the industry is helping though.
As for the sports personality debate - John Inverdale was on several times last year. He is a returning guest... so I am confused :?
Annie - re: Stilgoe, Digance and Durham. I've been on the Countdown team less than 2 years so have never worked with Stilgoe and Durham though, obviously, I remember them when I was watched it. Just for you, I will submit their names for consideration... this means they have to approved by series prod, exec prod and Channel 4. Watch this space (or not!) However, we have hundreds of letter/emails from viewers every week giving us their opinions on guests etc and can't say I've noticed any of them asking for these guys back in DC.
Phil - thanks for your suggestions. Googled Alistair Appleton and found a picture of him topless. My afternoon just got better! (will add both names to list)
To everyone: am always open to suggestions for guests - but remember I am the booker and not the decision-maker. x

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Ben Wilson » Fri Feb 06, 2009 2:03 pm

Kate Horton wrote:To everyone: am always open to suggestions for guests - but remember I am the booker and not the decision-maker. x
Two words: Brian May. :D

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kate Horton » Fri Feb 06, 2009 2:45 pm

Ben Wilson wrote:
Kate Horton wrote:To everyone: am always open to suggestions for guests - but remember I am the booker and not the decision-maker. x
Two words: Brian May. :D

... we've asked and he's too busy to commit. Sorry, Ben!

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by David Roe » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:11 pm

Could I ask a question, which I realise might not be answered by anyone official:

Do dictionary corner guests get paid:
(1) the full commercial rate for 4 hours' TV for that particular guest;
(2) nothing at all, they do it for publicity/love of the game;
(3) something in between?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kate Horton » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:13 pm

Not sure what you mean by the full commercial rate but, basically, we pay a set fee for guests for one day in studio (9 hours). And, no, nobody does it for free!

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Charlie Reams » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:23 pm

Kate Horton wrote:And, no, nobody does it for free!
If only you'd ask me!

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Kate Horton » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:34 pm

you were our Phil Hammond standby!

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Charlie Reams » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:41 pm

Kate Horton wrote:you were our Phil Hammond standby!
I know, and then the bastard turned up! Next time I'll get Jono to stand in front of his car.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Gary Male » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:42 pm

Charlie Reams wrote:
Kate Horton wrote:you were our Phil Hammond standby!
I know, and then the bastard turned up! Next time I'll get Jono to stand in front of his car.
2 birds with one stone. Like it.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:25 pm

Oh yes, Phil Hammond, nearly forgot him. LOVE Phil, he's my absolute favourite on DC - Please ask him back soon, he's a GP but is funnier than most "So-called" comedians on the show!

Founder Member of the Philip Hammond fan club! :mrgreen:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:28 pm

I also love Tom O'Connor, please bring him back soon. Love his suits :mrgreen:

Who remembers Tom's "Crosswits"?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Ian Fitzpatrick » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:30 pm

AnnieHall wrote:Oh yes, Phil Hammond, nearly forgot him. LOVE Phil, he's my absolute favourite on DC - Please ask him back soon, he's a GP but is funnier than most "So-called" comedians on the show!
I would agree with that, almost went out and bought one of his books after his last appearance.
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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Phil Reynolds » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:39 pm

AnnieHall wrote:[Phil Hammond] is funnier than most "So-called" comedians on the show!
Agreed.
I also love Tom O'Connor
...who manages to be less funny than most so-called comedians on the show. And is a comedian. So-called.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:42 pm

That's a bit harsh- Tom's pink suits are enough to make anybody laugh, for a start! :mrgreen:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Charlie Reams » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:42 pm

AnnieHall wrote:Oh yes, Phil Hammond, nearly forgot him. LOVE Phil, he's my absolute favourite on DC - Please ask him back soon, he's a GP but is funnier than most "So-called" comedians on the show!

Founder Member of the Philip Hammond fan club! :mrgreen:
Phil Hammond appears w/c 2 March. Although calling him a GP is a bit generous, he hasn't undertaken any serious practice for about ten years and mainly works as a humourist.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:44 pm

Well, he can examine me any time! :mrgreen:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Phil Reynolds » Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:53 pm

Charlie Reams wrote:Phil Hammond appears w/c 2 March. Although calling him a GP is a bit generous, he hasn't undertaken any serious practice for about ten years and mainly works as a humourist.
According to the biography on his agent's website, he "currently works as a part time GP in the Bristol area", although of course what constitutes "part time" may be a moot point.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Ian Fitzpatrick » Fri Feb 06, 2009 5:02 pm

Phil Reynolds wrote:
Charlie Reams wrote:Phil Hammond appears w/c 2 March. Although calling him a GP is a bit generous, he hasn't undertaken any serious practice for about ten years and mainly works as a humourist.
According to the biography on his agent's website, he "currently works as a part time GP in the Bristol area", although of course what constitutes "part time" may be a moot point.
I definitely got the impression last time he was on that he was still doing some.
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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by AnnieHall » Fri Feb 06, 2009 6:00 pm

When they say "Bristol area" do they mean the city or..........? :mrgreen:

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Tracey Lilly » Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:14 pm

In his book 'Medicine Balls' He says he works as a GP on Thursdays.
I just love his sense of humour and the fact that he does not take himself seriously.
Looking forward to him returning.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Allan Harmer » Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:29 pm

Jon Corby wrote:I love Richard Stilgoe, and I'm so thrilled that he was a DC guest for part of my octochamp run. He's funny, a good wordsmith (so makes a valuable contribution to the game) and I think gets the overall contribution spot-on. The one unique thing that makes him really special though is that he'll personalise his segments by creating limericks and anagrams based around the two contestants. Nobody else does this (that I can recall) and it's a very nice touch.
I totally agree Jon - He is still in my top 5 all-time favourites.

Al.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Roxanne » Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:35 pm

Jon Duncan wrote:I'm still waiting for Amy Winehouse to appear.
link
I would love to see that happen. I don't think I've ever seen her on TV in a situation where she was free to talk about what she wanted, instead of being asked "so you're a drug addict and your husband's in prison, tell me a bit about that". The media focuses so mush on her personal life that there are probably people who would recognise her face but don't know that she's a singer.
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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Martin Gardner » Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:57 am

I like Richard Stilgoe because he keeps his piece short and humorous. If only other guests could do the same...
If you cut a gandiseeg in half, do you get two gandiseegs or two halves of a gandiseeg?

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Lesley Jeavons » Mon Feb 09, 2009 11:22 pm

AnnieHall wrote:When they say "Bristol area" do they mean the city or..........? :mrgreen:
:lol: *not worthy*

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Hannah O » Tue Feb 10, 2009 6:54 am

I'd probably say Bristol. And his son is apparently a very smug boy etc. etc. according to my brother, who goes to school with him! (Sorry, had to clam my 15 seconds of fame!)

How about Tony Slattery as a Countdown DC guest? He's amusing, very intelligent and I'm sure he has a way with words! I expect he'd also have lots of amusing anecdotes.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Heather Culpin » Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:26 am

Good idea Hannah. Saw an old 'Whose line is it anyway' on Dave recently and I'd forgotten how good he was (and hopefully still is).

There are others from WLIIA who could be good guests too, eg Clive Anderson, Josie Lawrence, Stephen Fry, Graeme Garden, Sandi Toksvig - and curiously looking at the wikipedia page for it it seems Jerry Springer has been on it too.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Gary Male » Tue Feb 10, 2009 11:51 am

Ah, Tony Slattery playing the host in Party Guests on WLIIA?, one of the great pleasures in life.

How about trying to get the comedian Richard Herring, who has a well-documented love of Scrabble and is currently racking up panellist appearances on all sorts of shows, or David Frost who has a wealth of stories to tell.

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Re: Dictionary Corner Guests

Post by Adam Dexter » Thu Feb 12, 2009 3:47 am

Hmm I was just wondering if John Inverdale had nothing better to talk about than dangerous animals. I must say, it was so hard having to wait until tomorrow for the next enthralling tale. He's a Sports Commentator, why not give some sports anecdotes? It just smacked of laziness really (yeh, I'll just look up these animals, and tell you about them). I thought I had tuned into the Discovery Channel by mistake at some points!
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