Never Mind The Buzzcocks: Meet new host Rhod Gilbert

Comedian

What do you think you’re going to do that’s different to the two permanent hosts on Never Mind The Buzzcocks before you?
All I can do is be myself and not let it keep me awake at night even though inevitably, it keeps me awake at night. I think my way is pretty sarcastic, dry, argumentative, competitive, bossy, piss-taking but ultimately inclusive, and I think that’s why they’ve asked me to do it.

I’ve made a couple of suggestions and most changes have been taken on board. One of them is I don’t like it when I see people on the show just there to be just ridiculed. So everybody there is now there on merit. Everything’s subjective but they’ve got something to say or they’ve done something. So that, I think, is a change for the better.

Rhod Gilbert and the teams play the potato lattice game

Also talking to the guys in the identity parade, it’s always felt a bit weird to me that they come out, get the piss taken out of them, and they sort of go off, they don’t even get to speak, they don’t even get a voice. It feels to me a bit objectified so I asked can I talk to them, can they say what they’re doing and stuff? I think in the show we did the other day that proved itself, because Wayne [Wonder] came out with the funniest line in the whole show: He sells more yams than records!

What were you dreading about the show?
I wasn’t dreading anything. The only worry is a big worry, it’s a huge show to take over. It’s been going for 18 years, 28 series. Previous hosts are almost on a pedestal through rose-tinted glasses and if you don’t live up to that... that is a huge, terrifying prospect. It’s that this could be the thing where it all hinges, where if you fail at this, all the rest goes out the window. You’ll just be known as the person who bloody ruined Never Mind The Buzzcocks. That’s a huge fear but you’ve got to take risks and you’ve got to push yourself. But I think the show’s right for me, it suits what I do, and hopefully it will be really good fun and some people like it.

What’s it like filming the show? Do you prepare with Noel and Phill? The guests don't know what the questions will be, do they?
No. Which is why I like it. I like having fun in the moment. I have an autocue script just to punctuate the show with good gags, we come up with five descriptions for the people in the line-up, but broadly I think Noel and Phill have a quick chat in the day. I met them the other day for five minutes, we had a quick hug, a quick catch up and we were on set.

 

Noel Fielding shares his feelings about time with Rhod

So what’s the hardest thing about being the host?
The context is it’s swelteringly hot, you’ve been up there for two hours, you’re exhausted, you’re trying to listen to six people talking you’ve also got somebody in your ear talking, you’ve also got an autocue in front of you, you’ve also got cards down with you with other information, so you’re trying to multitask and juggle all these things, and try and be funny. It’s a much bigger role than being on the panel. Nobody else on the panel has got cards in front of them thinking ‘Oh what’s next?’ Juggling all those things, you really have a lot going on in your head.

Would you be any good at guessing the intro round if you didn’t have the answers?
I don’t think I would be especially great, I don’t think I would be bad. It’s hard because I’ve got the answers – and as soon as you hear the music you think, ‘Of course that’s the answer!’ and you kick yourself, but that’s the joy of the game. That’s one of the things I like about Buzzcocks, it’s a quiz, it’s a nerdy quiz, and trying to keep it as that is one of the things I’d like to do with it - go back to the music. The quick fire rounds I’ve enjoyed watching the most are the ones where Mark Lamarr just did it as next lines. I think Buzzcocks at heart needs to stay a music quiz so you can play along at home.

What’s your dream line up?
Lead Belly, Noel Gallagher, Eddie Izzard and I’d like to champion some friends from the comedy circuit I’ve known through the years. People like Paul Foot, see if I can get them back.

Rhod Gilbert is the host of Never Mind The Buzzcocks.

Never Mind The Buzzcocks continues on Monday, 6 October at 10pm on BBC Two and BBC Two HD. For further programme times please see the episode guide.

More on Never Mind The Buzzcocks
Metro: Rhod Gilbert gets warm reception as new Never Mind The Buzzcocks host
The Mirror: Never Mind The Buzzcocks: Watch Peace frontman Harrison Koisser get grilled by Rhod Gilbert

More from Rhod Gilbert
BBC One Wales: Watch Rhod Gilbert's Work Experience on BBC iPlayer
BBC Radio Wales: Rhod Gilbert

Comments made by writers on the BBC TV blog are their own opinions and not necessarily those of the BBC.

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